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40 Self-Care Tips For A Healthy, Happy, Hearty You

A famous person had once remarked, "An empty lantern provides no light. Self-care is the fuel that allows your light to shine brightly." In the hustle and bustle of everyday chores at the workplace or even at home, we often forget ourselves and entirely dedicate our minds and souls to achieving our target.

We often forget that self-care is not a luxury, but it is a priority and a necessity. The definition of self-care might vary from person to person, but the sole intention must be to do something which makes you feel better and helps your mind relax.

Self-care is a practice which a person should be following throughout the year, but often worldly circumstances make it impossible. Even in your wee hours of the day, you must remember to do a small act just for the happiness of your body, mind and soul.

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1. Sleep Is Self-care

Sleep can have a huge effect on how you feel both emotionally and physically. A lack of sleep can cause major health issues such as obesity, weakened immune system, slow cognitive functioning, and neurological disorders such as mania, hallucinations, chronic depression, paranoia and extremely impulsive behaviour [1].

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You can make sleep part of a self-care routine by watching your habits before bed, such as are you eating or drinking immediately before bed, does it contain caffeine or sugar or ingredients that can keep you up all night [2], disrupting your REM cycle.

You can manage your sleep quality with the help of the following:

• Leave electronics and work-related things out of the bedroom.

• Maintain a dark and cool atmosphere in your bedroom.

• Do not fluctuate your bedtime and wake up time.

• Avoid large meals for at least three hours before bed [3].

• Avoid caffeine at least eight hours before sleeping.

• Do not consume alcohol right before sleeping.


2. Exercise Daily For Your Body & Mind

This is a point that seems to appear on the top three list anything that is related to improving one's health [4]. Regular physical activity can help in reducing the risk and onset of various medical issues and health problems such as heart attack, stroke, arthritis, osteoporosis, diabetes and so on [5]. Also, getting your body to move will help increase the production of endorphins, the feel-good hormones and reduce anxiety and pain and thereby improving your mood [6]. Incorporate activities such as walking, tennis, or yoga into your routine.

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3. Meditation For Mindful Ease

The goal of meditation is not to control your thought; rather, it's a way to stop allowing thoughts to control you. In the state of despair, anger, or sorrow a person often loses his/her mind to think which path to follow, becoming perplexed by the complexity of the problems. This is where you should meditate for 15 minutes in a day to calm your mind and relax your body [7].


4. Healthy Diet Change For Healthy You

A recent study shows that the more a person consumes fruits and vegetable, the happier they seem in the long run [8]. This is because they help in improving one's physical endurance. Besides, it is seen that regular consumption of carotenoids present in fruits and veggies help in enhancing the level of optimism. Frequent consumption of vitamin B12 boosts serotonin which helps in regulating your mood [9].


5. Stay Away From The Internet For A Full Day

Today, not a single moment passes without a person swiping through the internet. Although the internet keeps us updated about what is going on around the world, a day off from social media, news and other apps can help you in treating your mind. So, take a day off from the internet and take up emotionally and mentally rewarding tasks such as going hiking, reading a book, spending time with your friends etc. [10].

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6. Go For A Body Spa

A body spa might sound like a luxury, but it studies point out that it can help soothe your mind and body and reduce the levels of anxiety, promoting relaxation. The massage can help reduce stress, tension, aches, and pains [11][12]. And lastly, it will release serotonin, the happy hormone which is best for your healthy mind.


7. Indulge In A Hobby

A hobby is not just a leisure activity; instead, it is a self-caring method that can help improve one's mood [13]. It is the best way to keep yourself engaged when you are perplexed with the anxieties around you. Indulge in any one of your favourite hobbies, like writing, gardening, reading, etc.


8. Remember To SLOW DOWN

Life in the fast-paced world pushes you to live a fast life, and that has never been proven to have any positive impact on anyone. Remember to slow down and enjoy the little things in life [14].

• You can start with eating slowly (no, not for an hour), making it a point to sit down without distractions.

• Take a couple of minutes every day to just breathe. Take ten deep breaths and allow yourself to re-centre and refocus.

• If you think your body or your mind is overly exhausted, allow yourself some time to rest. Some days, you can skip your chores and get that much need rest.


9. Learn To Say NO

Learning to say no can be hard. Many of us feel obligated to respond positively when someone asks for our time. If you are tired, stressed or mentally drained, saying yes to others can not only burn you out but can also lead to irritability and anxiety [15].


10. Take A Self-care Break

Spending time outside is one of the most effective and easiest ways to reduce stress, lower your blood pressure and to be mindful. Studies have pointed out that getting outside can help reduce fatigue, making it a great way to overcome symptoms of depression or burnout, as well as help you sleep better at night [16]. Getting out does not necessarily mean you have to go for a long trip; a walk around your neighbourhood park can also be helpful.


11. Get Yourself Organised

Getting organised can help you figure out exactly what you need to do to take better care of yourself [17]. Maintaining a planner can help in organising your responsibilities and appointments, allowing you to take care of yourself by getting organised. You can start by organising your workspace at home, reading area, kitchen and so on.


Some of the other ways that can help you are as follows:

• Drink some water first thing in the morning

• At the end of the day, write FIVE good things about your day

• Make a menu for the week (planning ahead)

• Move for at least 30 minutes a day

• Blast some music and have a mini party of one in your living room

• Consider making a healthy meal for yourself or your whole family (at least once a week)

• Read a book on self-care for self-care [18]

• Schedule your self-care time and follow it strictly

• Take a self-care trip (it does not have to be a costly, luxurious one)

• Adopt a pet to help you with your self-care [19]

• Go cloud-watching

• Check-in with your emotions

• Refrain from spending time with negative people

• Talk to yourself in the mirror; self-talk has been proven effective in boosting confidence [20]

• Find yourself a place of bliss (be it a library, a coffee shop, a small space in your home)

• Start your day with something pleasant

• Make small conversation with someone like your building security, coffee shop employee, delivery boy etc.

• Write down your negative thoughts

• Start a small vegetable garden in your balcony

• Volunteer just one hour (or more, if you can) a month

• Fix a small annoyance at home that's been bothering you

• Do a mini-declutter by recycling three things from your wardrobe that you no longer use

• Edit your social media feeds, and take out any negative people (mute, restrict, unfollow or block)

• Activate your self-soothing system, you can do this by stroking your arm, or if that feels too weird, moisturise

• Get fifteen minutes of sun

• Choose who you spend your time with

• Have a self-date

• Splurge a little

• Ask for help when needed


On A Final Note…

You must take a few steps back and rejuvenate your mind, soul, and body. The core intention of self-care is to do something which will re-energise your mind, get rid of anxiety, and make you happy. Remember always to love and take care of yourself.

The following self-care tips can help you relax, regain your happiness and keep you healthy and active.

Story first published: Thursday, October 1, 2020, 16:37 [IST]