There’s the famous verse in the Bible that goes, “Love your neighbors as much as you would yourself.” While it’s value remains to this day, over the years, I believe that a lot of us have forgotten what it means to practice self-care and take care of our physical and mental wellbeing.
We run busy lives, which have been made that much busier since the coronavirus outbreak. Work from home has blurred the lines between work hours and personal time. Colleges moving to online courses, have robbed us of a campus experience while extending our average workday. And practicing social distancing comes with its challenges, challenges that for sure affect our mental wellbeing.
With all of this happening, we, unfortunately, end up with minimum to no time to take care of ourselves or do the things we like. And that can sure drain our mental battery, and leave us feeling trapped in life’s activities and expectations.
Sigh. If only we had more than 24 hours in a day, or eight days in a week.
But we’ve got to make do with what we have. And trust me, it’s possible.
From my experience managing my everyday hustle, here are five self-care hacks that can fuel your mental battery:
Make physical health a priority
Yes, a good starting point for being emotionally well is to take care of your physical health. Get 7-8 hours of sleep per day. Take time to either go for a walk or perform exercises. And lastly, make sure you’re fueling yourself with a healthy diet.
Doing this makes your body release endorphins. These endorphins interact with your brain’s receptors, and they minimize your pain perception. They help you feel positive, which goes a long way in helping you accomplish your tasks for the day.
Give yourself that “me” time
Here’s what most of us fail to do, and it’s surprisingly something quite doable. Just like how you allocate time for work or for hanging out with friends, set up time, which is meant just for yourself. This time could be used for relaxing or engaging in a non-work hobby. Ideally, you’d keep away from technology during this time.
Setting apart that “me” time gives your brain the change to reboot and unwind a bit. It removes worldly distractions and allows time for your mind to just focus on you. You’ll feel refreshed and ready to tackle your challenges once you give yourself this time!
Reach out for emotional support
There are times when we experience things that make us feel emotionally drained or unwell. And it’s easy just to bottle up these emotions and keep them to ourselves. Here’s where reaching out to friends, family, and loved ones help, and we all must do that.
Reaching out to people and sharing your struggles gives yourself the change to thoroughly explore and experience your emotions. It will help you understand your feelings better, and as a result, you’ll feel stronger and more prepared to cope with your problems.
Give the right people your attention and time
There are so many people we will come across in life, but only a handful of them truly deserve our time and attention. Identify the people in your life that matter, and make spending time with them a priority. People like your family, your partner, and the friends who genuinely care about your growth and wellbeing.
Always remember that your time during the day is limited, so it’s essential to keep time only for people that genuinely care for you, and who are a positive influence and want to uplift you. To spend time with negative people is to devalue yourself, and that’s never what self-care is about!
In life, it’s valuable to have a sense of perspective beyond your daily activities. Give yourself time to think and reflect on what’s been happening, and meditation is the best way to go about doing this. Be it mindfulness or spiritual meditation, meditation will help you gain new perspectives on difficult situations, improve breathing, reduce negativity, and increase your creativity. Also, you will find yourself to be much more self-aware, with increased patience and tolerance.
Bonus hack #6: Keep your home/workspace tidy!
There’s the famous line that goes, “Once you clean your room, you will have accomplished the first activity of the day. And that will motivate you to conquer the rest of your day’s activities.”
Ensure the place you live in is clean. Ideally, start the day by making your bed, sweeping the floor, and cleaning your dishes. A de-cluttered home is a refreshing place to be in, and you want to be in an environment that further aids your emotional wellbeing.
The truth of the matter is, practicing self-care starts with having that determination to give yourself the importance you deserve. From physical health to emotional wellness, all it takes is simple activities that can significantly brighten your days, and keep your mental battery lasting long.