Self-care is a term that has been swirling around the internet for quite some time but it has become even more popular in recent years. And after an interesting and challenging year we’ve all had (2020), I think it’s safe to say that more self-care has definitely been added to the top of many of our to-do lists – including mine! ;-)
So what is self-care?
Merriam-Webster defines self-care as health care provided by oneself, often without the consultation of a medical professional. So that means the different ways in which you can personally take care of your physical and mental health – typically in the form of more holistic remedies like to eat well, meditate, exercise, etc.
The good thing about self-care is that it comes in many different shapes and sizes. And the even better thing about self-care is that you can tailor it to your personal needs. With that being said, I’d like to share a list of self-care tips with you that you can try this year, all to help you embody a little more self-love and create healthy habits that stick. So are you ready to change up your days with a new daily practice or ritual? Well, here are 52 things you can do each week this year (or each day if you’re feeling ambitious) for continued self care:
1. Watch the sunrise - There’s nothing like getting the day started soaking in those warm, sunny rays (and the perfect morning pick-me-up!).
2. Set a sleep schedule - This could be committing to getting a solid 8 hours of sleep every night or waking up/going to bed at the same time every day. Getting proper sleep helps keep you in a better mood and improves your work performance during the day.
3. Sit up straight - Taking a moment to reset and adjust your posture can help to open up the heart chakra keeping your energetic frequencies around the heart healthy.
4. Drink plenty of water - Aim for a gallon of water a day using this motivational water bottle to keep you sharp, satisfied, and energized.
5. Have a home-cooked meal - Make that delicious recipe you’ve been meaning to try using fresh ingredients.
6. Morning tea - Take 20 minutes to enjoy some quiet time with a cup of tea first thing in the morning (remember, no phone or outside distractions!)
7. Recite positive affirmations - Improve self-esteem and mental strength by looking in the mirror and showing yourself some love using affirmation statements.
8. Skip the morning phone check - Instead of turning to your phone when you first wake up, leave it right where it is and start your day doing something else - like exercise or meditation.
9. Clear out the clutter - Spend 30 minutes organizing and clearing out unnecessary clutter to create space for more calming, free-flowing energy.
10. Donate old clothes - Instead of tossing old clothes, opt to donate to someone else in need.
11. Play with a pet - Bring on the snuggle session with your favorite furry companion.
12. Activate the senses - Light a scented candle and breathe in soothing smells to help reduce stress and ease anxiety.
13. Give a compliment - It’s free! :-)
14. Move your body - Help control your weight and reduce the risk of disease by getting daily exercise. Unfortunately, poor physical health can lead to increased mental health issues too.
15. Eat well - By eating clean, your body turns certain foods and nutrients into serotonin, which improves anxiety and prevents mood swings.
16. Trust your gut - Practice self-care from the inside out by nourishing your body with gut-loving foods, supplements, and probiotics.
17. Make your bed - Instantly feel more organized and put together by tidying up your bed. This is a great way to set the tone for a productive day ahead.
18. Stretch - Take regular stretch breaks throughout the day (or even practice yoga) for an instant mood and energy boost.
19. Dance - The next time you hear your favorite song, get up and dance like no one is watching! This is an easy way to activate your muscles and get the blood flowing!
20. Sing - Not only does singing improve lung function, but it happens to also be a stress-reliever. So let it all out and sing, like no one can hear you!
21. Take a nap - Be kind to yourself and listen to your body when you feel it’s time for a break.
22. Take a walk in nature - This is a great way to get yourself grounded and practice mindfulness, especially paying close attention to your senses and surroundings.
23. Random act of kindness - Operating from a place of kindness and compassion is an incredible way to not only spread love but receive back even more good vibes in return.
24. Mid-day meditation - Start with just a few minutes each day to quiet the chatter and meditate. This is a great way to refocus and reset if you’re feeling overwhelmed.
25. Listen to music - Just like you use music in your Mind Movies to put you in an elevated state, casually listening to music is a great way to boost your energetic frequency and keep your spirits high.
26. Remove one bad habit - And replace it with a healthier one! Like giving up sugar and eating more healthy fats or replacing coffee with tea.
27. Accountability partner - Consider weekly check-ins with a friend to hold each other accountable on various goals like nutrition, exercise, sleep, etc.
28. Video chat with a friend - Social self-care is important too, so make sure you are getting enough face-to-face time with your favorite people (even if it’s virtual).
29. Self-reflection - It’s a great habit to look inward and ask yourself the kind of questions that challenge you to uncover more about what you want out of life.
30. Take time off - If you are able to, make use of sick leave or time off to give yourself a chance to reset. This is especially important for mental health, as it helps to alleviate burnout.
31. Brainstorm sessions - Dedicate time for brainstorming new ideas, goals, and action steps that bring you closer to your goals.
32. Make a list of short-term goals - This is great to do at the start of the week and checkoff throughout. Having a list of goals to reference helps keep you focused and on track.
33. Make a list of long term goals - Consider creating a new Mind Movie to get those big picture goals activated and in motion.
34. A word a day - You’re never too old to learn something new! Commit to learning a new word or concept each day to keep your brain and long-term memory in tip-top shape.
35. Read a book - Research something on a brand new topic to help improve brain connectivity and comprehension. Reading is also a great stress-reducer.
36. Listen to a new podcast - Consider a podcast on a topic you know nothing about to help open up your imagination.
37. Do your laundry - Instead of letting clothes and linens pile up, be sure to do laundry regularly to remove bacteria, dirt, and reduce the incidence of infectious diseases.
38. Make a playlist - Love music? Round up and listen to your favorite songs that keep you vibrating at the highest frequency.
39. Watch a movie - Wind down and relax with a good laugh from a funny movie or opt for a classic movie you’ve never seen before.
40. Shower meditation - This is a great time to practice mindfulness to not only clean your body but your mind too.
41. Make something with your hands - Like a piece of art or even a hand-written letter. You never know, you may unlock a new hidden talent!
42. Social media cleanse - Don’t be afraid to unfollow those who lower your energetic frequency.
43. Take a drive or a road trip - Even if it’s just you and the open road, this is a great time to think, unwind, change up your scenery, and be inspired by your new surroundings.
44. Watch the sunset - Not only does this give you a reason to go outside, but watching the sunset is a relaxing and healthy way to wind down after a long day.
45. Log off - Give yourself a social media cleanse each day by implementing a strict ‘log off’ time for you to completely disconnect and give yourself a mental break.
46. Say ’No’ - Say yes to boundaries and valuing the importance of your time by saying no to what does not serve you. Although it may be hard or feel strange, saying no is a sign of respect.
47. Text an old friend - Even if it’s just to say hello or reminisce about old times, reconnecting can instantly put a smile on your face (and theirs).
48. Have some dessert - Without overindulging, enjoy (or even make) your favorite dessert to put you in a good mood.
49. Make a gratitude list - As a great way to finish off the day, write down everything you’re grateful for that happened that day in a journal or as a list.
50. Do not disturb - Cut down on unnecessary distractions or disruptions by putting your phone on vibrate or do not disturb mode. This is going to give you the added peace and quiet you need to stay focused.
51. Go to bed early - Turning in early helps you wake up feeling energized and rejuvenated, along with aiding in immune support.
52. Sleep in - Because you deserve it!
The important thing to remember is that self-care isn’t just for Sundays. You can practice your version of self-care all of the time (and I highly encourage it!). You see, the things we do for self-care can eventually become the healthy habits we embrace every day. But the key is digging a little deeper and doing the inner work to make sure your self-care practice works for you.
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The Free Flow Meditation is the perfect tool to help you maintain an abundant mindset, regardless of what’s going on around you. Access this incredible meditation here and be ready to take on anything you want this year!
Natalie Ledwell is a best selling author, speaker and successful entrepreneur. She's passionate about helping others to achieve their greatest dreams and ambitions through her personal development programs and her online TV show, The Inspiration Show.