If you have been following my blogs, you know that December is all about setting yourself up for success in the new year. The first step was about creating the mentality for success. The next part, and the topic of this blog, is the self-care essentials.
WHY IS SELF CARE IMPORTANT?
Self-care is about taking care of yourself and meeting your needs. For so many people, self-care goes out the window because they don’t feel there is enough time and other things are more important. The problem is that kind of life is not sustainable. Not taking time for self-care leads to:
- Inability to be productive
Does that sound like the life you want to lead? I think it’s safe to assume that the answer is no! Remember this and start making time for self-care! So, let’s talk about the self-care essentials.
THE SELF-CARE ESSENTIALS CAN BE BROKEN DOWN INTO 5 CATEGORIES:
- Physical: This is all about taking care of your body. This means creating healthy eating, sleeping, and exercise habits. It is also important to keep up with your doctors’ appointments and care for yourself properly when you are sick.
- Psychological: This about taking care of your mind. The things that go along with this are engaging in things that are intellectually stimulating and self-reflection. With intellectual stimulation, consider activities that include learning and thought. For example, taking a class on something, going to a museum, going to the theatre, or reading. There is no right or wrong here; any activity that you find mentally stimulating fits in here. For self-reflection, mindfulness is helpful to learn how to be aware of your thoughts, opinions, and beliefs. Journaling can be a great activity to maintain psychosocial self-care.
- Emotional: This about taking care of your emotional health. This entails taking time for relaxation and fun, building self-esteem, and learning coping skills. For emotional wellbeing, it is important to take time each day to engage in activities that you find enjoyable and relaxing. It is also valuable to engage in activities that build self-esteem. Feeling good about yourself is an important piece of emotional wellbeing. In terms of coping skills, it is necessary to have a toolbox filled with things you can do when you are dealing with stress. Effectively managing stress is a key part of living a happy satisfied life. Next week will focus on stress management, make sure to tune in if you struggle with knowing what coping skills to fill your toolbox with.
- Relational: This is all about having satisfying relationships. Social interaction, intimacy, and support are all essential when it comes to mental health and happiness. Know what kind of support system you need. Figure out what types of friendships you want and seek out what might be lacking. Same goes for romantic relationships. It is important to spend time with others and not let that fall by the wayside when you have a lot on your plate.
- Professional: This is all about work-life balance and making sure your job does not consume you. Your job generally is a big part of your life and, therefore, has a big impact on mental health. That makes it one of the self-care essentials. What goes into this is finding a job that brings you satisfaction as well as knowing how to set effective boundaries. Boundaries relate to work-life balance (i.e. how much time to devote to your job vs. social life vs. self-needs) as well as with co-workers/bosses/supervisors and clients. Another key component is taking time for professional development.
All categories are equally important. Checking in on all 5 areas daily is key to keeping up with your self-care essentials. It probably seems like a lot, but that is why it is important to account for each self-care essential and come up with some type of routine and structure.
Think about where you are right now with your self-care. In what areas are you on top of your self-care? Which areas need some improvement? What are your concerns in prioritizing your self-care? Write it all down! There is a worksheet to help with this in your self-care workbook (download below). Feel free to hit reply and share with me where you are currently at with self-care.
Start prioritizing you! For help with creating your self-care structure and routine, download the self-care workbook here