What is self-care? Well, according to much of the media, it’s all about candle light, bubble baths and aesthetically pleasing face packs.

This isn’t entirely wrong-these things make us feel good! 

But it doesn’t start and end there. There are many more longer lasting ways in which we can take care for ourselves and improve our health and wellbeing. 

What do you do in terms of physical self-care? Exercise? Massage? Yoga? What about resting when you are sick or going to preventative medical appointments? How about taking care of personal hygiene or wearing an outfit that makes you feel good about yourself? Not forgetting staying hydrated, eating a balanced diet and sleeping well. This is all self-care.

What about the emotional side of self-care? When did you last take a mental health day? Or take the time out to really enjoy a hobby? What about spending time learning something new or expressing your feelings in a healthy way? When was the last time you thought about and celebrated your strengths?

Have you considered how your social self-care looks? Have you spent any time lately connecting with old friends or making new ones? How about spending some quality time with your significant other? Taking part in enjoyable shared activities and stimulating conversation also plays an important part in social self-care. 

But that’s not all! There is also spiritual self-care, if that’s your bag…when did you last spend some time in nature? How often do you set time aside to reflect or meditate? Are you living in alignment with your values…do you know what your current values are?

Of course, this post wouldn’t be complete if we didn’t touch on professional self-care which is something we all struggle with at one time or another…how are you at sticking to boundaries in your role and keeping a good work/life balance? Are you good at taking breaks and being mindful not to take on excessive new responsibilities? How much time do you spend learning new things relating to your role and taking on projects that are interesting or rewarding? 

 So you see, self-care is more than just having an hour of pampering here and there (although I still wouldn’t say no to that!) 

Now that we have explored some areas of self-care that might not be immediately obvious, I invite you to think about what you are doing well and which areas need improvement-think of it like the Sims, it’s good for us to keep the energy bar level up in all areas for us to feel balanced.

Let me know your favourite forms of self-care in the comments, I’d love to hear some new ideas!