Unplug & Get Connected: The Power of Self Care

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  “You can’t pour from an empty cup. Take care of yourself first.” 

All too often we neglect our own self-care. We often use the phrase such as “we have to take care of others, and then I will take care of me.” We carry around the belief that self-care is selfish. When in fact, we require TLC (Tender, Love & Care). When we do not take adequate care of our physical, mental or emotional health, we started to feel depleted, drained or frazzled. For some reason, participating in self-care is considered a luxury due to increasing workloads, school and family obligations.   In reality, self-care is an investment we cannot live without. The goal is to create a balance between selfishness and sacrifice. There are three (3) components to identifying self-care are a) Physical, b) mental/emotional and c) spiritual. The physical involves moving our bodies; the mental/emotional requires us to accept and forgive ourselves, and the spiritual allows us to practice exercising our mind and soul. Have you participated any of the three components of self-care?

Here’s a list of 30 self-care activities that you can participate in today. Over the next 30 days, I challenge you to participate in all 30 or jump around to the activities that you like the most or develop your own ideas.   Compare how you felt before with how you feel after.

(1) Eat a fruit or vegetable

(2) Get between 6 – 8 hours of sleep per night

(3) Ride a bike

(4) Call a friend or meet for lunch

(5) Try a new activity

(6) Read a Chapter from a book

(7) Get a massage

(8) Listen to music

(9) Stare up at the sky

(10) Take action on something you have been avoiding

(11) Take a lunch break

(12) Plant a flower

(13) Write in a journal

(14) Volunteer

(15) Laugh when you can

(16) Read poetry or inspiring quotes

(17) List five things you are grateful for

(18) Get a manicure or pedicure

(19) Pray

(20) Meditate

(21) Spend time away from your cell phone

(22) Eat a piece of Chocolate

(23) Stretching

(24) Dance

(25) Go for a walk

(26) Take hot shower or bath

(27) Pay attention to your breathing

(28) Snuggle under a cozy blanket

(29) Cuddle with a pet

(30) Become a tourist in your own city

 

By Shayla Peterson, LCSW

References:

Eight plus self-care ideas by Barbara Markaway, PhD at www.theselfcompassionproject.com ( June 2013)

Seven Types of Self-Care Activities for Coping with Stress by Barbara Markaway, PhD and Greg Markaway, PhD on Psychology Today (March 2014)

Top 10 Self-care strategies by Laura Schenck, MA on Mindfulness Muse (May 2011)

 

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