Let’s face it. We have all at one point in time filled our baths tub with water, lit candles, put on some relaxing music, and just sat there in silence. On some other days, we have all decided to ditch the gluten-free bread and crunchy salad and indulged in our favorite comfort food. It’s McDonald’s in case you were wondering. Our romanticized idea of what self-care actually means is only a small part of the truth. The big part of the (ugly) truth lies in the fact that self-care means doing the stuff that we don’t like at all. Why? We don’t quite get it. But is it helpful? It 100% is.
- Learning to Say No and Yes on Your Own Terms
Sometimes, saying yes to a night out is exactly what you need to destress. Other times, saying no to working extra hours over your shift, is exactly what you need to destress. Learning to say no is one of the most important aspects of taking care of one’s self. It does not mean you are not kind, or are selfish, but that you are a functioning human being, taking it one day at a time. Don’t be afraid of changing up what you are used to doing if something drains you and leaves you empty. It is probably time to drop it and learn to say no to it.
- Establishing Boundaries and Prioritizing
Go to your nearest stationery and buy a to-do list. Or just open your notepads on your phone, and write the most important tasks for the week, and take it day by day. Sometimes, in the chaos of our day, we forget to prioritize our well-being and what makes us feel good. Studies show that checking things off of your to-do list can cause feelings of happiness and relief because it establishes a sense of accomplishment.
Establishing boundaries is also important. Yes, the romanticized idea of self-care means you can overspend in a shopping spree. But sometimes, establishing boundaries for your bank account might be exactly what you need. Work on doing everything in moderation. Yes, go out with your friends and have a night, but put a boundary on how many days a week you allow for leisure time.
- Learn to Pause and Breathe
Learning to hit the pause button on the hustle and bustle of life is very important. Yes, hustle culture is promoted and praised, but also taking a moment in the middle of the day for yourself is important. Go for a car ride and blast your favorite music (even if its Mahraganat, we won’t judge) or take a good hot, steaming shower at the end of the day before you go to bed. You would be surprised by what can make you destress if you
learn to make a balance between your lush bubble-bath days, and the days you need to have a mental health check! Sometimes, doing the things we dread the most, like self-reflection and evaluation, can make a great difference in your self-care days!