35 Self-Care Tips to Thrive in a New Year
Self-Care Guide: 35 Self-Care Tips to Thrive in the Rest of 2018
Self-care is en trend at the moment, and even though many have been practicing self-care without necessarily calling it that for years, naming it and claiming remains of the utmost importance. In our fast-paced society, many of us, if not most, neglect our self-care needs — we’ve stopped doing things that recharge us and make us feel uplifted, and we blame it on a lack of time and energy. Burn-outs seem to be on the upswing, and unhealthy levels of stress are taking its toll on many in profound ways. Millennials especially find themselves in what feels like a quarter-life-crisis. They are working full-time jobs in addition to side hustles geared toward bringing dreams closer to reality, and of course, achieving more financial freedom. In the midst of the rat race, it’s critical to carve out some time to devote to your physical, emotional, cognitive, relational, and spiritual well-being.
Taking care of yourself will help you become more productive and accomplish whatever it is that you have set your mind to achieving. .
Take a look below at a list of 35 options for self-care activities that I have created for you to implement for a more grounded, healthier, recharged you. Pick the ones that resonate and let go of the rest.
Whatever you choose, remember that you must fill your cup first!
Self-Care Tip 1: Take an epsom or himalayan salt bath
Epsom and himalayan salts are known to assist in the process of relaxing muscles in the body. Making time to soak and soothe your sore muscles is a great self-care option.
Self-Care Tip 2: Go for a walk or a hike out in nature
Going outside and having a moment to breathe in fresh air in nature can help relax the body and encourage mindfulness and gratefulness.
Self-Care Tip 3: Cook yourself a meal
Set some time aside, go to the grocery store, and purchase all of the ingredients needed for your favourite dish — or if you don’t have the time, have them delivered to your home. Cook the dish exactly as you desire, set the table for yourself and sit down and enjoy a home cooked meal made by you, for you. Cooking can be therapeutic and also helps you tap into your creative side as you experiment with flavors to bring your concoction to life.
Self-Care Tip 4: Read inspirational/motivational books and quotes
Reading can help inspire new thought processes and help you remember who you are. Reading self-help or personal development materials geared towards helping you create more uplifting thoughts is always a great self-care hack.
Self-Care Tip 5: Practice guided meditation
Meditation is a great tool to help calm the mind and the body. Having someone else lead the meditation takes away the thought process and leaves you in a position to relax, be mindful, and release tension.
Self-Care Tip 6: Listen to your favorite music
Music is a great mood stimulant, so play a song that reminds you of good times and create new memories as you listen to your favorite songs.
Self-Care Tip 7: Dance like nobody’s watching
Movement helps release static energy within the body. Get up and dance like no one is watching and allow yourself to feel free and uninhibited. Taking a group dance class is another fun, more social option to introduce dance into your life.
Self-Care Tip 8: Sing in the shower
The acoustics in the bathroom are similar to those in a studio. With the sound of the water running and you singing, you’ll feel like you are at a concert starring you. It’s a great time to let loose and belt those notes out that you would never do in front of anyone else.
Self-Care Tip 9: Take a midday nap
Remember when you were young and full of energy and never wanted to nap? Those days are sadly long gone, and taking a 30-45 minute nap is a great way to reset the body and feel full of energy again.
Self-Care Tip 10: Go to bed early
Everyone needs around 7-9 hours of sleep every day, but that rarely happens for the majority of people. Whenever you have the opportunity to head to bed early to get some extra rest, take that time for yourself and see how much better you feel the next day.
Self-Care Tip 11: Sleep in late
Again, rest is necessary, so whenever the opportunity reveals itself to obtain 7-9 hours of rest, do it!
Self-Care Tip 12: Read for pleasure
At times, reality can seem bleak and uneventful. Reading for pleasure is a great escapism technique that one can use as a method of self-care. Grab a book and get lost in another world for a while.
Self-Care Tip 13: Schedule alone-time
Sometimes, we are constantly surrounded by people and it gets hard to get a moment alone. Alone-time is necessary to connect and check in with yourself. So often we are so busy taking care of and catering to others that we don’t pause to really reflect and assess on how we are doing. Alone-time provides the opportunity for you refill your own cup, so that you may pour into others without feeling drained.
Self-Care Tip 14: Get your hair done
Our outward appearances matter to us perhaps more than we would like to admit; booking that appointment with your favorite hairstylist can have you feeling like a brand new person.
Self-Care Tip 15: Go for a manicure and pedicure
Taking the time to relax and get your nails and toes done is a great self-care option. For many, beauty maintenance activities become part of a weekly self-care ritual that makes them feel more like themselves.
Self-Care Tip 16: Get a massage
Many people work forty-plus hours a week, whether it be sitting at an office desk or on your feet at a construction site. Our jobs and regular wear and tear take a real toll on the body. Scheduling a massage with a registered massage therapist is not only healing for the body, but for the mind as well.
Self-Care Tip 17: Free-write in a journal or diary
If you are the type of person who has a lot of thoughts running through your head, writing in a journal or recording voice notes for yourself can be therapeutic. You have the chance to release all of the thoughts and emotions you may have been holding in, in a judgement-free environment. You can rip up the journal entries or delete the vice notes whenever you want because they’re your private property, however, I suggest keeping old journals to track progress and personal development over time.
Self-Care Tip 18: Go to therapy
Talking to friends and family about our issues is healthy, and they may even give great advice, but going to therapy and speaking with a trained, unbiased professional is a great self-care option. Therapists listen without judgement, and your best interests are always at the heart of the matter. If you feel ready for some outside assistance, therapy is a wonderful option for achieving great healing, clarity, and peace of mind.
Self-Care Tip 19: Join a support group
Support groups are an amazing resource when you are going through a challenging time. Most metropolitan cities provide free support groups through social service programs, and some religious temples host free support groups comprised of a congregation. There are groups for many different niches, from weight loss to drug and alcohol rehabilitation, to cancer support and anger management, to codependency. In this era of information, you can research online for options available in your area.
Self-Care Tip 20: Dress up for no particular reason
Our appearance has an effect on our mood, so on days when you may not feel positive about your physical expression, put some extra effort to elevate your look. As the saying goes, “when you look good, you feel good,” so dress up; you might just spark a change on the inside.
Self-Care Tip 21: Spend time with friends
Being around people who understand you and make you feel accepted is uplifting to the soul. Remember to make time for your friends in your busy schedule, even if it’s just for a couple of hours a week. Prioritizing friendships also reminds us that we are never alone in this world. And hopefully, the laughter this time brings will uplift your spirit.
Self-Care Tip 22: Take a hot shower
If you are not keen on baths, then taking a hot shower can be an alternative relaxing option for you. The steam from the hot water in the shower will relax your muscles and allow you to feel refreshed.
Self-Care Tip 23: Turn off your phone/social devices
Before cell phones and smartphones, we all had to wait until we were at a landline to be in contact. Now with social media, large data plans, and smartphones, we are constantly in contact with multitudes of people, near and far. Take a screen time break from tweets, calls, text messages, and scrolling through feeds and remember what it’s like not to be constantly accessible to the outside world. Turn your phone and social devices off for a predetermined period each day, and see if it doesn’t add a little peace into your life.
Self-Care Tip 24: Give back; do charity work
It feels good to know that you have helped someone and made someone’s day or life a little better. Volunteering can help you feel connected to your community and instill a greater sense of purpose through contributing to a great cause.
Self-Care Tip 25: Take an online course/audit a class you’re interested in
We are never too old to learn; there is vast knowledge in this world that can be absorbed in many different ways. Taking a course to enhance your knowledge or sharpen your skill set will always make you feel like you are growing into a better person. If paying for a class is not an option, there are tons of free materials on search engines like YouTube to help you learn and develop a range of new skills.
Self-Care Tip 26: Plant a garden or have flowers in your home
The earth is the foundation of life, and gardening is a great way to feel grounded or connected to something larger. Digging up the dirt, planting seeds, and watching them slowly grow as you water and nurture them is a great way to connect to the earth and feel good about your existence.
Self-Care Tip 27: Make healthy, nourishing food choices
Many organic fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices have healing properties in them. Making the conscious decision to fuel your body with healthy foods ensures a healthier, more purposeful you, and even wards off sicknesses and lifestyle diseases.
Self-Care Tip 28: Get active with exercise
The body needs regular movement and circulation or static energy can build and turn into extreme or chronic pain. Getting active through exercise is a great method to get the heart pumping and blood circulating.
Self-Care Tip 29: Pick up a new hobby
Remember when you were younger and had many hobbies? — there was never a shortage of imagination and you could spend endless amounts of time consumed with your passions. Get there again by picking up a hobby. Return to something you used to love, or experiment with something totally new. Either way, having a hobby can energize you and connect you to who you are outside of the rat race of work and responsibility. It’s your life; you should enjoy it.
Self-Care Tip 30: Binge-watch your favorite television series for a weekend
Watching TV is a form of entertainment and can help almost anyone relax. Sometimes mindless entertainment can be the cure from a hard, stressful week.
Self-Care Tip 31: Walk barefoot on the grass
Connecting with nature and feeling the prickly grass rub in between your toes has proven to be very therapeutic. Allow your body to connect directly with the Earth and begin to feel a sense of stability.
Self-Care Tip 32: Ask someone for a hug
Hugs produce hormones that allow people to feel safe and secure. Try giving someone a hug and holding their embrace for a minute to feel how deeply they care and love you. A hug is a wonderful exchange of energy and can help to calm nerves or relieve tension.
Self-Care Tip 33: Light candles or incense in your home
A great scented candle can brighten almost anyone’s mood and a nostalgic scent may even bring back good memories. Light a candle and allow the candle to represent the light inside of you that you desire to share with the world.
Self-Care Tip 34: Meditate to Spiritual or Ancestral Figures
Praying is another word for talking to spiritual beings/figures. A lot of people feel that praying connects them to their higher selves and enables them to make better decisions or feel more hopeful in dark times. Praying is a good way to release your concerns and requests to the Universe.
Self-Care Tip 35: Cuddle with a pet
Pets can be an extremely calming, soothing presence for many people — so much so that many hospitals and retirement homes even offer pet therapy for those suffering from loneliness, anxiety, depression, and other ailments. Pets can’t judge you or talk back — their sole purpose is to love and be loved. Taking time to show your pet or someone else’s pet some love is a great way to boost your mood and show love to yourself as well.
Of course, self-care is extremely personal, and regimens will vary, person to person. In fact, it may take you a while before you nail down a self-care routine that feels natural — that’s perfectly okay. Some activities on this list may resonate more than others, so go for things you naturally gravitate towards and do what feels right. Remember, self-love is a journey, not a destination.
DO YOU NEED ASSISTANCE DEVELOPING A SELF-CARE ROUTINE THAT’S RIGHT FOR YOU? Call Dr. Logan Jones today at 646.798.8354.
Dr. Logan Jones is a New York therapist and performance coach. He is not a healer, but an aid on your personal journey to heal, forgive, and transform yourself. Dr. Logan is an adamant believer in the power of awareness and compassion for self to radically change lives, and he lends his clinical expertise to clients striving to increase confidence, self-worth, and peace every day. Call today for a complimentary consultation.
For more daily inspiration, follow Dr. Logan Jones on Instagram: @drloganjones
No matter what you’re going through, whether depression, anxiety, or PTSD, there is hope. If you are looking for therapy in NYC his psychotherapy practice is located in central Manhattan near Flatiron, West Village, NoMad Chelsea, or Union Square.