Self-care is a lot more than rainbow bath bombs and warm cups of tea (even though those do fit the bill). Check out these self-care tips for the physical, mental, and spiritual self!
There’s a reason 2021 is going to be the year of self-care. After the year we just left behind, doing a little extra for yourself is definitely in order!
Got a self-care kit, checklist, or plan already in hand? Congrats, you’re ahead of the game!
But if you open your self-care kit to find bath bombs, chocolate, coloring books, and lavender essential oils, you may be missing out. Oh, you’re going to have a super fun pampering night, make no mistake—but it won’t necessarily be the night that you need.
Self-care actually goes far beyond using sensory stimulation, relaxation, and instant gratification to soothe rough nerves. It’s taking the initiative to:
- Recognize what you need, and
- Give yourself what you need.
“That’s easy,” you’re thinking. “My emotional state needs bath bombs and chocolate.”
True, probably. But what other parts of you are needy, and what are they asking for? Your emotions are important, but they’re only the tip of the iceberg—turns out humans require a lot of attention, and we’re really good at ignoring the essentials!
Your body, mind, and spirituality all demand attention, or you do not satisfy your basic needs. Self-care is about proactively keeping an eye on how you feel and knowing why you feel that way. It’s about recognizing the parts of you that are neglected and doing what’s necessary to give them fundamental TLC.
Is it still self-care if I really don’t want to do it?
Of course it’s self-care even if you don’t want to do it!
The concept isn’t about making yourself feel good in the moment without looking at the long-term impact on your well-being. It’s fine to eat chocolate and take a bath on a self-care night if that’s what you need, and it’s easy to want that, but not every self-care act is something you like.
You don’t want to go to bed early, but your body and mind will feel better in the morning.
Talking to your therapist may be the last thing you want to do, but it helps you cope with life.
Quitting Instagram for a while is a hard as hell no for most of us, but social media detox is so good for the dopamine system!
Look at self-care as a commitment to yourself. If you were caring for a pet, you wouldn’t skip all the things your chonker finds distasteful—baths, vet visits, and Furminators are non-negotiable.
The same is true when you’re caring for yourself. Self-care is making yourself do what’s necessary to keep your cup full, even if it’s not exciting or fun.
Check out these 15 self-care tips for every part of your life!
The right self-care plan addresses the three areas that are most important to your well-being:
Your well-being depends on your good health in every one of these areas. When your body is weak because it doesn’t get enough sleep and subsides on fast food, the fallout affects how you feel in other areas.
On the flip side, when you nurture your physical, mental, and spiritual self, you feel exponentially better on every level.
Pay attention now; it’s time to take care of yourself:
5 physical self-care tips
#1: Quench your damn thirst!
The entire world is walking around in a chronic state of dehydration. What do we have against water?!
Drinking at least 15 cups of fluids per day is adequate for men and 11.5 cups for women. The good news is that the moisture from the food you eat counts! (Good luck measuring it, though.)
#2: Eat what makes you feel good
Is your body screaming in protest against canola oil, processed foods, gluten, or whatever else is triggering inflammation in your poor gut? Eat less of what makes you feel bad, and increase your intake of whole foods like:
- Unrefined grains
- Legumes and beans
- Healthy sources of protein
#3: Move your body
When you exercise, the brain releases endorphins and becomes more sensitive to serotonin and norepinephrine (feel-good hormones). The result is that your negative mood gets squashed and replaced with happy feels!
It doesn’t matter what you do; just do something. All it takes is burning calories and moving your muscles.
#4: Get enough sleep
How’s your sleep hygiene? If you struggle to get restful ZZZs, look at your bedroom setup. You can get better quality rest by having a perfect sleep environment with:
- A regular bedtime and routine
- Darkness (especially with no blue or white light, which disrupts melatonin, an important sleep hormone)
- A cool temperature near 65 degrees Fahrenheit
#5: Take care of your health
If you’re guilty of putting off doctor’s appointments because you don’t have the time or you just don’t want to, we’ve been there… but it’s time for that nonsense to stop. Your body deserves to feel good, so take it to the doctor when it’s complaining.
5 mental self-care tips
#1: Go outside
It’s easy to go days or even weeks without spending more time outside than it takes to reach your car. Make a hiking date with yourself, go on a walk, or hit the park, and see how it clears your head and helps you process thoughts.
#2: Stick with something
Practicing a new skill and getting better at it over time is amazing for personal development and self-esteem. If you quit yoga because you couldn’t make your crow pose fly, think about getting back on the mat and committing to improvement.
#3: Keep your mind sharp
Cognition is a use-it-or-lose-it deal—you’ve got to keep your brain alive and active to stimulate and grow your mind. There are thousands of brain training apps and games, but to get you thinking quicker, check out:
- Lumosity for science-backed mental fitness and brain training
- Peak for tailored brain workouts and cognitive growth analysis
#4: Make your perfect routine
Our brains love routines! The perfect schedule means that you know what’s going to happen at what time all day long. Your mind gets to stop splitting its attention between a million decisions so you can be more mindful. Win!
#5: Keep a personal record
One of the best ways to get more control over your mind is by recording your days or weeks somehow. It can be a classic journal, voice notes on your phone, or even doodles with comments.
Merely writing or talking through your thoughts helps you process and examine your life, and so does rereading your journal later.
5 spiritual self-care tips
#1: Read about something bigger than you
Your spiritual development starts with finding new ways to look at life. The best way to do that is by reading books about being your higher self and connecting with the greater world. The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment is a newbie-friendly place to start.
#2: Practice meditation
Meditation is an age-old spiritual practice that involves being without acknowledging your thoughts or surroundings, usually with focused breathing.
Box breathing is an easy way to meditate, even if you’ve never done it.
Breathe in for four counts, hold it for four counts.
Exhale for four counts, then hold it for four counts. Keep going! Learn more tips here.
#3: Ask yourself hard questions
Have you looked at yourself lately? Most of us never ask ourselves the tough questions that make us really uncomfortable… but those are some of the most important ones! Start with questions like:
- How was my attitude when I faced a tough challenge?
- Where do I keep repeating the same mistakes?
- What gets in the way of my happiness?
#4: Be kind
Kindness makes the world a better place, and random acts of kindness often cost nothing. Leave a worry stone at the park for someone else to find, or tell the girl at the checkout counter that her lipstick shade slays!
#5: Take a walk
This can be a spiritual as well as a physical helper. Going on a walk around the neighborhood has plenty of spiritual benefits. It helps you feel more connected to your community as you see and interact with the people around you. There’s also the plus of being outdoors and doing moving meditation (where you focus on your footsteps instead of your breath).
Can CBD be one of the essential self-care tips?
Heck yeah, it can! Sometimes life is so crazy that you don’t want to find the time to do self-care because it’s even more stuff to fit into your day. Cannabidiol can help put things into perspective by taking the edge off and letting you focus on what’s essential in the moment.
Plus, it’s easy to add CBD to your self-care kit in the form of fruity punch tinctures, sweet little sugar bears, or sparkly little gumdrops!
Sunday Scaries CBD comes from the finest-quality local Colorado-grown hemp, so you know you’re giving your body and mind the very best. Hop on the train to a Scare-Free Life and get 20% OFF Sunday Scaries when you subscribe!