Self-Care is Not Selfish: Let’s Recharge
Let others help:
Many of us feel a lot of pressure to do everything ourselves. Doing it all may not be realistic. In fact, doing it all may be doing too much. Assign chores to your children. And when people offer help, say Yes. And learn to say No to things that do not bring meaning or value to you.
Enjoy friends and family:
Schedule a walk with a friend, go on a date with your partner, play with your kids, go to religious services, and seek out positive people. Social and spiritual connections are important to our well-being. Being with friends and loved ones makes us happy, improves our health, builds resilience, lowers anxiety and depression and increases self-esteem. Planning activities gives us something to look forward to, but also be open to the impromptu.
Take a break:
Instead of working longer or harder to get something done, take a break from it. Taking a break can clear your mind, reduce stress and boost creativity. When you return to the task you may be more productive. Breaks can be rests, a walk, stretch, phone call to a friend, or refueling with healthy food such as fruit or peanut butter and crackers. Do what feels good, then get back to work!
Leave work behind:
In our 24/7 world, make a clean break from work at the end of the day. Create a ritual that marks the transition from work to home. Like Mr. Rogers, try changing out of work clothes to play clothes right away! Even though work is often just a swipe away, try not to look at your email when you’re off the clock.
Do things you enjoy such as walking, running, swimming, yoga, spinning, biking, dancing and more. Exercise reduces anxiety, depression and negative moods and improves self-esteem and brain function. Being active outside is even more beneficial. When combined with physical activity, nature has a calming effect and can help fight anxiety and depression.
Get good sleep:
Getting sufficient sleep helps the brain process emotional information and combats stress. Turn off screens at least an hour before bed, avoid caffeine in the afternoon and go to your bedroom to sleep.
Make self-care part of your day, which means making time for yourself.