Self-care is something that many of us aren’t getting enough of, and that can have a real and lasting impact on our mental health. There are many reasons why people ignore their need to care for themselves, and no matter what they are, it isn’t healthy. Self-care isn’t about overindulging in the things that you like and avoiding anything negative, it’s about making sure that you’re getting enough of what you need in your life, and not spending too much of your time and energy on the things that you could do without.
If you work long hours every day and don’t leave yourself enough time to take care of your own interests, this would be a good example of poor self-care. Paying for the bills is important, but finding a way to do it while still enjoying your life is even more important.
The first thing change that everyone should be making right now is how you sleep. If you’re going to work on your own health, then sleep should be one of your top priorities. It’s very easy to trade sleep for your interests, especially when you feel like you can get through the day without the right amount of sleep, but it’s not going to help you out. When you’re lacking sleep, you feel worse, your body struggles to function properly, and you’re not going to enjoy your day as much. Typically, you’re much more irritable when you’re tired and much more susceptible to stress.
It’s important that even if you’re doing a job that doesn’t require much movement, you get up and move around for a bit every day. It doesn’t have to be the most intense workout that you’ve ever done, but keeping your muscles and joints active is not only good for your body but good for your mental health. Consider just going for a short walk around the block, or finding a nice place to take your walks during the day. Getting up and around will help you to maintain your physical health and mental health at the same time. It’s not a cure-all, but it will at least help.
A healthy diet
Just like with our sleep, our body needs what it needs. If you’re not getting the right amount of nutrition, you’re going to feel it. It’s not always going to be an obvious tell-tale sign that you’re missing the nourishment that you need, but you’ll feel it in some way or another.
It’s not about overeating or undereating, it’s about making sure you’re not lacking in things like your vitamins, iron, or protein. You’ll feel more sluggish and tired throughout the day, and you may find yourself more susceptible to injuries or pain. Lacking on these things can lead to serious issues, so find out what you’re missing as soon as possible.
It’s good to make sure that whenever you’re feeling unhealthy, you actually do something about it to ensure there’s nothing wrong. If there is something wrong, it would be much better to know about it before it gets worse. Seeing a doctor can help you to identify the problem and you can visit the right doctor for you to get started on it. If you’ve had a problem that lingers for a few weeks, it’s generally something you should see a doctor about.
Even if it’s something like minor pain, a lingering pain for over a few weeks can be an early sign of something serious going on.
See a therapist
We all have things that we need to work through and process, and keeping them on board isn’t always the best way to go about it. Even if you feel like you can keep it in, having issues stuck in your head can lead to even bigger problems with your mental health. Seeing a therapist about these issues to talk and discuss the things that you have problems with can help you to get past them and process them healthily.
People see therapists over things that have happened long in the past, and it doesn’t matter how long ago something was – some things don’t just go away. Childhood experiences can lead to problems later in life – so get to a therapist if you feel you need someone to talk to about these experiences.
While self-care isn’t necessarily about overindulging yourself in the things that you like, sometimes it’s great to treat yourself to something nice. You shouldn’t go overboard, but if you can reward yourself for making it through something tough, it will help you to feel a bit more positive. For example, if you’ve had a difficult week, consider splashing out on something that you know you’ll like. You’ve earned a treat every now and then, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with providing that for yourself.
Try a new hobby
Sometimes when you’re stuck in your head, it can help to get out there and try something new. Experiencing new things like a hobby can help you to learn something about yourself, and you could find something that’s therapeutic or easy for you to enjoy. When you’ve got something new and exciting in your life to look forward to, it can make difficult experiences much easier to work through.
Make time for yourself
People who work long hours as well as try to make time for their friends and family might start to feel like they’ve got no time for themselves. It can be hard to choose between your responsibilities and looking after yourself, other people might need a hand. Even if that is the case, you have just as much right to help as those you love. You shouldn’t ignore when your loved ones need help, but instead, you should recognize when you’re not in a position to actually be of help. It’s no good helping someone if it just contributes to you falling further into a worse mental state.