Self-care isn’t just another trendy buzzword — it's actually a crucial part of maintaining a healthy, balanced and happy life. Unfortunately, it's also one of the first things to fall by the wayside when life gets busy, which is... basically always. You’ve probably heard the saying "you can't pour from an empty cup" plenty of times before. And while it may seem a bit cliché, the truth behind it can’t be ignored.
When we constantly push ourselves to the brink of exhaustion, our lives become a daily struggle rather than the well-oiled machine that we strive for. Between demanding work schedules, trying to keep up with healthy habits, maintaining social obligations, and of course, caring for our families and children, we all have a ton on our plate. That’s why it’s even more important to make self-care a non-negotiable part of your day — but how?
Prioritizing our own needs may feel like a selfish task, especially when we're so used to caring for others. But by carving out some dedicated “me time” each day, you'll be so much better equipped to handle life's challenges and show up as your best self in the other areas of your life — and for the other people in your life. And it doesn’t have to be a significant amount of time to make an impact — even just a ten minute morning meditation, half-hour yoga class or quick journaling session before bed can have a big impact on your overall happiness and success.
Here’s a few other strategies that will help make self-care a non-negotiable:
Tip #1: Announce It to the World 📣
At first, you might feel guilty reserving some time just for yourself. But by sharing your intentions with your loved ones ahead of time, you’re not only setting clear expectations and boundaries, but you’re paving the way for some serious self-love. Plus, it's a great way to avoid awkward conversations later on when, for example, your mom asks you to come over for dinner, but you already have plans to relax with a good book and a glass of wine.
And let's not forget the power of peer pressure (we’re talking about the good kind, of course!). Letting your loved ones know that you're dedicating time to your own well-being and mental health is a great way to hold yourself accountable to your own personal goals. So go ahead and share your plans with your family, friends, coworkers — everyone! Who knows, you might inspire them to prioritize their own self-care too.
This is a fantastic strategy to implement at work, too. By clearly stating that you don’t answer emails or phone calls prior to 9am, your boss and coworkers will be that much more likely to wait on that non-urgent request, so you can enjoy your morning in peace. You can also set limits on how many meetings you attend in a day or make clear when your day comes to an end, which will help avoid burnout and keep you focused on the most important tasks.
Tip #2: Go Solo to Reset Your Independent Thoughts 💭
The theory that “you are the average of the five people that you spend the most time with” is an interesting one, and it’s certainly true to some degree. Have you ever noticed that after you spend enough time with someone, you begin to pick up on their mannerisms, sense of humor, and your personalities begin to seem to morph into one?
That’s why whether you’re an introvert or not, spending time alone can help our mental health rest, recuperate, and gain clarity. Your precious “me time” is important to reset ourselves back to the baseline, where you aren’t influenced by others.
To get to know your true self even better, consider starting a daily habit of journaling. Writing your daily thoughts down is a great strategy to help uncover your most sincere thoughts and feelings. Even just five minutes of journaling can bring deep-rooted thoughts to the surface, help you identify patterns and get to know yourself on a more profound level.
Having trouble sticking to this habit? This is one instance that quantity is actually better than quality — just scribble down anything to get started, because once you have the pen in your hand, you’re bound to let more cohesive thoughts flow. And hey, some days, you might not have any insightful realizations or life-changing revelations, and that’s okay. Continuing to show up even on the days you don’t “feel like it” is what will help turn this into a daily habit. PS: If you’re looking for some cute stationery to inspire your morning journaling habit, check out these adorable printables — print and reuse as many times as you need!
Tip #3: Find a New Adult Hobby 🤹🏼♀️
Picking up a new hobby is one of the best ways to carve out dedicated time each week just for yourself. Plus, you’ll get to spend time doing something you are passionate about! You could enroll in new type of workout class, learn to paint with watercolors, start a garden in your backyard — it could be anything!
And while playing doubles tennis once a week with your husband is great, in order to prioritize the true “me time” we’re aiming for, it might be a good idea to find something you can dive into completely independently. Remember, this isn’t selfish — instead, think of it as a way to recharge your introvert batteries (we all have an introvert side to some degree!). By taking care of yourself first, you'll be much more capable of handling all of the other responsibilities, obligations and curveballs that life throws your way.
Adult hobbies are so important, but unfortunately, they are often the first thing on the busy schedule chopping block. But hey, this is for your own happiness and mental health — sometimes, those dirty dishes in the sink will just have to wait. And by trying something new that’s completely out of your comfort zone, you just might discover a hidden talent or newfound passion. So go ahead and give yourself the permission to make time for sometimes that bring you joy.
Start Small, But Start Today 🐌
Even adding a small chunk of “me time” to your daily routine can make a big difference . Start small, with something as simple as taking a few minutes each morning to stretch or meditate, or committing to a daily walk around your neighborhood. Even just fifteen minutes will help get you into the habit of dedicating time for yourself.
Remember, self-care isn't selfish — it's an act of love towards yourself and those around you. By taking care of your own physical, emotional, and mental health, you'll be better equipped to show up as your best self in all areas of your life. So go ahead and make self-care a non-negotiable part of your day — your mind, body, and spirit (and friend and family) will thank you for it, pinky promise!
Thanks for checking out The Deep Clean, Tidy Plan's blog full of tips and advice to help you declutter your mind and build good habits. We're all about self-care, productivity, organization, and are here to assist you on your personal growth journey to become your best self!