Self care is incredibly important. It will keep you sane through all the busy times in life. In this blogpost I will share the ten things I do to take care of myself and that always help me feel better.
The reason I’m writing this post now is because a part of me really needs to hear it again. I’m doing a ton of different things and sometimes it gets overwhelming. Right now I’m working on two different books – a fantasy novel and a personal development ebook – and also trying to keep this blog running while maintaining my social life and house chores (those last two tend to suffer a lot lately).
Even though I love doing all of these things and I feel like I’m doing exactly what I want to be doing with my life right now, I certainly have days where I feel incredibly unmotivated or lack focus. When I have an off-day or feel down for whatever reason, these are the things I do to take care of myself.
Take time to disconnect
If you follow me on social media, you probably know that I spend way too much time on there and I have major FOMO. I just want to make sure that I stay on top of things and don’t miss anything important. However, this isn’t contributing to me feeling well. It’s more often than not making me feel rushed or stressed because I can’t keep up with how fast everything is going.
So even though I truly love spending a lot of time talking to people online, I sometimes have to take a step back and spend some time away from my screen to re-energize. My favorite way to disconnect is to read a good book.
This is definitely something that I had a lot of trouble with in the past. I didn’t want to tell anybody no and risk upsetting them or making them dislike me. I was a huge pleaser. Saying no was definitely one of the most important lessons I have learned in my life, because sometimes you need to put yourself first and you’re allowed to do that.
If someone is asking something of you, consider if you want to do it and if you can. If you can’t answer those questions right away, just tell the other person something along the lines of, “Thank you so much for the opportunity, I’m going to take a moment to consider what I can do for you.”
If you already know you’re not going to do what they’re asking, tell them you can’t do it respectfully. Don’t make up excuses for saying no. Either tell them the real reason you’re saying no or give them no reason at all. After all, you don’t owe them an explanation.
There’s nothing some fresh air can’t fix. Or well, maybe some things… But I’ve found that going for a walk and breathing in the fresh air will clear your mind. It’s a great way to relax and let go of being stressed. It also works wonderfully if you’re stuck with a problem you don’t know how to fix or experiencing writer’s block. Going outside tends to give me the headspace I need and I always feel a lot better after I go for a walk.
I love going to the forest or the dunes, either alone or in good company. If you go together with someone, you’ll have an entirely different conversation than you would have sitting on the couch together. It’s a great way to spend some quality time.
Okay, I have to include this one in this list. I am NOT a fan of working out, haha. I like the idea of being fit a lot, but to tell you the truth I usually can’t be bothered to go to the gym or pool.
However, whenever I do go, I feel so much better after. I feel less stressed, more energized and when I go to the gym several times a week, I tend to sleep a lot better. Exercising and focusing on my physical health has helped me with getting better mentally too.
Well, this one kind of goes hand in hand with #4. As I said, it has helped me a lot with feeling more comfortable in my own body and helping me get out of my depression too. I was incredibly insecure and it helped to focus on working towards my goals for my body.
Not just eating healthy or losing weight is going to help you feel better. Have you ever experienced that incredibly lazy and just overall bored and disappointed feeling you have after stuffing yourself with chocolates and drinking a lot of soda? Yeah, me too. Food has a major influence on your body. When we treat it right, it treats us right by making us feel better.
Make or listen to music
Whenever I feel bad I love to pick up my guitar and sing some songs. It’s a great way to deal with things that are happening in your life. Music influences us a great deal. You can “trick” your emotions with it. Whenever I feel sad, I listen to happy, upbeat songs. At first it will feel a bit odd, but after a while you actually start to feel better!
As a writer I might be a bit biased, but I think reading is absolutely great. Sometimes I just can’t deal with life anymore and I have to escape for a moment. That’s where books come in. I get to travel to a whole different world and be someone else for a while. Or at least I don’t have to focus on my own life. I don’t just read when I feel bad of course. I also read just because it’s a lot of fun. Many of the stories resonate with me, inspire me or touch me in some other way.
For me, the perfect moment to read is right before bed with a cup of tea. It’s my favorite way to end the day. Plus, if you read a paper book, you have the benefit of not looking at a screen right before bed and sleeping better.
Keep a journal
Keeping a journal is a great way to analyze how you really feel about certain situations. When I describe the things going on in my life, those things always become a lot more clear to me. Plus, it’s absolutely great to read your old journals when you’re older. Things that seem incredibly mundane to you right now, will be a valuable insight in your life in a few years.
If you don’t like the idea of keeping a journal of daily things, you can also consider keeping a gratitude journal where you write down what you are grateful for each day. This will help you be more positive.
Talk with a friend
If you’ve been feeling down, don’t keep it all in! Talking about it will bring some massive relief, as it always does for me. A friend can offer you a shoulder to cry on or some helpful advice.
I also love talking with my friends about my writing. I have a few friends who write too, so it’s great to discuss our writings with each other. When I’m feeling stuck or I need some feedback, we read each other’s work and help each other out. This always helps me to feel motivated and inspired again. It’s one of the many things I’m very grateful for, having friends that share my passions.
Watch a funny movie
If all else fails, this is pretty much the best hope you’ve got. I love watching a funny movie or television series to cheer me up and have a good laugh. Sometimes just laughing is enough to turn your mood around. I know it’s definitely not the answer to everything, but it sure can’t hurt.
Friends and How I Met Your Mother always do the trick for me. I can rewatch them endlessly and still find them funny every time.
I hope some of these self care tips were useful and will help you feel better. Whatever it is you’re dealing with right now that has you down in the dumps, know that it’s only temporary and life will get better again. In the meantime, take good care of yourself. You deserve to feel happy.
With much love,