24 Sep 15 Self-Care Strategies for Better Work-Life Balance
15 Ways to Practice Self-Care
1. Say No and Stop Over-Committing Yourself
When we keep saying yes, we no longer have time to do the things that we want to do. Instead, we end up doing what other people want us to do. An important act of self-care is standing up for your energy and time when other people are asking too much of you. This means listening to your inner voice, putting your needs first, and being firm in your decision to say no.
2. Identify Your Top Priorities
When you define what’s actually important to you, it becomes easier to focus on doing what matters. Often we spend our time on things that aren’t always productive, which means that we run out of time to practice self-care. Once you’ve defined your top priorities in life (and hopefully self-care is one of them), you’ll be able to schedule your time more easily around it.
3. Practice Self-Reflection
Self-reflection is one of the best ways that you can practice self-care. Self-reflection can help you make sense of your emotions, understand yourself more, and uncover ways to deal with situations positively instead of letting them consume you. Try to find time to reflect a few times a week by writing down what’s on your mind and what’s happened in your life.
4. Focus on Your Basic Needs
Sometimes self-care is a lot more simple than we make it out to be. When we get to the root of it, self-care is about taking care of yourself so that you can be the healthiest version of yourself – mind, body, and soul. If you’re feeling stressed out, ask yourself if you’ve had enough sleep, if you’ve been eating a balanced diet, and if you’ve been moving your body. If the answer is no to any of these things, focus on improving those first before jumping into an elaborate self-care routine.
5. Take Imperfect Action
When we hold ourselves back from doing the things we actually want to do, we can cause ourselves more stress than necessary. Even if taking a leap into the unknown or facing your fear is stressful, holding yourself back will cause you more stress in the long run. Push yourself to try new things every single day, especially little things that will get you closer to your big dreams. Following your heart is an act of self-care, my friend.
6. Find Your Place to Vent
No matter how much you try to keep a positive mindset, there will always be times when you need to vent. No one can be positive all the time, and you shouldn’t feel bad for needing to complain or vent sometimes. Just try to find a place where you can be productive about getting your frustrations out without hurting yourself or another person. Maybe that’s journaling, writing a blog post, calling a friend, dancing, or going for a run.
7. Maximize Your Alone Time
As somebody who feels more energized after I’ve spent some quality time alone, I think it’s super important to actually make the most of it. After all, it can be a rare occurrence to have a moment to ourselves away from work, other people, and responsibilities in general. When you do end up with alone time, try to truly make the most of it. Check something off of your self-care wishlist, do something that energizes or relaxes you, and try to stay away from social media.
8. Create More Stability
Lack of structure can make us feel unmotivated and distracted and often leads to doing everything at the last minute. If we can prevent this, we can reduce a lot of unnecessary stress in our lives. Of course flexibility is important, but structure is necessary for creating a sense of stability and balance in your life. When you create stability and structure in your schedule, you can actually make time for self-care and not feel quite as stressed out all the time.
9. Limit Your Screen Time
I know, I know. You’re tired of hearing about how you should get off your phone. But that’s because it’s so freakin’ important for our mental health and well-being. There’s nothing wrong with scrolling through Instagram, but when you are glued to your phone 24/7 you end up getting nothing done and wasting time that could be spent on self-care. Try to make a conscious effort in the name of self-care to not let your phone take up such a big space in your life.
10. Trust Your Intuition
The biggest disservice you can do to yourself is to ignore that tiny little voice that tells you what you need in your life. Often we ignore our intuition because we try to rationalize our thoughts and talk ourselves into or out of things. When we do this, we only push ourselves away from what we need in life. Instead, ask yourself for advice rather than relying on others. Recognize that you already know the answers to the questions you ask. After all, listening to your intuition is an act of self-care.
11. Get Your Budget in Order
Money is a huge stressor for the majority of us. You’ve probably heard the term “money mindset” floating around, and that’s because it’s important to understand what your relationship to money looks like. Do you have a scarcity mentality or do you believe that money comes freely to you? Either way, an important part of self-care is trying to keep your money stress to a minimum. I recommend reading this post on financial self-care by my friend Sarah so you can feel less overwhelmed with your finances.
12. Give Your Morning Routine a Makeover
Your morning routine sets the tone for the rest of the day. If you’re rushing to get out the door, your day will most likely feel rushed. Taking the extra time for self-care in the morning will help the rest of your day run more smoothly (because no matter what happens the rest of the day, at least you gave yourself some extra care in the morning hours).
13. Feel Your Feelings
Most of us have a tendency to overanalyze our feelings because they don’t always make sense. If we’re constantly trying to come up with a reason for our feelings, we deny ourselves the experience to just feel and connect with our inner selves. Instead, give yourself permission to feel on a daily basis without trying to analyze or eliminate your feelings. By all means, seek to understand your feelings, but try to do so without judgment or attachment.
14. Let Yourself *Truly* Rest
When was the last time you did absolutely nothing? I know firsthand how hard it is to sit in stillness without feeling guilty or lazy about not working. I’ve always been someone who wants to stay busy, even if that’s sitting on the couch and watching a documentary (because my brain doesn’t want to be still, you see). But true relaxation is so important for your well-being, so try making it a priority to unwind properly every single day.
15. Make Your Mind a Blissful Place
As much as you can, try to keep your mind as blissful as possible. Practice meditation, self-reflection, and positive affirmations. Make a conscious effort to find gratitude for the things in your life. Let yourself feel sad when you need to. But do everything you can to continue showing love to yourself and staying present in the moment.