Why self-care is essential for all women and 10 tips to start taking better care of yourself today.
As women, we are living in an exciting time. Never before have we had the opportunities that are available to us today.
As we reach for our dreams, many of us find that we have many other demands on our time and energy.
Being a wife, mother, girlfriend, colleague, friend, mentor, ambassador, influencer all rolled into one can be exhausting.
We NEED to prioritise ourselves. We cannot share our gifts with the world if we do not treasure the gift that is our own selves.
In this article, we talk about how we can use self-care to replenish our bodies, minds and souls.
Spot the signs of burnout
One of the number one causes of burnout is due to chronic stress. In some cases, people refer to stress as the “silent killer”.
The body needs to have a level or a certain amount of stress to activate fight-or-flight response, but when the body is in this mode all the time, it spells trouble.
When people burnout, it means that the body has taken the maximum that it could mentally, physically, and emotionally.
If you’re not taking as much care of yourself as you should, you may be heading towards burnout and that can be extremely dangerous and even life-threatening.
Mothers especially are the ones who constantly have to divide their time, energy, and love towards their families and work. This makes things very difficult and at the end of the day leads to so much exhaustion. The same applies to dads, especially single dads.
The signs of burnout include but are not limited to the following:
- A constant feeling of exhaustion
- Inability to sleep well
- Feelings of anxiety and stress
- A feeling of emptiness and lacking
- Loss of drive and passion
- A loss of energy and drive to do anything
- Constant feeling of being on edge with family and work colleagues
- Emotional withdrawal from friends and family
10 reasons you should start a self-care habit
1. Self-care helps to reduce stress and anxiety
When you start taking care of yourself, your body starts tapping into feelings of a more fulfilled life. This helps you cope with stress with more clarity and control.
2. Encourages positive thoughts
Taking care of yourself can lead to a positive outlook on life and your goals, leaving less room for negativity.
3. Gives you time to unwind and be alone
Nurturing yourself helps you to grow as a person and it gives you time to unwind.
4. Helps you to keep your immune and nervous system healthy
A balanced diet along with exercise is great for your body. When you’re balancing your personal and work time, you’ll be able to get more out of your day, including rest which is vital for the good health of your body’s immune and nervous system.
5. Challenges you in a healthy way
When you challenge yourself, you open the way to a more competitive, positive and higher self- esteem.
6. Helps you to manage emotions
Taking care of yourself helps you to deal with your emotions such as grief and anger. It also sets the tone for mindfulness.
7. Revitalises your energy
Caring for yourself renews your energy and helps your body to feel more vibrant. This may include taking time off and visiting your health spa for a massage or doing some yoga.
8. Balance life and work
Caring for yourself will help you find more balance in your life as you begin to be more clear and handle stressful situations in an effective way.
9. Boosts self-esteem
Having low self-esteem is the results of many issues. However, when you start to take care of yourself and see to your own needs as well, you could start to notice a boost in your confidence and self-esteem.
10. Overcome your fears
Because taking care of yourself has so many positive factors, it’s clear that it can also help you to overcome your fears. As you become more confident in your everyday life, you feel less intimidated by things, people, or huge goals for that matter.
How to start taking care of yourself
When you make the switch from a crazy-chaotic-fast-paced lifestyle to one that adds some essential “me time” it may take effort and persistence to adjust and to stick to it.
Here are some small, but helpful ways in which you can add a bit of TLC into your daily lifestyle:
Eat for better health
It’s easy to stray into a situation where you forget about what diet is good for your health. While fast foods offer an array of convenience, it doesn’t help much with your health or nutritional needs for that matter.
Start implementing healthy meals into your everyday life whether you work from home or take a packed lunch to work. If there isn’t time to prep a meal, there are healthy food options from certain eateries and you could simply order from there.
Meditation helps you to find focus and stability from within. In time, this same focus and energy will flow out and become part of your life every day.
In other words, meditation can help you find that sense of calmness and balance because it requires you to be still and breathe.
Many people have found meditation to be very relaxing and even enlightening. For this reason, it also does your body well as you breathe and simply get to a calm state of mind.
This is one of the most beneficial forms of self-care because it requires nothing but time and willingness to do it.
While this may seem unnecessary, the truth is that breathing does help. Some breathing exercises have a direct effect on the brain and the hormones that it produces.
When you do breathing exercises during meditation, yoga, or simply taking a moment to breathe, your body decreases the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline.
While it does so, it also helps to release endorphins (happy feelings, happy moods). Endorphins also act as the body’s natural painkiller because it has “built-in” analgesic characteristics.
Some patients have also found that consistent breathing exercises reduce feelings of anxiety and panic attacks.
Yoga stretches or Thai Chi
Another form of self-care is to implement some relaxing movement into your day. If you have a busy day every day, then doing some yoga first thing when you wake up can truly help.
Just like meditation, yoga and Thai Chi helps you to focus and draw in that sense of positivity as you breathe and exhale. It works best when you pair your “asana” (yoga poses) using Ujjayi Breath (Victorious/Victory breath) throughout your session. Yoga with Ujjayi breath also helps to alleviate tension and regulate body temperature.
Drink lots of water
Water is truly the essence of life and it helps to keep the body hydrated as well as serving many other functions that include the following:
- Hydration may improve mood
- Hydration has the ability to help your body feel energized
- Water helps to prevent muscle cramps during workouts and can also lubricate joints
- Good hydration helps improve skin and minimize wrinkles
- It’s also good at supporting healthy skin and nails
- Water can help reduce constipation
- Water is essential if you are suffering from diarrhea
- It reduces the chances of kidney stones
When it comes to women’s health and simply taking the time to care for yourself, it’s very easy to neglect or forget the process altogether. However, taking care of yourself is very important for your wellbeing and helps you get through challenges in life.
To find balance means that you need to take the step in looking after your needs and requirements as a person.
Start slowly but surely, adding the steps to help you see to your own needs, the rest will follow.
Resting can help to restore your body naturally because it’s able to heal itself. When you adopt a healthier lifestyle that includes enough sleep, nourishing food, and exercise, you may be a step closer to being healthy from the inside out.
Do you struggle to find time to practice self-care? We hope this post helps you to find that essential balance that you need for your everyday life.
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