Ahh, the exfoliation of a warm, bubbly bath and ohh, the cooling properties of a gel face mask. What are these warm and fuzzy feelings we experience? Well, these feelings are the result of self-care. What is self-care? The internet defines it as the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health. In other words, it’s taking care of your health.
Self care is the act of taking care of oneself and it is a beautiful way to destress. Self care comes in many forms: exercise, a healthy diet, setting boundaries, and more. It is a necessity for any person. Taking care of yourself every once in a while certainly wouldn’t hurt. Improving health, confidence, and self esteem, self care is truly being kind to oneself. It is so important to your mental and physical health. Treat yourself the way you deserve to be treated.
There are numerous ways to practice self-care, but there are different ways to integrate self-care into your daily routine. There are two types of self-care: inner and outer. Inner self care takes into account your mental and emotional wellbeing; further, outer refers to your physical state. These two states commonly intertwine. I will elaborate on a few techniques that will allow you to incorporate self-care into your life!
Talk about your feelings! Emotions are not a sign of weakness. In actuality, opening up to others displays courage; not everyone is brave enough to reveal to others their true selves. Hiding feelings gives that negativity power above you. Being able to express how you feel is a way to cope with troubled times and make you realize that you are not alone. Sharing your thoughts and feelings can even inspire others to do the same.
Make sleep part of your self-care routine. Sleep has a huge effect on physical, emotional, and mental health. Teenagers ages 13-17 need about 8-10 hours of sleep, and we all know that you’ve probably never even reached the 10 hour mark on a school night. Try to avoid caffeine and turn off all of your screens.
Exercise! Exercise is proven to make you happier; it releases hormones that alleviate feelings of sadness, nervousness, and stress. This production of endorphins produce positive emotions. Studies have even shown that brief exercise can even change your mood drastically.
Unplug. Turn off your devices and take a breather. Smartphone addiction is real. We’ve all seen those couples at restaurants on their cellphones instead of communicating with each other. It can often lead to impulse control issues and increases loneliness, anxiety, stress, sleep disturbances, diminishing attention span, and encourages self absorption. Not to mention, it often leads to comparing your life to others. Everyone showcases the best aspects of their life on social media. Don’t compare someone’s best to your worst.
Yajaira Bains, a student at Pitman High School gives her take on self-care: “I think self care is truly important because it lets the mind, body & soul rest. I think as students we all overlook the importance of self care because we’re so busy on getting so much done in such little time, but it’s important to also take mental health days & do things that you enjoy in order to give yourself a break. I feel that when one goes on too long without a mental health break, they tend to crash & burn due to the workload & mental strain that was put upon them. In summary, I believe that mental health is important in maintaining a healthy mindset & work ethic in an educational environment.”
All in all, self-care is important. We all need a break sometimes. Constant overworking and pushing yourself if unhealthy and counterproductive.
So kick back and relax; possibly even take some tips from this article! Self-care is whatever you classify as healthy and relaxing.