It is all too easy in this modern world to put our own needs last. Sadly too many people do this and end up all the worse for it. In fact, many folks think that sitting down with a cup of coffee and cookie now and again is all they need to keep themselves on the right track. However, true effective self-care is a bit more complicated than that. With that in mind, if you want to improve your standards of self-care read on to find out how you can take it to the next level.
Don’t sleep too much – do a relaxing activity instead.
Yes, tiredness is a major issue for most of us. We work long hours, we use blue light tech devices all the time, and it’s hard to stick to anything near to a bedtime routine. However, making up for this by napping during the day, except on the very odd occasion, is a bad idea.
The reason napping is bad is that as humans we need a certain number of consecutive hours of sleep for our body and mind to rest and repair. Interrupting this with napping makes it harder to get to sleep at night, and also more difficult to sleep for the duration our bodies requires. Something that can have a further negative effect on how we feel and function throughout the day.
That is why it is best to try and pick a relaxing activity where you are still conscious instead of sleeping in fits and starts during the day. Relaxing activities you can choose from include guided or mindless meditations, something you can learn about in more detail in the video below.
Then there are also complementary therapies such as reflexology and the meridian line therapy that you can get by visiting a professional like those at The Present Sage Acupuncture clinic. The latter being a relatively painless procedure that uses thin needles to enable your body’s energy to flow properly and improve overall well being.
Don’t eat sugary treats – get some exercise instead.
Next, if you are getting serious about self-care, reaching for those sugary treats to give you a boost when you are feeling tired, sad, or angry is a no-no. After all, it’s just the same as using any other substance to numb your feelings and avoid dealing with what is bothering you.
That is why instead you need to find a positive way of boosting your dopamine levels and helping yourself to feel happier naturally. The best way to do this is through exercise. Something that you can build into your schedule each day.
You can even keep mini exercises machines on hand in the office and around your home. Something that makes it much easier to work your feelings productively and can cut the need for those sugary treats in times of stress.
Don’t resort to negatively and gossip – take some time alone instead.
Talking about a problem with a friend is a great form of self-care, right? Well yes and no. Now I’m not suggesting that anyone should suffer in silence and it is always a good idea to bounce ideas off a trusted friend of college. However, there is a difference between this and giving in to toxic negativity and gossip.
These activities are a bit like sugar in that they feel good ‘in the moment,’ but in the long run, they can do you a lot of harm. This is because you start to believe that things are truly as bad as the way you are describing them. That is why it can be so much more useful to find an outlet that is more constructive in this situation.
This may mean taking a break and spending some time on your own. Even just a few minutes out of the day to better get some perspective.
Journalling the issue can be helpful too, as it is a way of getting your feelings out, so they are not floating around and causing problems for you. It can also be a way in which you can stop identifying with such thoughts and patterns, allowing them to dissipate instead of holding onto them and refining them by gossip and bad mouthing.
In summary, if you want to take your self-care to the next level, you need to identify some of the less helpful things you are doing to cope with stress in your life. Then replace them with habits that are not only constructive but compassionate and healthy ways of treating yourself.