Self-Care isn’t only important, but it is a necessary practice to maintain a healthy standard of living. Taking care of yourself should be a priority in your life.
I have given myself away, piece by piece, to my job over the years. I missed out on my kids first steps, first words. I lost valuable time that I will never be able to get back. I didn’t focus on what was important at the time. My priorities were aligned with putting food on the table and being the bread winner, but I lost a large chunk of my life.
Two years ago, I decided to take my life back. I am more than my job! I read a quote recently that has inspired me to take even more time for myself, placing my focus on my health and wellbeing.
“You aren’t required to set yourself a blaze to keep everyone you warm.”Tweet
This is so true. How many times do you give yourself, your energy and your time away and leave nothing behind but crumbs at the end of the day?
I know I have this more times than not. It is easy to give pieces of yourself to others, but what about you. Self care means keeping some of those pieces in tact and holding onto them, cherishing them. It is from those beautiful pieces that you will grow, rejuvenate, and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Why is Self Care Important?
Humans have been developing, implementing, and practicing self-care since before the time of Christ. The business of self-care is a billion-dollar industry. In ancient times, Greeks called self-care “philautia” or “self-love”. They believed when you love yourself you can love others more freely. To love others ignites communal growth and cultural development.
Setting and maintaining a sustainable level of self-care in your daily routine can help to improve your immune system, increase your positive energy, decrease stress, and fight against depression. Taking time for yourself to focus on your health and well being is just as important as breathing. Self-care replenishes positive energy flow, rejuvenates strength and lengthens one’s spiritual roots.
Areas of Self Care
Self-care is more than loving and accepting who you are. It is a way of living, a plan of action, a goal to be achieved. Self-care branches into all areas of life from your home to work. Self-Care is Level 10 Living!
Now, you may ask, what is level 10 living? Good question.
Level 10 living is your personal life design at its best. It is the perfect lifestyle fit for you, designed by you with a focus on your desired lifestyle. Although it may not be written down on paper, everyone has a standard of living that they would like to achieve—their ideal lifestyle. When you take strides to reach this lifestyle you are actively taking care of yourself.
Physical Self Care
Physical self-care is the act of caring your body. There are things we do daily without thought that are for our physical health. Personal hygiene, nutrition, sleep, and exercise are a few examples.
“Your body is your temple. If you don’t maintain it, where do you plan to live?”Tweet
Social Self Care
Humans weren’t made to be solitary. From the beginning of time, man had a companion. Building relationships and sharing a part of yourself with others is ingrained into human DNA.
Spiritual Self Care
Knowing yourself is the first step to knowing others. Spiritual self-care doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with religion. It is about having a deeper understanding of who you are, your values, and your beliefs.
Mental/Emotional Self Care
I can’t express enough how important emotional/mental self-care is. Everyone struggles with something, but not everyone can handle their problems by themselves. Having someone to confide in and help you work through your problems is a special thing. Journaling, keeping a diary, planning for success, these are all examples of how you can mentally prepare and stabilize your emotions.
Environmental Self Care
Walking into a clean home after an exhausting day at work will help you to feel relaxed and relieve some of the stress in your life. Organization and cleanliness work hand in hand in creating a stress-free environment where you can let go of your worries, kick back, and relax.
Financial Self Care
9 out of 10 people suffer from financial debt. Debt is like an anchor. It holds you back for doing what you want to do and living the lifestyle you desire. Of course, not getting into debt into the first place would be ideal. But realistically, debt is almost impossible to avoid. Managing your debt effectively is key to having the financial resources you need to maintain your standard of living.
Self Care Ideas
Track Your Sleep Pattern
Sleep is important. Inadequate sleep can negatively affect your life. How many times do you yawn throughout the day? That is probably a sign that you are lacking enough sleep at night. Maintaining a constant sleep schedule can decrease your chance of developing major health issues, increase your energy level and decrease your stress.
Tracking your sleep pattern in your bullet journal is a fantastic way to measure the amount of sleep you are getting versus your moods throughout the day.
I have a tough time getting enough sleep, especially if I am knee deep in a project. I can’t tell you how many times I have woken up in the middle of the night, grabbed my laptop and started working. Just the other day, I work up at 2:30 in the morning and thought about the stack of papers waiting for me to process. Instead of going back to sleep, I went ahead and starting crunching numbers. It took me until 1 pm that afternoon, but I was finally able to get everything finished. Needless to say, I was useless for the rest of the day.
Adequate sleep can also help you to maintain a state of mental clarity. You tend to not think straight if you are tired. Your focus wanes and your thoughts start to get unfocused.
Nutrition and Supplements
Eating right will naturally increase your energy levels and help you to maintain your ideal body weight. Have you ever heard the phrase “you are what you eat.” I believe this phrase to be true. If you fill your body with sugars, fats, and carbohydrates, you will likely feel lethargic. Your energy levels diminish with the amount of carbs your body has to process.
However, if you stick to healthier foods, like fruits and vegetables, or complex starches like sweet potato, you will feel fuller quicker and have extended energy to spend throughout the day.
Develop a weekly meal plan and stick to it. It is easy to know what you want to do if you plan ahead and already have in mind what needs to be done.
If you are like me and you only get to really eat one good meal per day, supplementing your meals with nutritional drinks, like special K protein or daily vitamins can help ensure you are receiving adequate nutrition each and every day.
Exercise increases the endorphins in your brain and releases a happy hormone called dopamine. It not only makes you feel good, but keeps you looking good too. But with all things, too much is not beneficial. Exercising 2 or 3 times a week is best. It can help you work out your stress and wind down after a long day on the career front.
Plan Your Week
Planning your day, week, and month will help relieve the stress of having to remember what you need to do each day. If you are like me, there is more for you to do than you could possibly remember. I know with me, I start off with a full page in my bullet journal before Monday ever begins. My running to do list works wonders and helps me to keep my focus on my goals.
“Failure to plan is the same as planning to fail.”Tweet
Take A Day Trip
Taking a day trip to get out of town, away from the normal, will give you a sense of catching a breath of fresh air. Not only can you go somewhere new, you can work through some of the deeper issues that are weighing you down. Riding down the road with your windows down and blaring your favorite some while singing at the top of your lungs will greatly decrease your stress level and increase your value of life.
Constant Reflection & Gratitude
Reflecting on all that you have accomplished helps to maintain a constant focus on your goals as well as track your progress toward reaching your goals.
I reflect on my work week every Saturday, going over all that I was able to accomplish and putting items on the next week’s list of things I need to get done. On top of a weekly reflection, I like to do a mid-month and a monthly reflection. This helps me see just how much I have been able to accomplish. Seeing my achievements written out on paper helps to re-energize my soul and gives me renewed strength to push forward.
Self Care is important. Develop a Self-Care plan and stick to it. Your plan can be as simple as spend 15 minutes each day focusing on something you enjoy or exercise three times each week. Whatever self care activity fits your life style the best, I wish you all the luck.
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