Life is not always easy. Every day, people struggle to find a balance between work, family obligations, hobbies and more.
It is not uncommon to be wrapped up in trying to get everything done that we forget to take care of the most important thing of all: ourselves.
Self-care is not a new concept, in fact, people have been practicing self-care for centuries. Recently self-care has found its way into the news as more people realize how important it is to take some time to make sure your needs are being met.
The first category of activities that can help you with your self-care needs are the relaxation activities. These are ones that many people think about when they think of taking better care of themselves. It also happens to include a selection of activities you probably don’t allow yourself to enjoy regularly.
Here are some of the top relaxation activities to help you with self-care.
Meditation and Mindfulness
After a long hard day at work or with the family, you probably just want to shut down and relax. There are tons of relaxation activities that can help you recharge. Even if you only have a few minutes to spare, you can find an activity that will help you relax.
Meditation is a great relaxation tool and can be done in as little as five minutes or can last as long as you want. If you have access to a quiet space, you can practice meditation. If you are able to, try to sit on a chair in a quiet room. Laying down is not the best way to meditate as you may end up falling asleep! You can close your eyes if you wish, or just softly look down.
Practice taking in deep breaths and slowly letting them out. You can put on some calming music if you like. There are loads of free apps and websites devoted to meditation coaching, so if you have never tried meditation before you do not need to be intimidated.
There are also several health benefits to meditation, including reduced blood pressure and stress relief. Meditation is great for mental health and a perfect place to start for a night of self-care.
Practicing mindfulness simply means that you are aware of what is going on around you, and you are fully present in the moment. You aren’t being distracted by your phone, the tv, the computer or lost in thought.
Being mindful means that you are giving yourself to the present moment. You can practice mindfulness anywhere! You can practice while washing the dishes, taking a walk or just sitting quietly in your
Being mindful has so many mental health benefits such as relieving stress, increasing memory and focus and overall improved cognitive function.
Being mindful allows you take a few minutes just to yourself, to just be. Practicing mindfulness regularly can lead to improved mental health and can be a very impactful self-care tool.
Soak in the Tub
After you’ve meditated, it is often relaxing to take a warm bath. You can even meditate in the bath if you want to be that efficient! Taking a bath allows you to have a few minutes of time alone to unwind. A hot shower right before bed can also be a great alternative if you are pressed for time but still want the same benefits.
Diffusing some essential oils or even adding a few drops of lavender oil directly to your bath water can help ease your nerves and create a very soothing bath. There are several essential oils you can use to help create a very calming environment such as, lemon, orange, bergamot, or peppermint.
Many companies create special blends of essential oils used to help promote better sleep, relaxation or happiness. Create a playlist of songs that make you feel happy and play that while you are soaking, or play some soft piano music. Do what feels best for you so that you can achieve maximum relaxation while taking your shower or bath.
Pick up a Book
Self-care is really all about taking some time for yourself, and reading is an excellent way to relax and spend the time alone that you have at the end of the day.
After you put the kids to bed or finish dinner, break out that book on your shelf that you’ve been meaning to read. Reading a book before bed is much easier on your eyes than staring at the screen of your phone or tablet and you may find it helps you get to sleep faster! Alternatively, waking up early to read can also be a way to get some self-care in before your day even starts.
When the house is quiet and the sun hasn’t come up yet, get your coffee going and immerse yourself in the book of your choosing. Reading doesn’t have to be enjoyed alone though, you can join a book club or read a book to your little one at the end of the day. It is easy to find company through books.
The great thing about reading is that you can do at any time during the day, whether you read early in the morning, late in the evening, or during the day when taking a break. Bring a book with you wherever you go, and it will be available when you need it.