Self-care seems to pop up all over the place at the moment. From discussions with managers around how they can build resilience to cope with the scale and pace of the workloads in front of them; to coaching clients who feel for whatever reason that they can’t prioritise looking after themselves first.
The truth is for most of us, we don’t put our own needs first – which can lead to feelings of overwhelm and burn out. We probably wouldn’t treat someone we care about in that way, and yet it is all too easy to lose sight of the importance of looking after ourselves.
The signs are all there, like a whisper in your ear that something’s not right. But all too often we don’t listen until things become critical. It’s at those times when we feel most under pressure or stressed that good self-care habits are even more important. Here’s a few self-care tips to help make difficult times feel more manageable:
- Be honest with yourself.Take a good look at all aspects of your self-care and work out which aspects really need to change.
- Practice mindfulness, yoga or meditation.Do what you can, even 5 minutes a day is better than nothing. It’s been shown that mindfulness practices change the brain which can help withdepression and anxiety, as well as helping with the quality of sleep and your self-esteem.A simple technique to get you started involves sitting quietly in front of a lighted candle. While you breathe in and out, focus on the candle flame and how it moves. Every time your mind wanders bring it back to the flame.
- Connect with friends or family. Feeling connected to others is a primal, basic need and something that can really help manage our stress. The people around you are probably dealing with some of the same issues. As a result, they might be experiencing feelings similar to yours and, when appropriate, discussing your feelings with a peer or family member can lessen the burden for both of you.
- Do something that you love. Even if it’s only 5 minutes a day to do something that you really love; something that you get so wrapped up in that you lose all sense of the time passing. It might be cooking, reading, listening to music, wood working, running…whatever it is something in which you can lose yourself for just a few minutes a day.
- Ask for help if you need it. Many of us don’t like to ask for help, for a whole host of reasons. Your ability to tend to your own well being and ask for assistance when needed can be a great asset – helping you to improve your performance and deal with the hurdles that your external environment might throw your way.
if you’d like to create healthy new habits to help look after you, work with me on a one to one. I can help you identify what’s getting in the way and what you can do take better care of your most important asset – YOU!