We’ve all seen them – the mud mask selfies and glittery bath bomb boomerangs. Even though the concept of self-care is the necessary act of taking time to focus on your well-being, social media makes it seem indulgent and frivolous. It can be hard to relax while you’re binging Netflix shows or opting for retail therapy when the things making you crave self-care in the first place are still top of mind.
On your next “me day,” try one of these sensible self-care practices:
Build a budget
Money can be a huge source of stress and anxiety builds from adopting the, “I’m not going to look at my bank account” approach. Sit down and survey your finances, then make a plan you can stick to. Whether it’s getting out of credit card debt or saving enough to visit an old friend, creating and sticking to money goals will put your mind at ease.
Wash your sheets
You know that feeling of crawling into bed with fresh sheets after a long day? There’s nothing more therapeutic. Wash your sheets and make your bed to earn a sense of accomplishment – the coziness is an added bonus.
This might be the most important step, and often the hardest. On those days where it’s all you can do just to get out of bed or off the couch, challenge yourself to simply stand up. Once that’s done, you’ve already accomplished the hard part and going for a walk outside or running an errand doesn’t seem as daunting.
Write thank you notes
Take the time to reflect on the good things in your life by writing thank you notes to friends and family. This active practice of gratitude will remind you that your network is there to support you, and will show those close to you how much you appreciate them.
The gut-brain connection is more impactful to your mental health than you might think. Nourishing your body correctly has a proven positive impact on how your brain functions. Pick a new, healthy recipe to try instead of sticking with your go-to dinner plans. Your brain and your belly will thank you.
Turn off your phone
Don’t put it on silent, don’t put it in another room, completely turn off your phone. Disconnecting, even if it’s only for an hour or two, is like a mental reboot button. When you’re not focused on scrolling, you can regain focus on yourself and your real-life relationships.
Whether you choose to try this approach or stick to mud masks, any method of caring for your body and mind is a step in the right direction. Self-care looks and feels different for every person, but the goal remains the same – engage in activities that make you feel good inside.