We talked a lot about self-care in the Confidence Challenge, but it occurred to me as I was going through the posts that we never really defined what self-care is. In this new series, let’s correct that and do a deep dive into self-care, what it is, and why it’s good for you.
Self-care is the act of taking care of yourself. It is doing exactly what you need to do to not only feel your best, but to live your best life. This includes caring for yourself mentally, physically, and emotionally. And it’s as individual as we are.
Everyone has their own way to practice self-care. This can be anything from quitting your exhausting job, to getting your hair done, or ensuring you have time to read each evening before bed.
Taking care of yourself should not be overlooked. I call it one of the three pillars of self-confidence along with accepting yourself, and believing in yourself. Of the three, self-care is the one that invites the most concrete action, and probably the one that you can get results from the quickest.
Self-care starts with knowing yourself
Is there really a benefit to taking care of yourself?
The answer to that is a resounding YES!
There are many benefits that result from a self-care routine. If you are not taking care of yourself eventually it can lead to health problems, overwhelming stress, lack of confidence, less productivity at work and even cause deteriorating relationships with family and friends.
To really understand self-care, you need to understand yourself first. Ask yourself these questions to gain some clarity.
- What are the things I need to do to feel complete?
- What activities help me relieve stress?
- Is there anything I can eliminate from my daily schedule that is preventing me from taking care of myself?
- Am I happy with my exercise routine and am I eating healthy?
How you answer these questions determines your self-care needs. Once you have defined your needs, the next step is to add time for self-care into your schedule and take action in order to reap the benefits.
Benefits of self-care
Self-care is extremely beneficial for optimal health. Let’s look at a few of the amazing benefits you’ll experience over time.
Increased Positive Mindset
Adding self-care activities to your schedule will give you something to look forward to. When you’re stuck on thinking about how badly your day is going, knowing you have a date with yourself to read a good book or get your nails done after work, gives you something positive to focus on instead.
When you practice self-care, you are making your own needs a top priority and that is a good thing. Self-confidence will naturally increase because you are simply doing the things that make you feel good.
Self-care allows you to give your body a break from stress, anxiety and emotional trauma which increases your immunity. Stress and depression can overload your mind and body, so it’s crucial to reduce them as much as possible.
The more your needs are met, the better your relationships will be with other people. When you are feeling down about yourself and don't feel important chances are other people will pick up on that and treat you accordingly.
All the benefits that have been stated above help with increased productivity at work and at home. Less stress, higher immunity, and higher self-confidence all help to boost productivity.
Remember, self-care is all about you as an individual. So, what you need to do to take care of yourself won't be the same as your spouse, friends, and family members need to take care of themselves. Taking steps to create your own self-care routines will leave you feeling better about yourself mentally, physically, and emotionally.
This is Part 1 of a 10-part series on Taking Care of Yourself
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Part 10 - What happens when you don't take care of yourself