30 easy self care ideas that are simple enough for anyone to squeeze in when you’re feeling stressed, tired and in need of a reset.
I am moving a little more slowly this morning for sure.
We had such a fantastic Christmas weekend though! The kids (ages 5 and 3) are at a really fun age for Santa and all things holiday related. It really puts the magic and spirit back into the day when you get to see it through their eyes. 💕
I hope you all had a wonderful holiday - or just a lovely weekend - as well!
And now, although I’m still trying to stay focused on all the Christmas fun to make this last a few more days, thoughts of New Year’s and 2017 are creeping in.
I’ve gotta admit, too, I’m not really one for New Year’s resolutions.
I make changes, tweaks, course alterations throughout the year and if there’s something I want to do or change, I try to make that happen, whatever the month.
But I’m also ALL for healthy living and if that needs to happen in early January, then that’s great. Any time is a great time for making some healthy lifestyle changes. 👍
(But please, keep it realistic, keep it balanced and keep it healthy - nothing extreme! I see some crazy stuff out there for my job as a health and nutrition editor and it makes me cringe a little.)
Even apart from New Years resolutions though, I’ve been thinking a lot about incorporating some more easy self care ideas recently.
I know I’m not alone among moms, and women in general, that everything else seems to come first. Everyone else’s needs, all the other things that need to be done - all of that takes priority and we’re left in last place.
Which sometimes means our needs aren’t met at all. Sometimes there’s no more time, no more energy and we miss out.
And over time that can lead to frustration, to bitterness, to exhaustion and burnout. And probably worse.
So I’ve started thinking that I can love on my family and find ways to love on myself at the same time.
Sure, there will be conflict at times. I won’t always be able to do it all or to even do half of it. There will be plenty of those days of feeling pulled too hard in too many directions.
But I’m also in need of more balance overall.
And honestly, I bet I’ll be a better wife and mother if I feel more fulfilled and happy on a daily basis.
So I’ve come up with some quick + easy self-care ideas I can pull out anytime I feel like I’m getting the short end of the stick. Whether I’ve got 5 minutes or 50 minutes (ha, doesn’t that sound glorious?), there's something here for most of the days when I need a little mini-break to recharge.
30 go-to easy self care ideas:
- Take a hot shower or bath. (I like to turn the lights out or down low sometimes to make it more quiet and peaceful feeling.)
- Rub a yummy lotion on your skin - hands, arms, feet
- Get dressed in a favorite outfit and fix your hair in a new way
- Paint your finger nails or toenails - or get get a manicure or pedicure!
- Write in a journal or jot down a few things you’re grateful for
- Take a short walk outside to get some fresh air. Bonus points if you take the dog.
- Stretch lightly for 5-10 minutes to loosen up all over
- Put your legs up. Way up. (Read this about the benefits of the legs up the wall pose.)
- Place a tennis ball between your back and a wall and roll against it to work out knots in your shoulders/back. Or go get a massage if you can.
- Call a friend or family member
- Sit down and write a real letter to mail to someone
- Color - I love those stress-relief coloring books - or just free-hand something
- Make yourself a wholesome, yummy snack. Just for you. No sharing! (Raw date brownies, sweet potato toast and creamy peanut butter yogurt dip are all great options that don't take long at all.)
- Put on some music and sing or dance around the room
- Take care of yourself. Ahem.
- Curl up with a blanket and a book or magazine
- Step outside and find a spot to just sit in the fresh air and zone out (or mindlessly people watch if it’s a busy area)
- Splurge on a favorite treat - a fancy cup of coffee, a store-bought sweet treat, a new book or accessory, etc.
- Play with a pet
- Plan an afternoon or evening off - sometimes knowing a break is coming can help
- Look through a photo album of friends and families
- Pamper yourself with a face mask or some new flowers
- Light a candle and just watch the flame for a few minutes - it’s super calming
- Watch a favorite movie
- Take a short nap (or a long one!)
- Volunteer or do something to help someone else
- Find a crafty or creative project (I like to make random collages from magazine clippings and other scraps)
- Clean or organize a drawer/closet/room in your home
- Get out and go for a drive
- Visit a museum or art gallery
Now I wish I had the week off to do SO many of these. But that’s the great thing - I can come back to this list again and again when I need a reminder of some ways to unwind, refocus and give myself a little TLC.
I'd love to hear YOUR easy self care ideas -- what are your favorite ways to relax, unwind, recharge and get a little self care flowing? Leave me a comment below because I'm sure it won't be long till I need a new idea!
For now, whatever holiday craziness you’ve endured, whatever your New Years resolutions are for the coming year, I hope you’ll find a way to incorporate some of these easy self care ideas into your daily or weekly routines.
And I wish more balance, more joy, more mindfulness for all of us in the year to come.