It’s hard to know what constitutes self-care these days, and harder still to make it happen in our overly busy lives.
Part of the problem is the term itself - given that we are all different, it makes sense that each person’s self-care routine is different too. For example, checking in on one’s needs for some means getting more active, going for a long walks in nature to release pent-up thoughts or stress, or socializing with friends and family to restore a sense of being connected to others.
For others, the exact opposite is what’s needed. Anyone who has spent most of their time giving to others, for example, may feel an overwhelming need to spend time alone, not thinking of problems or schedules or even ways to have fun, but instead taking advantage of the quiet to be still and aware of their inner feelings.
In between these two extremes, self-care can also be playing games, being creative or pampered, or simply saying no the next time someone asks you to commit your time to a new project or activity.
It can also be reaching out for help with a problem or experience that feels too big to handle alone.
The possibilities are endless.
However it plays out, self-care is ultimately about loving yourself and giving yourself what you need in the moment. It doesn’t matter what you do, as much as it does that you do it and do it regularly.
If you’ve been on the fence about self-care, consider giving it a try tomorrow in honor of International Self Care Day. The day was deliberately set on July 24 - the 24th day of the seventh month of the year - to emphasize the 24/7 nature of self-care and the need to bring it into our lives every day.
All you really need to do is dip your toes into the self-care waters. Don’t make it complex. Just find something that feels fun and then go do it.
If you’re still looking to learn more about the benefits of self-care, the International Self-Care Foundation has more information including what it calls the seven pillars of good self-care.
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