Simple Steps to Self Care
Here’s what I know for sure – self care is not a luxury, it is a necessity. Our lives are packed with the “doing” and we often overlook the importance of “being”. This month we are going to focus on four key areas of self care and identify a few simple steps to begin your path to a more activated life.
First, we are going to assess four key areas of wellness. As you go through each of the following, give it a plus+ if this is already part of your self care routine.
- Physical wellbeing – are you eating healthy? Exercising regularly? Do you get enough sleep? Are you getting your preventative medical checkups?
- Emotional health – are you maintaining a work/life balance? There is a misconception that this means equal time in each area. What balance looks like is that you control the when, where, and why for each one. While many of us are now working from home, do you have a start and end to your work day? Are you able to express your feelings? Do you have a practice of gratitude and/or mindfulness? Or, do you have a hobby you enjoy? Where is your emotional outlet?
- Social wellbeing – We have become accustomed to the virtual space so are you using it for social connections? Are you maintaining connections and having meaningful conversations? Do you spend time with friends? Do you spend time alone with your partner?
- Spiritual health – One of my favorite sayings is that we are not human beings having a spiritual experience, but spiritual beings having a human experience. Do you set aside time for spiritual practices? Whatever that looks like for you. Do you spend time in nature? (try forest bathing)
If you find that some areas may be lacking, what can you do to begin to build in self-care? We are going to start with identifying some small actions to support your efforts. Create a list of what you would like to add or actions you want to take for the following areas and here are a few examples to get you started….
- Relaxation – you can listen to a guided meditation, or use breathing exercises.. You can find these and other resources here on Alaka’i Associates.
- Health – Back to the basics – exercise, sleep, and nutrition. Try going for a walk – my 15 minute morning walks help wake me up and start the day with positive energy. Or some days I need to take a nap. Did you know there is a skill to napping? Don’t try to sleep, just lay down to REST. And always drink enough water and plan healthy meals.
- Connections – While we still can’t meet a lot in person, you can call a friend or family member, join a new online class or support group, write a letter, or meet with friends virtually for a collective happy hour. Stay connected!
- Rejuvenation – Again, many of us are still working from home and feeling like we are stuck inside all the time. At least once each day, step outside for some fresh air and sunshine, or watch the sunrise or sunset. Or take a shower, hot or cold, whichever one works best for you. Reset your energy.
- Comfort – That might be baking cookies, watching old movies, making your favorite comfort food – mine is tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches, or having a pajama day. OR all of the above all in one day!
- Expression – How do you express yourself? Do you have a hobby you enjoy? You can try journaling, listen to and/or dance to your favorite music, or start a DIY project.
Now, take your list and decide what you will work on as a daily practice, or once a week, once a month, or yearly. This month try to start with a simple daily practice of setting three self-care check-in times throughout the day.
- In the morning, how will you start the day? Try a 10 minute guided meditation. I love the app Calm.
- Mid-day check-in to recharge and reset. This is the time for me to stay hydrated and moving. Check out the “hydrated” link for my favorite energy drink!
- And finally, at night, how do you end your day and prepare for tomorrow? For me, that is a gratitude check-in, with just 3 things I am grateful for that day.
You don’t have to do it all at once! Getting overwhelmed is not self care. You may want to create your own self care planner or add reminders to your current planner, calendar, or phone. Put post-it notes on your desk or mirror. And make an appointment with the most important person – YOURSELF! You can also take it one step further and create a vision board to keep your self-care goals front and center. Whatever method or plan you choose, make it a habit and it will lead to more joy and abundance in your life.
If you would like more one-on-one support for your wellness journey send me a Contact email. I would love to be your guide.
Until next time…LiveAlohaLiveWell