When my kids were young, I didn’t always make self-care a priority. I had great intentions of exercising and eating right, but I felt like life was too busy to take care of myself. After a while, my weight went up, and my energy level came down. I felt tired all the time, and I didn’t enjoy my life. I realized that it was my health and wellbeing that was suffering. I had to decide that I would no longer feel guilty taking the time for myself. If I allowed myself to take this time, I knew I would be happier. My happiness would benefit my family.
If you are a mom, maybe you feel the same way. It’s incredible how the guilt about taking the time for ourselves can take over. I hope this article encourages you to drop the guilt. You deserve this special time for yourself.
Self-care is an integral part of being healthy and happy. When we don’t take the time to care for ourselves, our mental and physical health suffers. Self-care becomes even more critical as we age. Self-care isn’t just a way to make us feel better; it is a way to help us live longer and healthier lives.
In this article, I share with you why self-care is important for our well-being. I also share some self-care activities and my self-care routine.
What Is Self-Care?
Self-care is a term to describe engaging in activities that bring your joy, or taking care of your health. Self-care could mean getting a massage or taking an afternoon nap for some people. For others, self-care might mean reading a book or spending quality time with their family. The idea is to do something that helps you feel good and allows you to relax and unwind. Self-care also includes eating a balanced diet, exercising, and getting adequate sleep.
Why Self-Care is Important
The most important thing to maintaining good health is taking care of ourselves. Our mind, body, and soul are all connected. If we neglect caring for ourselves, we may experience problems that can lead to physical, mental, and emotional challenges. To have better physical, emotional, and mental health, we must focus on our self-care.
The Importance of Self-Care for Our Mental Health
Have you ever been so overwhelmed with life and work that you had to take a mental health day? Most of us carry a lot on our plates from family life, job, and other obligations. If you are not careful, it can all come together to make you feel like you are drowning in your stress. This stress can be debilitating for some people and lead to depression or anxiety.
If you feel overworked, stressed out, or down in the dumps, it’s time to check in with your mental well-being. You may need to step back from work, school, or family obligations to get your mind, body, and soul back on track. When our mental health suffers, every aspect of our life suffers. Check out this article about why self-care is important for our mental health.
The Importance of Self-Care for Our Physical Health
We know that eating nutritious foods, regular exercise, and sleeping well all help our bodies and minds function at their best. However, we sometimes fail to focus on our health. Not taking time for ourselves is especially true when we are in a stressful situation. We may be so focused on what is going on in our lives that we forget to take care of ourselves. If we don’t care for ourselves physically, our bodies and minds don’t feel good. Our physical and mental health improves when we focus on maintaining healthy practices.
The importance of self-care for our emotional well-being
Emotional health allows us to experience positive emotions and have a sense of meaning and purpose. It is important to be aware of our emotional state, and know when something is wrong or out of balance. It’s important to understand what we feel. Understanding our emotions allows us to make mentally healthy choices about life’s difficulties.
How to Practice Self-Care for Our Overall Health
Practicing self-care is often not easy for people to do. When stressed, it can be hard to find the time or energy to take care of yourself. And many people feel guilty about taking the time for themselves. It’s time to stop feeling guilty! Practicing self-care is integral to staying healthy. Self-care practices help you relax, relieve stress, and prevent illness. You can practice self-care in many ways.
Eat Healthy Foods
Eating healthy foods will help you keep your body healthy and strong. Make sure you are getting a well-balanced diet of vegetables, fruits, whole grains (if not eating a grain-free diet), protein, and healthy fats. What we eat affects not only our bodies, but also affects our mental and emotional health. When we eat healthy food, we have more energy and feel better.
Take Time to Relax and Enjoy Life
If you feel stressed, overwhelmed, anxious, depressed, angry, or sad, it’s essential to take time out for yourself. It helps to do things that make you feel better. Some ideas for taking time for yourself include taking a walk, having a warm bath, or reading a book. The important things is to do something that makes you feel relaxed or happy.
Stress management is crucial for our physical and mental health.
If you feel overwhelmed by life’s stresses, try to give yourself a break from work. You’ll be able to relax more if you do something enjoyable for yourself.
Exercising regularly is an essential part of staying healthy. Exercise is a great way to reduce stress and improve your mood. The CDC recommends that adults get 150 minutes of moderate exercise each week. This is equal to 30 minutes 5 days per week. Find something you enjoy doing so that you look forward to exercising. Read this article if you want to start a walking routine.
Get enough sleep
Your body needs time to repair and rebuild itself. Lack of sleep leads to poor memory, reduced immunity, weight gain, and depression. Aim for 7-8 hours of quality sleep each day.
My Self-Care Routine
As I mentioned, practicing self-care was not always a priority for me.
However, my life changed when I began to focus on this practice. By taking better care of myself, I feel happier and healthier. And, I’m a better parent, spouse, and friend.
Morning Self-Care Practices:
5:30–6:30 AM: I wake up. I cherish this time because I am the only one up. I take this time to write, meditate, and drink my coffee. The morning sets my day’s tone.
6:30-7: My husband and I discuss the day ahead to ensure that we are on the same page with the schedule.
7-8: I take a walk or go to the gym. The timing of this will change because school is getting ready to start. But, I will still get my morning exercise.
10 AM: I eat something healthy. I am an intermittent faster, so I never eat earlier than this.
Afternoon Self-Care Practices:
2–3 PM: This is my lunchtime, and I take the time to unplug, sit down, and eat properly. I don’t eat at my computer and eat a healthy lunch (no fast food).
Evening self-care routine:
6:00 PM: Eat a healthy dinner. After dinner, I don’t eat any more food.
I then spend a little time cleaning and decluttering. Then I do whatever I need to do to relax, whether going to yoga class or reading a book. I also usually take a second walk in the evening with my husband or daughter.
9:30: I wind down and go to sleep. This part of my routine usually involves a cup of chamomile tea.
As you can see, self-care is vital for our mental, physical, and emotional health. We should make self-care a priority. Be kind to yourself and treat yourself like you would treat your best friend.
A healthy body and mind are the keys to aging well.
What can you do to develop a self-care practice today?