‘Put yourself on the list’
It seemed like such a simple idea – if you add self-care items to your to do list you are more likely to do them – but sometimes even the most simple things can be difficult.
After years of not really looking after myself, breaking the habit hasn’t been as easy as it sounds.
When I tried to put myself on the list, often I struggled to think of things to do for myself, and even if I did put something for myself on my weekly planner, I often found myself ticking off other things and leaving the self-care items undone.
There are two things stopping me from actually doing self-care stuff… time, and guilt.
I’m already busy and overwhelmed a lot of the time, I can’t possibly fit anything else in.
And if I do make time for myself that means I am must be taking time from someone or something else. Our budget is already stretched enough, so I can’t spend money on myself, and a ‘good mum’ puts here kids first, and a ‘good partner’ makes time for their relationship.
Logically I know they are just excuses. I know that self care is important. I’ve watched myself crash and burn and seen the ramifications of it, but still I find it difficult. I find it difficult because I struggle to believe that I am worth it, that I am worth the time, and the money, and the effort right now. Maybe tomorrow, maybe next week, maybe when the kids are bigger… but not right now.
It’s a vicious cycle that I’ve found myself trapped in – I don’t do much self care because I don’t feel like I deserve it, then I feel crap and stressed and I see the ramifications of that, and they reinforce the idea that I was right, I am not worth it.
Well, excuse my language, but fuck that shit.
I am going to break that cycle even if I have to ‘fake it till I make it’.
I’m taking my own advice and I’m going to start small, I’m going to make it easy to do self-care.
Are you with me?
We don’t need to make massive huge changes, we just need to make time for quick wins. Little things that remind us that we are important, that get us back in the habit of looking after ourselves without the guilt.
Pick one thing from this list of 25 easy self-care ideas every day, and do it.
- Go outside.
- Fill up your water bottle and drink more water.
- Read for enjoyment
- Have a shower – it can be one of the few places a parent can find silence./li>
- Sit down and do nothing for five minutes
- Eat a piece of fruit or some veggies
- Put on some music you love.
- Take five deep breaths
- Write down three things you are grateful for.
- Listen to a podcast on a topic that interests you
- Go for a walk, even if it is just to your letter box, or around the block.
- Do five minutes of exercise – jumping jacks or a jog around the back yard.
- Sit in a patch of sunshine for five minutes
- Write a quick email or send a quick text to a friend, just to say hi.
- Set your phone to do not disturb after dinner and until the next morning.
- Stretch your body.
- Do hand yoga – I know it sounds weird, but it feels good
- Say an affirmation 5 times, or until you mean it -“I have enough, I do enough, I am enough”
- Try a meditation or relaxation app or podcast
- Look for joy and beauty in the every day stuff.
- Go to bed 15 minutes earlier than you planned.
- Doodle a picture or draw a zentangle, or try some adult colouring.
- Do something you love for ten minutes (it’s ok if that is playing candy crush!)
- Call a friend for a chat
- Start a love list – 100 things I really really love
What would you add to this list of self-care ideas?
Do you find self-care easy to do, or is there something getting in your way?
How do you manage to get over the excuses and the hurdles and make looking after yourself a part of your day?