Self-care activities are something talked about a lot but often times we preach about using them for others or we recommend others to use them. Well, what about us? We are just as important to that puzzle as the person we are preaching to about using them.
Picture yourself on an airplane. Before every departure, a flight attendant walks you through the safety features and rules of the airplane. One of those instructions are about the oxygen masks that may drop down if the cabin loses air pressure. The instructions explicitly say, "Secure your mask before securing others." Let's apply that to life, folks!
"If you do not take care of yourself, you will not be able to show up for others," says Dr. Stelter. Self-care activities allow you to replenish, unwind, recharge...all of the above. Popular self-care activities include journaling, using essential oils, exercising, gardening, cooking, deep breathing techniques, and meditation. Which ones help relieve your stress, anxiety, sadness...whichever reason you should engage in self-care activities?
Did you know that self-care activities also nourish your brain? Your brain health consists of your emotional, mental and cognitive well-being. Each self-care activity is either calming you, boosting your mood, or helping you concentrate or pay attention better. How cool is that? There is a process called neuroplasticity happening that is igniting this process. You can relieve stress and boost your brain health! Win, win!
It's important to schedule our self-care activities into your daily routine. Otherwise, time, and every other excuse, will get in the way. Start with 15 minutes a day. Work your way up to 1 hour a day...yes, 1 hour a day. There are 24 hours in a day and you control how you spend them. When you start your self-care activity, say to yourself, "I'm taking these next _____ minutes for me." And then begin.
As you put your "oxygen mask on", you can then help others breathe better too.