We regularly hear from mental health experts that self-care is important. But many of us are overworked, stressed and just plain tired. It’s no shock that you may have put your own self-care on the back burner. The good news is that by following these five daily self-care tips you’ll avoid burnout and start to feel good again.
Take Time to Be Mindful
Mindfulness is an overused buzzword these days, but it doesn’t make it any less effective. Being mindful can take many forms. It can be eating a meal without watching the tv so you can focus on the sensations of enjoying your food. You can try downloading a meditation app on your phone to help you relax. Or, you can sit in a quiet room, close your eyes and simply focus on your breathing. The concept of mindfulness is a Buddhist concept, but anyone can practice being mindful, anywhere. It’s free, easy and many people swear by the age-old technique of mindfulness. The potential benefits of mindfulness include stress & anxiety reduction, a boost to your working memory, better focus and an overall increased feeling of well-being.
You’ve heard it endlessly from your doctor, but did you know that regular exercise benefits you mentally as well as physically? According to The Canadian Mental Health Association, staying active prompts your body to release endorphins. These feel-good chemicals help boost your mood and can help reduce pain & increase pleasure. The good news is you don’t even need to exercise for that long to reap benefits such as increased self-esteem & focus and the reduction of stress, anxiety and depression. Even 15 minutes of light-to-moderate exercise such as yoga, dancing or jumping jacks can help elevate your mood. Regular exercise is proven to help prevent both physical and mental health issues.
Maintaining a well-balanced diet is imperative to your good health. Eating food that’s healthy for your body & mind can help you feel more alert and improve your concentration. A specific change in diet can radically impact your mental and physical health. There are even diets specifically formulated to reduce certain health issues such as inflammation. Eating on a regular schedule and choosing healthy foods that are good for you helps your body maintain steady blood sugar. When your blood sugar drops you’re more likely to experience irritability, fatigue & depression. Eating smaller meals more regularly helps your body release energy more slowly over time, leading to a better mood throughout the day.
Let Yourself Enjoy a Favourite Activity Every Day
It’s time to treat yourself! Take the time to give yourself a little gift every day. It doesn’t have to cost money or take much time. It could be reading your favourite novel or taking a relaxing bath. Spend time listening to music or doing some yoga to centre yourself. You deserve a little time to yourself, even if you’re an extremely busy person. This precious time will help you to enjoy the little things in life and keep perspective with things get stressful. Remember – it’s all about balance.
Make Time For Friends & Family
Social interaction with others helps you manage stress and helps you feel happier. Emotional health is just as important as physical health. You should make a point to spend quality time each day with friends & family. Social interaction is good for your mind and gives you a sense of security & belonging. Spend time with folks who give you energy and not the toxic people who take it away. Regular socialization is an important step toward happiness and a great self-care tip.
Don’t Overwork Yourself
We’ve all been there. Being overworked can lead to burnout, boredom, exhaustion & depression, all of which contribute to poor job performance. Being a diligent professional is great but when that hard work begins to overwhelm you, it can take a serious toll on your mental and physical health. When you’re particularly busy at work be sure to take regular breaks to walk around and socialize with others. If possible, try to get at least eight hours of uninterrupted sleep each night so your mind has time to reset and you’ll have the energy to take on the day. Getting enough rest can also help you improve your mental clarity and reduce brain fog.
Follow these daily self-care tips to take care of yourself first, so you can take care of others later. And remember the most important self-care tip of them all: be kind to yourself.