Self-care comes in many forms depending on the individual in need, however, everyone at some point should pay more attention to their wellbeing.  Some may think of self-care as a time period set aside for self-indulgence such as: a trip to a luxurious spa, lavish shopping spree, or delectable dinner. However, the true essence of self-care stems from the desire to mentally, physically, emotionally, or spiritually rejuvenate one’s well-being. Self-care can be our number one priority.  The need for self-care has increased in importance, in just this year alone, due to the pandemic/quarantine, decreased social interaction, attending school/work from home and many other stressful factors.  There are three great ways to prioritize self-care daily: stick to a routine, maintain/adopt healthy habits, and try new things.  

A routine

A routine is an essential component of daily self-care.  Northwestern Medicine supports this notion in the article titled, “Health Benefits Of Having A Routine”, by suggesting routines lead to improved stress levels, better sleep patterns, and overall improved health (Northwestern Medicine).  A daily routine may consist of getting adequate sleep, maintaining personal hygiene, remaining engaged in work or social (though, virtual) activities, and keeping up with household and auto maintenance.  The key factor that makes a routine vital to self-care is the balance it provides to individuals to efficiently make the most of time and decrease stress levels.  This concept coincides with the next self-care technique maintaining or adopting healthy habits.

Adopting healthy habits

When it comes to living a healthier lifestyle, sometimes diet and exercise are two of the first ideas to come to mind.  Though monitoring water intake and jogging can lead to optimum physical health; there are other ways to develop healthy habits.  Psychology Today recommends unplugging from social media in the article, “For Your Consideration: Unplug from Social Media” (Aalai, 2020).  Nowadays, it may also be necessary to unplug from news sources as well if reports increase anxiety or higher stress levels.  During the time spent unplugged from social media or around the clock news report, one may find the time to explore a new hobby.

Exploring a new hobby has both healthy and financial implications. Financially, it could lead to the discovery of a talent and help launch a side business. From a health perspective a new hobby can increase creativity and relaxation. Overall, self-care should be a high-priority to maintain a balanced and healthy lifestyle which can be obtained through the proper lifestyle changes.

Nate Ross is a therapist at Lynnwood Pacific Mental Health. He is currently accepting new patients. You can schedule an appointment with him, or one of our other mental health professionals here.

Works Cited

Aalai, A. (2020, February 24). For Your Consideration: Unplug from Social Media. Psychology Today. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-first-impression/202002/your-consideration-unplug-social-media

Have a Hobby for Your Health. Adventist HealthCare. https://www.adventisthealthcare.com/living-well/have-a-hobby-for-your-health/

Northwestern Medicine. (n.d.). Health Benefits of Having a Routine. Retrieved December 1, 2020, from https://www.nm.org/healthbeat/healthy-tips/health-benefits-of-having-a-routine