When we don’t take the time to dial in to what we need physically, mentally and emotionally our life can feel off-kilter. Your body will tell you what it needs, but are you paying attention? The signs are there, but we are too ‘busy’ to notice or are not open to change?
Ask yourself these simple questions:
How much sleep do I get? Am I compensating for lack of sleep with caffeine and sugar?
Do I eat to perform my best mentally and physically?
How do I handle stress?
Am I personally and professionally fulfilled?
Am I constantly sick, sluggish or depressed?
Have I considered speaking to a therapist?
What are my self-care routines?
Is personal development a priority to me?
Am I stuck in a toxic relationship?
Here are some ways to make self-care a priority:
1. Take care of your EPM: Emotional, Physical and Mental Health
We are happier in our personal and professional lives when we take care of ourselves emotionally, physically and mentally. Carve out “me time” because self-care routines impact how you treat other people and how you handle the life’s challenges. Self-care is not selfish; it enables us to unwind, decompress, process the things we struggle with, and take a good hard look at the influences that drain us; this is an essential way to diminish anger, sadness, grief and disappointment and get us to our center core.
2. Shift Your Mindset
There are endless activities you can do to shift your mindset such as:
- Taking a yoga class, meditation or mindfulness workshop.
- Journaling your feelings and gratitude.
- Going off the grid and taking a tech break.
- Getting a makeover.
- Throwing a party for no reason (or celebrate the end of something, such as a job or relationship, and the excitement of new beginnings!).
- Taking a trip.
- Reconnecting with your faith or exploring a new one.
- Getting out and meet other incredibly uncomfortable and awkward strangers like yourself.
- Taking music lessons—music is a great healer.
- Creating a vision board.
- Enrolling in an art class—ceramics, drawing, painting, glass blowing, etc.
- Exploring a new hobby or something you used to enjoy.
- Attending a TED talk, lecture, inspirational workshop, etc.
- Learning creative and healthy cooking techniques.
- Volunteering at a local food bank or animal shelter.
4. Flip Your Struggles into New Beginnings
Your rejections and struggles might be knocking the wind out of you, but they just might elevate you to a new start. Be open to new possibilities and keep moving forward.
Find a networking group and connect with new faces. People who support you and cheer you on are the best network to have in your life. Toxic and critical people can suck the life out of you. Be selfish with whom you choose to spend your time. Aim for a drama-free life with people who have your back.
6. Let Go of Overthinking
We tend to worry about the past, the future, and overlook exactly where we are in the present moment. So much thought is spent anticipating and thinking you know how an event or conversation will play out, but unless you have some visionary powers, let it go. Breathe, take a leap, and quiet your mind.
7. Stop the Negative Self Talk
We can be our own worst enemy. Stop berating yourself and holding yourself back with self-sabotage, self-doubt and crippling criticism. Try being your own best friend for a change. Be kind to yourself—inside and out.
Talk to someone you know and trust, such as a counselor, friend or confidante. You do not have to deal with trauma and life’s assaults on your own. Sometimes things are just too tough to process solo. Closing off and shutting down is not healthy or productive. Venting is healthy because you can laugh, cry, yell, analyze, and process whatever it is you are suppressing. Expressing yourself leads to greater self-awareness, new beginnings and much needed healing.