We’re all guilty of it—putting everyone else’s needs before our own. Our loved ones, jobs, and friends all demand our attention and care, but what about us?
In a world that moves a million miles an hour, taking care of ourselves is often put on the back-burner. But the truth is, self-care isn’t a luxury—it’s a necessity and the foundation for a happier, healthier, and more fulfilling life.
While this isn’t to say you should stop taking care of those around you, it’s a reminder that making time and space for self-care and self-love is just as essential. Not sure where to start? We’ve compiled our favorite simple ways to incorporate self-care into your routine.
#1: Keep a Gratitude Journal
Keeping a gratitude journal is a powerful tool for self-care because it helps you focus on the positive things in your life and shift your perspective from negative to positive.
To practice this technique, simply take five minutes in the morning and/or evening to write down a few things in your life that you’re grateful for. This could be anything from a supportive friend, to a beautiful sunset, to a good cup of coffee in the morning. Over time, you’ll find that focusing on gratitude helps you feel more content and satisfied with your life.
#2: Practice Positive Self-Talk
Do you pay attention to the words you say to yourself? How you speak to yourself has a direct impact on your emotional state, confidence, and feelings of self-worth. And if you’re like many people, you probably don’t talk to yourself in the loving, caring way you deserve.
The first step to improving your self-talk is to start paying attention to the statements you say to yourself each day. Catch yourself when you’re talking to yourself in a negative way and immediately reframe those negative thoughts into more positive ones.
For example, if you make a mistake at work, instead of saying “I’m so stupid, I can’t do anything right,” try saying, “I made a mistake, but I’ll learn from it and do things differently next time.” This shift in mindset might seem simple, but it can lead to big changes, namely increased confidence and happiness and reduced stress and anxiety.
#3: Book a Getaway
When was the last time you broke away from your routine? Traveling and exploring new places can be a great way to recharge and refocus on yourself. Whether it’s a trip to a destination on your bucket list or a weekend getaway to a nearby beach, taking a break from your daily routine and immersing yourself in new experiences can help you feel refreshed and rejuvenated.
When booking your next vacation, choose a place that speaks to your interests and promotes a sense of relaxation and adventure.
#4: Make Time to Do Things You Enjoy
Making time for activities and hobbies you enjoy is a crucial part of self-care. Whether it’s playing a sport, reading a book, or taking a yoga class, doing things that bring you joy can help you feel more relaxed, fulfilled, and content.
Schedule time during your week for engaging in activities you enjoy, just like you would with work and family obligations.
#5: Set Boundaries
Setting boundaries is often overlooked as an act of self-care, but when done consistently, this practice can help you better manage your time and energy in a way that supports your overall well-being.
To put this tip into action, take some time to think about what you need in order to feel happy and fulfilled, and then set boundaries around these things.
For example, if you need more personal time after work, you might set a boundary around not answering your phone or responding to emails after a certain time each day. Or if certain people in your life tend to drain your energy, you might set a boundary around only spending a certain amount of time with them.
#6: Get Used to Saying “No”
For many people, saying “no” is difficult. You want to be seen as agreeable and don’t want to inconvenience anyone, but always saying “yes,” even when you’d rather say “no,” can drain your energy and happiness over time.
Start paying attention to the things you’re asked to do each day and think about whether or not you have the time and energy to commit to these things. If not, it’s okay to say “no” or ask someone to help you. By learning to say “no” in a respectful and assertive way, you can better manage your time and energy in a way that supports your well-being.
#7: Support Your Body with Proper Diet and Exercise
Just like a car needs gasoline to run, your body needs proper nutrition and exercise to function at its best. Unfortunately, many people put these self-care essentials on the back-burner due to their busy lifestyles and time spent caring for others.
In reality, eating well and exercising regularly should be non-negotiable parts of your basic self-care routine. Eating a balanced diet filled with whole foods and limiting processed foods will give your body and mind the energy and nutrients they need to tackle each day and maintain their health.
Incorporating regular exercise into your routine is another self-care essential that will help you feel more energized, boost your mood, and safeguard your health. To prevent exercise from feeling like a chore, choose activities you genuinely enjoy, whether it’s yoga, dancing, bike riding, jogging, or swimming.
Step Up Your Self-Care Game with Knew Health
At Knew Health, our focus is on helping you live a healthier, happier life—and that starts with helping you build healthier habits. The goal is to take action before your body and mind start giving your warning signs that something needs attention (i.e. anxiety, burnout, fatigue, digestion woes, health issues, etc.).
If you’re looking for a way to build self-care habits, consider joining Knew Health—a monthly membership service that enables members to receive medical care through medical cost sharing and receive services they can use everyday to prioritize wellness and invest in the care that is right for you.
Our members receive free telemedicine appointments where they can promptly address concerns with a licensed doctor. Knew Health also provides members with free health coaching to establish healthy habits, like exercising, sticking to a sleep schedule, and engaging in relaxation techniques. And there’s an annual allowance to put towards additional health and wellness services.
With these self-care tips and Knew Health in your toolkit, you’ll be well on your way to a life where happiness and good health reign supreme!