In a world where many of us have been programmed to believe that more is always better and that rest is for the weak, it’s often difficult to get started on a self-care routine.
Recently, however, our levels of stress and anxiety have gotten so out of control, that the sheer amount of people looking for easy ways to unwind and find some peace in their lives has led to the boom of the “self-care industry.”
After the holidays, when many of us are feeling the sugar and alcohol hangover, as well as a desire for some quiet time after reunions with family and friends, self-care feels particularly incredible.
For those that aren’t quite ready to invest in a monthly yoga membership, sign-up for a meditation retreat, or go get a massage, and want to start with simple, easy practices, there are many free ways to start caring for yourself at home.
Kelsey J. Patel, reiki master, and empowerment coach, shared a few tips to maintain a healthy relationship with yourself in a recent article on Livestrong.
“Do a daily check-in with yourself each morning to see what you need, just for you, that day,” she says. “It could be the simplest thing like your morning coffee alone, a 30-minute walk with your favorite music, or drinking a green juice to fuel your body.”
Strengthening your ability to speak your truth, particularly the ability to say no to certain engagements and conversations, is also important.
“Honor yourself and your desires and share it lovingly and openly,” Patel added.
Remember that movement can be the best medicine. Whether it’s dancing, running, skiing, boxing, yoga, or anything in between, prioritizing exercise and expressing yourself through movement will help release stagnant energy, energize you, and help you feel good in your own skin.
True self-care is knowing what works for you as an individual. This means exercising in a way that is enjoyable for you, and not pushing yourself into any regimen out of fear of not being enough, or fitting into someone else’s standard of success.
Finally, be your own best friend — and take his or her advice to heart.