Tending to your mental and emotional needs is a vital part of self-care. Although it’s wonderful to devote some of your resources to caring for others, you can only be at your best when you learn how to appropriately prioritize your own well-being. Here are ten ways to boost your happiness and improve your energy reserves by practicing better self-care.
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1. Learn How To Say “No”
Making friends and trying new things certainly foster personal development, but it’s important to know when to decline an offer. You’ll start to burn out if you’re so busy that you never have a chance to process anything that happens to you. Take a look at your schedule before you decide whether you have the time to do something, and remember that you can often reschedule social invitations.
2. Love Your Body
Everyone has parts of their body that they don’t like, but think about how others see you and increase your focus on the things that draw compliments. For example, perhaps people often praise your bright eyes or note your long legs. In addition, be mindful of the ways in which your body has served you well – perhaps it has allowed you to play sports, have children or explore beautiful places.
3. Turn Your Attention To The Present
Meditating is one of the most effective ways to connect with the present moment, but anything that keeps you focused on your current experiences is good for your emotional health. Running or swimming may work well, or you might find some solace in a mindfulness exercise that focuses on releasing tension in each part of your body in turn.
4. Pay Attention To Seasonal Shifts
The weather will play a role in determining the best ways to boost your mental health. While the warmer months are perfect for a reflective, relaxing stroll in the park, that same walk can make you feel freezing cold and miserable during the winter. Restorative activities perfect for chilly days include reading a book by candlelight, taking a long soak in a bubble bath or making a decadent hot chocolate drink.
5. Make Space For Laughter
Practicing self-care isn’t always a terribly serious endeavor! Laughter is a great way to get rid of stress, and it makes you feel good by promoting the production of endorphins. Seek out favorite movies or TV shows that always give you the giggles, spend time with witty people who know how to make you smile and don’t be too proud to laugh at yourself too.
6. Take Vacations When You Can
Many people find that their self-worth is intimately connected to job performance, making it particularly hard for them to disconnect from their career. However, people who work too hard eventually perform more poorly and may end up feeling low. When you have the chance to take a vacation, seize that opportunity and do things that are truly relaxing.
7. Enjoy A Massage
Whether you take advantage of a friend or partner’s skilled hands or book an appointment at a spa, having a massage works wonders for the body and the mind. As well as relaxing tight muscles, having a luxurious massage can be a way of acknowledging that you are worth taking care of. If you are going to a spa or a salon, be sure to ask for the most calming treatment they have to offer.
8. Know That Your Are Intrinsically Valuable
It can be hard to acknowledge that you are valuable no matter what other people think of you, but try not to define your worth according to what you can do for others. Remember that negative reactions to who you are what you say will often say a lot more about the person who is judging you. When someone says something cutting or tries to make you feel bad, try to see their remarks in the context of their own insecurities.
9. Make Time To Reflect On Your Inner Life
If you’ve always enjoyed keeping a journal then you probably already make time for reflection, but if you know you sometimes lose touch with your own needs then it’s smart to do something to rectify this. Even just 10 minutes spent reviewing the day and thinking about how you really feel can help you to make sense of your experiences and take better care of yourself.
10. Prioritize Your Passions
Finally, it’s easy to let hobbies and interests slide when you have a busy life, but making your passions a key part of everyday life is a vital aspect of self-care. Set aside a manageable amount of time each day or week, and don’t let anything but your favorite pursuits fill that space.