It has become quite evident that as a whole, our culture puts busyness on a pedestal and exhaustion has become a status symbol. Yet, many of the books, magazine articles, and presentations that cross our paths inform us that this way of life is ruining our health, our families, and our happiness.
Self-care is a term that is growing more in popularity. When it first started to pop up, the term seemed synonymous with massages, manicures, naps, and vacations. Self-care can absolutely consist of those things, but on a deeper level, it is simply something that refuels us and contributes to our healthy mental, emotional, and physical states of being. Here are a few ideas to help you think about what self-care means for you!
Establish a morning routine
Kick overwhelm to the curb before you even get out of bed by preparing what you can the night before, such as kids’ lunches or programming your coffee pot. You might also plan to start your day by spending time in the Bible, exercising, reading a novel, or another activity that you look forward to doing.
Block your calendar for “me” time
Each week, schedule a few hours on your calendar where you don’t allow yourself to do any work, chores, or tasks. Approach this time as you would with an important meeting and don't cancel it! Fill this time with something you enjoy.
Sleeping really is essential to your health. Prioritizing sleep means focusing on getting quality sleep at night but also taking time for the occasional nap as needed.
Set realistic goals
Newsflash: You can’t do everything and be everything to everybody. Pace yourself and set realistic goals so you don’t burn out. Use the SMART system or begin time-blocking your day to help you prioritize your to-do list.
Ask for help
It can be really difficult to ask for help when you need it. But when you do, it can make a big difference in your sanity and give you space to breathe! Asking for help could mean delegating some tasks to others, asking your spouse to take over bedtime duty, or even scheduling an appointment with a therapist.
Bonus: Even God wants us to practice self-care!
That’s right! When God rested on the seventh day, after creating the heavens and the earth, He provided an example for us to follow. And if that wasn't enough, He put that Sabbath day in the 10 Commandments so that we could be sure to know the importance of rest! If the Creator of All Things needs rest, surely we humans do, too! A good self-care regimen is essential for your mental health, and your mental health is essential for your overall health.