Self care. It’s likely you’ve heard the term before.
With a quick Google search, you’ll find an abundance of ideas, tips, and tricks to enhance your self care, and if you really want to do your research you’ll find the World Health Organization’s definition: “the ability of individuals, families and communities to promote health, prevent disease, maintain health, and to cope with illness and disability with or without the support of a healthcare provider.”
It’s hard to define self care as one single action because it isn’t one.
Self care can look like many things; things you may enjoy like taking a bath or reading a good book. But often it also includes things you may not enjoy, like exercising or going to doctor’s appointments. It may be helpful to break down self care into three main categories:
- How can I enhance my physical well being?
This can include the aforementioned doctor’s visits and exercise, but also includes personal hygiene, nutrition, and getting a good night’s sleep.
- How can I enhance my emotional well being?
It may seem indulgent or selfish to take that bath or take the long way home because it’s prettier, but the idea here is to take that extra time for you. Enhancing your mental health can also include socializing and spending time with loved ones.
- How can I enhance my spiritual well being?
This could sound like religion to you, but it doesn’t have to be. If you feel your life is made better by attending your church regularly, great. If not, being spiritual could look like a multitude of other things. Maybe mediation feels better for you. Or spreading kindness through volunteer work. Or keeping a gratitude journal. Spiritual well being, just like emotional and physical, is all about what enhances your life. Check in with yourself about what your values are; what can you do to further those values and live by them?
If you’re still not sure what your self care looks like, that’s okay. Try things out, see what works best for you. Here are some ideas to help you get started:
Happy self caring!