Self-care is not just another fancy term, but is extremely important for our physical, mental and emotional well-being.
Working round the clock, focusing on our goals and career, fulfilling our social obligations, carrying out innumerable responsibilities, so on and so forth. In this chaotic, fast-paced world, a rigmarole like such, more or less, defines most of us.
What’s more, being in this perennial state of hustle, we often forget to pay any heed to the most significant aspects of our life — our physical, mental and emotional health. Amid our relentless schedules, we fail to notice how our stressful lifestyle is damaging our overall health and the much-needed ‘self-care’ is often put on the back burner.
Many assume self-care to be just another fancy term, which is frequently used by counsellors, seen in magazine articles and mentioned in self-help books. However, self-care is crucial not just for our physical health but also for our mind and soul. So, what exactly is self-care? Wikipedia defines it as any necessary human regulatory function which is under individual control, deliberate and self-initiated. To put it in more simple terms — it is just about anything that you do thoughtfully to make yourself feel better — be it taking deep breaths when you realize you are stressed or taking a step back to re-energize yourself. However, it is important to know that self-destructive activities like over-eating, alcohol consumption or doing drugs, doesn’t get categorized as self-care. Unhealthy coping mechanisms like such and others may temporarily help some in challenging situations but they don’t count as self-care.
There are several different self-care practices that one can incorporate in their daily life, and if practised the right way self-care adds to your over-all effectiveness. Practising self-care makes you more optimistic, gives a boost to your self-esteem, and provides several other health benefits. Still not convinced? Well, we have listed down a few reasons as to why a self-care routine of any kind is crucial for your well-being.
Here, take a look at how self-care can benefit you physically, mentally, emotionally and even socially…
Boosts Your Self-Esteem
When you take time out to engage in self-care, you start the process of building a healthy relationship with yourself and others. Making a conscious effort to practice self-care enhances your positivity and makes you feel good about yourself. Self-care teaches you to love yourself. And mind you, it definitely doesn’t mean you are selfish, rather it shows you that your needs are important too. When you make your well-being the topmost priority in your life, you are bound to become happier and confident.
Facilitates Stress Management
Self-care equips you to handle your stress issues effectively. While a little bit of stress is but natural in our everyday life and, in fact, helps us to meet our deadlines and finish work, constant stress and anxiety are detrimental to health. Carving out time for self-care practices like having healthy meals, getting enough sleep, practising yoga and meditation, exercising regularly and connecting with your dear ones, not only helps you build a healthy response to stress but also prevents chronic stress.
Improves Physical health
The conscious steps that you start taking while following self-care practices, not only ensure your mental and emotional well-being but it also positively impacts your physical health. Studies have shown that when you are eating healthy, striking a good work-life balance, exercising, meditating, and caring for yourself… you automatically start feeling relaxed, positive, energetic, happier and good about yourself. It improves your immunity and you are not susceptible to colds, flu and upset stomachs. Self-care helps you to be strong inside and out.
More is not always good, especially for your productivity. While it is good to work hard, workaholism is a vice, and the sooner all work addicts come to terms with it the better. Getting yourself overworked impacts your productivity and can lead to several health issues like stress, anxiety, insomnia, depression and even heart diseases. Cultivating a consistent self-care routine while you are at work like taking breaks or setting professional boundaries, not only helps you avoid burnout but also keeps you motivated, sharp and mentally healthy.
Makes You A Better Person
When you nurture yourself internally and emotionally, you not only become healthy but also a happier person, which in turns makes you more compassionate towards others. Self-care gives you the resources to be a better caretaker and a better person.
How To Practice Self-Care
While self-care practices can differ from person to person, below are a few basics that can be followed by everyone…
* Eat a balanced diet
* Exercise regularly
* Give yourself a break when you need it
* Be mindful about your needs
* Learn to say no
* Spend quality time with family and friends
* Meditate whenever possible or take deep breathes occasionally
* Take time out for your hobbies
* Get good sleep
* Avoid unhealthy coping mechanisms
* Stop overthinking
* Indulge in activities that make you happy Basically, the key to self-care is to engage in a deliberate activity which makes you feel better physically, emotionally and mentally.
So, as you can see self-care isn’t a rocket science… start today and begin your journey to a healthier, fitter and happier you.