Create a self-care routine that addresses your innermost needs.
From mani-pedis and luxurious facials to healthy eating and power walks, it’s important to care for your physical self every day. But we often overlook the deeper self-care needs we have—those activities and rituals that pamper our soul, connect us with our community and ultimately leave us feeling more alive and refreshed than if we spent the day at a spa. While each of us may define our innermost needs differently, there are common threads that address our desire for fulfillment and tranquility. Explore and ponder these suggestions to help you create a self-care routine that shows empathy for others and compassion for yourself.
Appreciate “What Is”: In times of change or struggle, take stock of the good things you do have, rather than dwelling on “what could be” thoughts. By accepting—and appreciating—your reality, you can find more peace in your day, while still making plans for a better tomorrow.
Live with Curiosity: Being attentive and inquisitive to what’s around can break you out of a rut. Each day, open your eyes to discovery and possibility: Take a new route home, stop by a local historical site, attend a public concert, or tap into a free class online. Every new experience will expand your point of view and spark interest in new activities.
Awaken a Sense of Awe: Just look to a child to understand “awe.” It’s wonderment, exhilaration and enchantment, and we often forget how many miracles are around us every day. Allow yourself a few moments to appreciate remarkable, beautiful and extraordinary things, like a cardinal splashing in a birdbath, the precision of a violinist’s bow or the arrangement of seeds in a sliced kiwifruit.
Let Go of Adult Worries: When we feel weighed down with responsibilities, it’s often fear that’s driving our emotions: fear that we aren’t meeting someone’s needs or worry that we’re not upholding our end of the bargain. It’s okay to step back and let go of some of those obligations. Our personal well will run dry if we give 100% of ourselves every single day. In most cases, others will be perfectly okay without our constant vigilance and intervention, so worry less and channel that energy to something you enjoy.
Make Generosity a Habit: Share what you have in small and large ways to create a life that’s fulfilling to you and generous to others. Bring forward your gifts by sharing your time, talent and resources with a cause that inspires you, becoming a steward of what you love.
Offer Your Presence: Being fully present with others creates community. Free yourself of electronic devices and other distractions and bring your focus to those who have gathered with you, whether over dinner or a shared activity. Your undivided attention makes others feel cared for and appreciated, and the bond you’ll experience with them will be built on respect and trust.
Be Flexible: lt’s vital to let go of the tenseness that you hold deep within and be open to change. Go ahead and embrace unpredictability—in your day and in your life. Welcome the detours as new adventures rather than failed missions and see each adjustment you make as an opportunity to explore a new life path.
Mark Moments and Milestones: It’s easy to acknowledge the big celebrations and rituals in our lives, like birthdays and weddings, yet it’s equally important to acknowledge the private and personal triumphs and significant events that made you who you are today. You’ve been building your life day by day, so take time to honor your journey and transformations along the way.