What is Self-Care? It's more than just having a bath
We all love it when someone takes care of us. But it’s how we treat ourselves that shows others how to treat us. So we need to learn how to take care of ourselves.
It’s easier said than done. And what does it actually mean?
Self-care can be that thing on your list that rolls-over, migrating from the bottom of one list to the bottom of the next (new word idea: listshifting).
No one is holding us accountable, so it’s the good intention that gets swallowed up by the pressure and demands of our busy day-to-day lives.
It disappears into the rush, as time seems to vanish, racing from one week to the next.
It’s time we changed that.
Why does self-care matter?
You may scoff at the idea of a bit me time as being selfish, millennial flakey-ness and feel that we should all just Keep Calm + Carry On.
You may feel that you simply do not have any space in your overpacked schedule to also carve out an appointment to take care of yourself.
You may find yourself taking care of everyone else only to find yourself too drained to do anything to take care of your self.
Why are you at the bottom of your to-do list I wonder?
When we neglect self-care, we neglect all other areas of our lives.
You cannot pour from an empty cup.
If you neglect yourself you can end up feeling burned out, depressed, drained, lethargic and numb.
Bad for you, and bad for the people around you.
Your battery is flat.
And you don’t know how to put it on charge.
You probably take care of your phone battery better than your own battery?
You need to find ways to put your battery on charge. It’s vital for your psychological, physical and spiritual wellbeing.
To get started, think about prioritising your different needs.
8 kinds of self-care
Physical: take care of your body - have a shower or bath, clean your teeth, drink some water, make a cup of tea, eat some fresh food, take your vitamins, get more sleep, have an early night, nap in the day, do some exercise, give yourself permission to rest, massage, acupuncture, wild swimming, sauna.
Social: take care of your mind - connect with someone everyday, ask for help if you need to, plan to see people you love, people watch in a café, write a card to someone, set your boundaries and learn to say Yes or No, communicate your feelings, declutter toxic people.
Intellectual: take care of your brain - learn something new, read a book, cook a new recipe, listen to a podcast, watch a documentary, listen to a different point of view, start an online course (in something you LOVE), go on a new walk, drive a different route, do a puzzle, play cards.
Professional: take care of your boundaries - if you’re working from home communicate your boundaries (rules that work for you), fill your office space with flowers, plants, candles, sounds that help you focus, schedule in your breaks, keep the camera off in Zoom meetings, decide on the time that you stop working (home time), transition by commuting to and from work, write out your achievements of the day and plans for tomorrow.
Financial: take care of your money - get to know your feelings around money, make a plan, know your spending, prioritise your energy on this, ask advise from a financial or debt expert, take one action every day, decide on what are the important things and what are the luxuries, work out your affordable treats.
Home: take care of your environment - make it your safe space, declutter your space, clean and tidy, candles and blankets, photos and pictures, plant and flowers, change the colours, sit near the light.
Spiritual: take care of your spirituality - find ways to clear your mind and get into flow, tune into your higher purpose.
For some this is exercise, for others it’s breathing techniques, meditation, mindfulness, creativity, colouring, music, visualisations, the arts, singing or being in nature, forest bathing
Tune in to your higher purpose and what gives your life meaning.
Take care of the planet.
Emotional: take care of your feelings - tune into your emotional state with body scans, your heart rate or breathing notifications, noticing your triggers, labelling your feelings, pay attention to your body and your gut feelings.
Know what helps to soothe you, what re-energises you, what helps you to feel safe and make your emotional wellbeing the centre of your decisions.
Keeping a thought journal (rather than a record of the quotidian of your day) is one of the most powerful and available self-help tools.
Work out the things that you do that drain you and don’t serve you and start to say No!
Make some notes on the wheel of your life to start to discover you deepest needs.
Ask yourself 4 questions:
1. What are the changes that I want to make?
Look at the areas of your life and work out where you need the most refuelling. What is out of balance?
Do you need to give yourself permission to pause? For so many people slowing down, resting, and taking some time out are dirty words. They feel selfish, guilty or lazy for taking some time out. For some, slowing down means that challenging thoughts rise to the surface of your mind that keeping busy usually helps you to avoid thinking about them.
2. What activities bring me joy?
3. When can I add self-care to my schedule?
When it gets to the end of the day and your energy is flagging self-care is often the last thing you think you can find time for. But it might be something as simple as running a bath before bed, soaking in essential oils, for a quiet moment that makes all the difference.
It can be your reward and relaxation. Or it can be the first thing you do in the day. Your morning energy boost that is easier to fit in if you do it as soon as you wake up. Sitting outside with your first cuppa of the day, walking the dog, do ing some yoga stretches, eating a healthy breakfast.
Your wellbeing is really worth becoming part of your daily ritual. It’s a mindset. It’s something you decide to guard and protect. Like your life depends it. Because it does.
Put your own oxygen mask on first.
4. How will it make my life better?
Taking care of your self, giving yourself permission to pause, to live your life from an emotional perspective has been shown to have hugely beneficial effects on your wellbeing. It reduces anxiety, boosts energy levels, improves sleep, lifts mood, improves productivity, improves immunity, and reduces stress.
It takes consistency and a little time to feel all the benefits.
Start simple. Start with something that you will keep to daily.
It’s a skill. We can all learn to do it. All it takes is for you to take some of your time and energy and spend it on recharging your batteries.
To give you a little help…
With this in mind I thought I would put together a wellbeing gift box for you - with everything you need to get started.
TIME FOR M+E
Our Time for M+E gift boxes are the perfect present to give to someone you love (especially yourself) who needs the permission to take a pause.
They have all the tools you need to bring an oasis of peace and tranquility into a busy, stressful life.
The charm bracelet is your anchor and reminder to make a ritual to take some time, light the candle, steep your tea and settle into a comfy chair. Take a deep breath, be inspired by reading a chapter of the book and make a few life notes.
Do Pause is a book about a new approach to coping with the day-to-day. You will discover practical tips to reset and regenerate, deepen your thinking, take back control of your time and reconnect with yourself and the people around you.
While the M+E 100% plant based candles are hand poured with specially selected therapeutic essential oils to calm your mind and lift your spirits. Scents of geranium and rose will drift around you.
Enjoy the ritual of steeping your fresh, mild green tea which helps calm and clear your mind as you focus on making some life notes.
Get to know yourself in your recycled A Line Is A Dot That Went For A Walk notebook writing in beautiful pencils made from newspaper.
Every gift box helps you to a happier, healthier and more relaxed self.
Everything in them is sourced from planet friendly and sustainable materials.
Kind to you. Kind to the planet.
Every gift box arrives beautifully packaged.
All products are either made by us or carefully selected from small female-founded independent, ethical businesses. So with every gift you are also supported many people’s dreams.
Sustainable | Therapeutic | Plant based
Please note: the image is for reference only. Please see What’s In The Box below for exact contents.
What’s In The Box?
Do Pause Book
Box of mental health supplements
A Line is A Dot That Went For A Walk Notebook
2 x recycled newspaper pencils
Packet of hand picked green tea
Heart shaped tea strainer
Hand poured candle with therapeutic essential oils
Take care + Love Yourself,