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Self-Care - The Essentials

Updated: Apr 25, 2022

Self-care = the actions you take to look after all aspects of your health and wellbeing.

Self-care is one of the most important things we can do for ourselves, our colleagues, and our loved ones. Regular self care will help you live the life that is most important and meaningful to you. I believe that looking after your whole wellbeing is likely to make you more engaged and efficient at work, help you feel better within yourself, increase your enjoyment of the things that are important to you, and prevent burnout. But so many people don’t know what self-care is and even those who know what it is, have trouble prioritising it.

If you think self care means bubble baths, candles, and relaxing music, it isn’t surprising you might not always make time to do it!

Your self-care can be broken up into six core aspects of your wellbeing:



Hopefully these words will stick with you, so you can quickly check in how you’re going in each domain. You might also relate to other labels for these categories such as psychological/emotional wellbeing, physical/health, spiritual, employment/education, social/relationships, and leisure/hobbies. Use whatever labels will help you remember to check in on all areas of your wellbeing!


Below you’ll find a brief summary of each of these domains and some initial examples to get you thinking. If you’d like to learn more, make sure you’ve signed up to receive the details of the Self-Care Basics Workshop where you’ll receive a lot more information to develop your very own self-care plan.


Mind

Looking after your mind involves taking care of your mental health or psychological wellbeing. This includes managing your thoughts, physical feelings, and emotions. When you make an effort to look after your mental health, you notice a huge difference in your life. Some examples of doing this include:

  • Keeping a journal to express your thoughts and feelings at the end of each day

  • Acknowledge your achievements for the day

  • Being present in the moment and paying less attention to thoughts of the past or worries of the future

  • Seeing a psychologist or mental health professional to help you get unstuck from thoughts or emotions

  • Reflecting on your thought and emotional patterns and increasing your self-awareness

  • Expressing how you feel to someone else

  • Mindfulness

Access our guided relaxation and meditations to help you look after your mind!


Body

Looking after your body involves taking care of your health and your physical body. Your mind and body are not separate entities, so if you’re not looking after your body, you know you won’t be feeling great in your emotions or thoughts. Your body is often the earliest queue that your mind isn’t doing well, so looking after it well can help maintain your mental wellbeing. When you look after your body as best as possible, it also allows you to live the life that is most important to you. Some examples of looking after your physical wellbeing include:

  • Moving your body! This might be exercising, workouts, runs, walks, or it might be dancing around your living room to your favourite playlist!

  • Cooking yourself a nurturing meal with all your favourite vegetables

  • Going to the doctor or dentist regularly for check-ups

  • Eating a balanced, nutritious diet that suits you

  • Sleeping well

  • Calming your body through relaxation exercises

  • Nurturing your body with beautifully scented skin products

  • Getting a massage


Soul

Your soul goals are the ones that really make you feel good deep down! When you’re hitting your soul goals, you’re connecting with what’s really important to you in your life. Sometimes this is referred to as your spiritual self care, but this doesn’t mean religious spirituality, it means your sense of meaning. Examples of soul goals might include:

  • Getting out in nature

  • Meditating

  • Taking time for some self reflection

  • Journalling

  • Reading inspiring books or quotes

  • Doing something that gives you a sense of purpose

  • Giving back to the community by volunteering

  • Writing a gratitude journal

  • Listening to a podcast that inspires you to dream like our Courageous Living Podcast!


Work

We spend at least 50% of our waking hours at work, so we need to spend just as much effort on setting self care goals in this area of our life. When I talk about ‘work’, I mean your primary role(s) that you spend lots of your time doing, such as a paid job, caring for family, taking care of household tasks, voluntary roles, or studying. You can take care of yourself within work by:

  • Leaving work on time

  • Connecting with your sense of meaning within your working role

  • Taking your lunch break

  • Speaking with a mentor

  • Getting regular good supervision

  • Learning something new related to work (e.g., professional development courses)

  • Setting boundaries for your working hours and workload

  • Making time to chat with colleagues

  • Engaging in rewarding projects or tasks

Register for our Work Life Balance Workshops coming soon!


People

Humans are naturally drawn to community and connection. We’re hardwired to do this, it’s how we’ve survived for millions of years. So connecting with others is a crucial part of looking after yourself. This might include:

· Making time to speak to friends

· Doing activities with friends or family in person (when allowed, written in lockdown era!)

· Planning a date night with your partner (if applicable)

· Replying to messages or emails

· Telling others how you feel

· Doing something for someone else

· Asking for help


Play

Life doesn’t have to be so serious, so don’t forget that looking after yourself also includes having fun, finding joy, and enjoying play! This includes engaging in hobbies, making your downtime count so that you’re spending it exactly as you want to be, making time for humour, doing the things that bring you joy. For some people, this includes:

· Painting

· Listening to music

· Watching a funny TV show or movie

· Taking their dog for a walk and laughing at their quirky behaviour

· Reading

· Arts and crafts


At Inner Sage we want to support you to look after your whole wellbeing. But we know this can be a little overwhelming to know where to start. So we’ve done the hard work for you, and starting your self care journey is as easy as doing our Self-Care – The Basics Workshop coming to you soon!

 

fiona

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