Busy women take on more than one career, have children, and keep their relationships going. So it's no wonder they can become overwhelmed with the daily demands of life. The ideas I have outlined in this article are a good start to adding some balance to your busy day.
I will cover some of the important areas of self-care that can help women stay sane while juggling working, running a home, and caring for children. I will cover why self-care is important, its benefits, and simple things you can do daily to improve or establish your self-care routine. I will cover mental health issues such as stress, and self-esteem. I will cover simple ways to change your diet to improve your mental and physical health without actually dieting. I will even cover some creative and artistic ways you can practice self-care.
The Importance of Self Care
Self-care involves taking better care of yourself, which is essential for mental and physical purposes. It can really make a positive impact on your life, from helping you to become closer to friends and family, to relieving your stress. Here are some of the top benefits of self-care.
It Helps to Relieve Stress
If you are like most people, you probably deal with a lot of stress. This can be stress from your job, financial situation, relationships, or other personal reasons. Self-care is important for stress relief because it provides activities that help distract you, improve your mood, and help you take better care of yourself. Keep in mind that self-care can be anything from taking a bath to going for a walk, so there are tons of options available.
You Can Improve Your Mental Health
In addition to relieving your stress, self-care can also help in other aspects of your mental health. Perhaps you have anxiety or depression and are trying to relax while also figuring out your triggers. Well, things like writing in a journal and walking help you accomplish both. You can focus more on your mental health during these activities, so you are practicing self-care while actually improving your mental health at the same time.
It Raises Your Self Esteem
Did you know taking better care of yourself can help with your self-esteem? Lack of proper self-care often causes you to feel bad about yourself, such as from not getting a manicure or pedicure in a while, or not exercising. These types of activities make you feel healthy, fit, and beautiful, which goes a long way with self-care. With higher self-esteem, you raise your confidence, and that can help boost your mood and help with your stress levels.
You Deserve Some Quality Time
Don't underestimate the power of having quality time to yourself. There are so many ways to do this, whether you allow yourself some time to meditate in the morning, get up early to have your cup of coffee alone, or have dance parties in the living room with your family. This quality time gives you a short break from your daily life and can be so wonderful for your self-care.
Try to give yourself at least a few minutes a day for self-care. It will help your stress and other areas of mental health.
Simple Everyday Ways to Take Care of Yourself
Self-care is vitally important not just for stress relief but also for overall mental health. It can do everything from help after a bad day to improve your self-confidence. There are several ways to stay healthy while you're busy, and you might be surprised by how many simple things you do each day that help you maintain your health.
As a busy woman myself, the idea of taking time for myself can be daunting. I've been hearing from readers that they want to spend more time self-soothing. Here are some ways to make this happen!
Keep a Journal
A really excellent way to start practicing self-care every day is to keep a journal. This is something you can easily keep with you no matter where you are, whether you put it in your purse or briefcase, or you have a digital journal on your computer. It is good to have something to write in even when your laptop is out of charge, so a journal and pen are highly recommended. With journaling, you can write in it whenever you feel stressed or just to talk about your day. It can be very cathartic for you.
Have Alone Time Every Day
Make sure you have at least a few minutes each day all to yourself. This can be a 30-minute walk that you go on after dinner, a fun 15-minute dance party all alone in your room before bed, or just 5 minutes in the morning before everyone else gets up while you enjoy your cup of coffee. It can seem so simple and minimal, but these little stretches of time where you are alone and just doing something for yourself can make all the difference.
Get More Exercise
Sometimes helping your physical health is also important, so don't forget about exercise. This will make you feel better about yourself and raise your self-confidence, which also helps your mental state. Plus, exercise is really good for helping to relieve your stress and the endorphins you get from it can be tremendous for improving your mood. You don't need to go to the gym for an hour every day either. Something as simple as an afternoon walk or doing weight lifting in the morning before your shower is perfect. You can also take advantage of other activities that also include exercise, like taking your dog for longer walks or taking the kids hiking over the weekend so everybody is exercising more.
In addition to exercise, you should also be focusing on a proper diet by drinking more water and eating healthier. This is part of taking better care of yourself.
Start a Self Care Morning Routine
If you want to pay more attention to yourself and practice self-care, it helps to start by working on your morning routine. If you are just hopping out of bed, grabbing breakfast, and running out the door, you are probably already stressed by the time you get into your car. A healthier option is to start a better morning routine with these tips.
Read a Few Pages in a Book
If you can set your alarm for an earlier time, it gives you the chance to catch up on your reading. Find a book that is inspirational and helps motivate you for the day. Read just a few pages or a whole chapter, depending on how much free time you have. This is so easy to do while you are having your morning coffee. Take advantage of these quiet moments and become absorbed in your favorite book.
Have Quiet Time With Coffee
Whether you drink coffee or tea in the morning, you can make this part of your self-care ritual. Try to have your first cup of coffee in the morning all alone and in silence. You can read a paper, write in your journal, or sit on your patio and listen to the birds chirping as the sun comes up. This is another great reason to wake up a little earlier than everyone else in your household. You will be amazed b how much better you feel with just a few minutes to yourself.
Unplug Your Devices
When you are trying to start a new morning routine for self-care purposes, you should unplug all devices. Don't try to enjoy a few minutes to yourself by using your cell phone or checking email. Checking social media too much can also be more stressful. You should turn all electronics off during your self-care time in the morning and not turn them on until you absolutely need them. A good practice to start is to turn your cell phone off after the alarm goes off to wake you up in the morning.
The morning is also the ideal time to meditate and repeat mantras. Mantras are sayings or words that help to center your focus and make it easier to meditate. You can also try breathing exercises or traditional meditation. If you want to take a walk in the morning, that can also help you to meditate.
Dietary Changes to Make For Self Care
Changing your diet is important for so many reasons, not just physical health or weight loss. It can also improve your mental health and help a lot with stress, anxiety, and depression. Here are some dietary changes to make when working on better self-care.
Drink More Water
There are practically an endless amount of benefits to drinking more water, and self-care is one of them. When you want to take better care of yourself, drinking water to hydrate should be one of your top priorities. It is great for diet and physical health, which in turn can help with your mental health as well. Sometimes, when you are extremely stressed out or having an episode of anger toward someone, sitting alone to drink a glass of water can do wonders for you.
Fill Up On Nutritious Food
Another way to change your diet for self-care is to fill up on healthier options before eating the less healthy options. This means you are not sticking to a diet, but just trying to add more healthy options like fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, and whole grains. If you find that you have a lot of cravings for sweet and salty foods, skip the cookies and fast food, and instead opt for a handful of nuts with a few pieces of dark chocolate. Or if you are going to a party, fill up on veggies and fruit first before going for the less healthy party foods.
Eat More Superfoods
Another good way to eat healthier diet while focusing on self care is to eat superfoods. This is another good way to avoid being on a diet, just try to follow a healthier eating routine. There are many different superfoods you can try, from fruits and vegetables, to lean protein, nuts, seeds, and even dark chocolate. Here are some superfoods to consider:
- Dark chocolate
- Dark leafy greens like kale and spinach (I love spinach raw or sauteed with onions & green peppers in a little light olive oil)
- Strawberries and blueberries
- Almonds, cashews, walnuts
- Chia seeds
- Pomegranate seeds
- Wild salmon or tuna
Find Healthy Comfort Food
If you want to eat healthier, but prefer comfort food, you can still do this! You don't have to eat nothing but salads and fish just to eat healthy. There are lots of ways to take your favorite comfort foods and make them healthier. For example, you can make meatloaf by using half ground beef and half ground turkey or make veggie or turkey burgers. I make my turkey burgers exactly like a hamburger but I add chopped portabello mushrooms for even more flavor. This way you can get even more veggies in your body.
Creative and Artistic Ways to Practice Self Care
Not all self-care activities involve going for a walk or meditating. There are also quite a few creative activities that will channel your inner artist or writer and still provide excellent self-care benefits. Here are some creative and artistic activities to help you practice self-care.
Get a Coloring Book
Adult coloring books have been popular for a while, and they are definitely not going anywhere. There are now many different types of coloring books, depending on what you are interested in. You can get gardens and flowers, animals and creatures, or even coloring books with curse words to have a little fun with them. This allows you to be creative and de-stress by simply coloring and not having to worry about anything.
Try Drawing or Painting
Here is another super-easy way to be creative and artistic, but also practice self-care. Self-care doesn't have any hard or fast rules. It is simply about doing activities that make you feel good about yourself and can distract you from what is causing you stress and help you spend more time focusing on yourself. You want to make sure all your time is not spent working, cleaning, or taking care of your kids. You should also have some hobbies and activities you truly enjoy just for yourself. Grab a sketchbook and some art tools to draw, sketch, or paint as you wish.
Learn a New Craft
What better way to express your creative side than to learn something brand new? This is the perfect opportunity to get out there and try a new craft or form of art. You don't have to be naturally artistic to be creative and enjoy any type of creative activity. Doing the activity isn't the only way to take better care of yourself, but also in learning how to do it. Think of some hobbies you always wondered about, like oil painting, making jewelry or metal stamping, or giving sewing or knitting a try.
Not all forms of being creative for self-care have to do with art and crafts projects. You can also start writing, which can be very therapeutic for you. This can be anything from writing in a journal to writing short stories or working on a novel. One good practice to start writing is to set a timer for 8-10 minutes, then just start writing whatever comes to mind. Continue writing without taking a break until the timer goes off.
If you’re anything like me, you’re just as busy trying to keep your life in order as you are running it. Sometimes the pressure of juggling your everyday tasks and responsibilities is just too much to bear. But by adopting some or all of these tips, you can establish your own self-care routine and stay on track with your health and wellness.