Self-care is not selfish. What’s actually selfish is not practicing self-care and self-love, because practicing self-care means you are able to turn up as your best self.
Self-love is something that should be practiced daily and can take a lifetime to master. But by incorporating even just a few minutes of self-care and self-love every day, we create a healthy relationship with ourselves which helps us grow and live our fullest lives.
Self-care often gets associated with long walks on the beach or bubble baths and trips to the spa. But there’s so much more to it than just that. Let’s break down the five aspects of self-care and learn the importance of practicing self-love in all areas of life.
Our mind can either be our ally or worst critic that hinders us from growth. The thoughts in our head can be a mess – especially if we don’t tend to them. It is important that we pay attention to our thoughts because our thoughts affect our emotions, actions, and habits.
The tiny voice in our head can be our worst critic. We need to give our inner critic space to be heard, while ensuring that we make it our friend and not our worst enemy. It’s a matter of recognizing when the inner critic isn’t being helpful. We can do this by using the THINK acronym. Run your inner critic through the gates of THINK.
Is what your inner critic saying:
- T: True
- H: Helpful
- I: Inspiring
- N: Necessary
- K: Kind
Mental self-care includes cultivating loving thoughts instead of feeding the inner critic in our minds.
Emotional self-care is identifying, expressing, and accepting a range of feelings. We can practice emotional self-care by making time to reflect on our feelings and emotions, practicing self-compassion, saying “no” to the things we don’t want to do, and being aware of our emotional boundaries.
Your physical self-care involves getting active, eating the right food, getting enough rest and staying hydrated. It includes moving your body by doing physical activities that you enjoy- like a run, yoga, or your favorite sport. Physical self-care includes listening to your body’s hunger and fullness cues, nourishing your body with healthy food, and staying hydrated. These may seem simple and common sense to do, but a lot of times we neglect this aspect of self-care when we have so much going on in our lives. This aspect of self-care is the most straightforward one and it comes down to making sure that your body is well-nourished and happy.
When was the last time you nurtured your spirit? Having beliefs and values that are important to you and guide your life is essential for us as human beings. Spiritual self-care includes meditating, practicing gratitude, or taking a break from the news and social media.
Gratitude is very powerful and grounding. Try writing down three things you are grateful for every day. By practicing gratitude, you’ll find that your stress or anxiety dissipates because you are focused on the good things in your life.
Taking time for spiritual self-care is soul-fulfilling. It encourages introspection and offers clarity. Spiritual self-care are practices that connect you to your true self – the real you.
Indulgent self-care doesn’t have to be expensive things like trips to the salon or day spas. It can be as simple as your daily cup of coffee, going for a walk, or a bubble bath. It’s whatever lights you up and whatever you need to fill your cup up. By looking after your physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual needs, your indulgent ones will even be more enjoyable because you really allow yourself that time to experience this time just for you.
In conclusion, one size doesn’t fit all when it comes to self-care. We all have our own unique and varying needs.
What IS most important is that you find time to discover what makes you happy and by doing so, we start living a life of abundance in every aspect of our lives.
Now I want to turn it over to you. What is one thing you’re going to do this week to show yourself some self-care? Do you feel you need some indulgent self-care this week or is emotional self-care more important to your well-being right now? Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below.