There is this misconception that self-care is selfish. It is, in fact, far from that. Self-care is a crucial part of nurturing your wellbeing.
There are 6 different types of self-care that are split to reflect the different dimensions of your life: physical, emotional, spiritual, social, intellectual and sensory. Regularly taking time, even minute, to incorporate self-care into all aspects of your life is an investment in your wellness.
The physical kind is the type that most people automatically associate with self-care. Physical self-care is about taking care of your body, but that doensn’t just mean doing some vigourous exercise routine. It is about your overall health and resting habits as well.
- How you manage stress
- Sleep and rest
- Taking a walk
- Riding a bike
- Going to the gym or for a run
- Drinking more water
- Eating more fruits and veggies
Emotional self-care is about being more in tune with yourself and your emotions. It involves being more aware of your feelings, learning your triggers and thinking patterns, setting boundaries and dealing with stress positively. Working through your emotions can help you cultivate a sense of compassion, kindness and love for others, and most importantly, yourself.
- Journaling- writing down all your thoughts without a filter can help you better understand yourself.
- Setting more boundaries- it’s okay to say no.
- Practicing meditation and mindfulness to help you be more present
- Being expressive through creativity- painting, writing, cooking etc
- Replacing negative self-talk with the positive.
Spiritual self-care is about nourishing your soul, finding inner peace and giving yourself a greater understanding of life beyond yourself. These practices can help you find purpose and meaning in life and give you the courage to push through when times are getting tough and be the inspiration to help you find courage in every situation.
- Spending time in nature
- Giving/donating to a cause that you believe in
- Writing in a gratitude journal
- Intellectual self-care
This involves your personal growth, engaging in new things, a continual pursuit for learning and education and keeping a positive mindset. Intellectual self-care is about doing something you enjoy that nourishes and challenges your mind.
- Completing a puzzle,
- Reading a book
- Learning a new language
- Taking a class in something that interests you
- Listening to a podcast
- Reading a personal growth book
- Social self-care
A social connection is essential to having a sense of belonging and acceptance. Having a supportive network of people you can turn to when you need guidance, uplifting, or someone to talk is great for nourishing our inherent need for connection
- Spending time with loved ones
- Chatting with someone new at your favourite café
- Reconnecting with an old friend
- Taking a class that interests you and meeting like minded people
- Going to lunch with a friend
- Sensory self-care
Sensory self-care is about nourishing your 5 senses- sight, smell, touch, sound, taste. Nourishing your senses can help you with mindfulness and to de-stress and live in the moment.
- Burning your favourite candle
- Listening to soothing music
- Eating your favourite meal
- Spending time in nature
Self-care doesn’t have to be overcomplicated. Nor is there any formula to it. Self-care looks different on all of us. It is about taking time for yourself- it’s not ‘me first’, it’s ‘me too’.