We’ve all heard of the term “self-care” and how important it’s supposed to be, but what exactly is it?
Self-care has become a buzzword, and the meaning behind it has gotten lost in all the hype. The working definition is any intentional action that a person takes to regulate their own mental, emotional, or physical health. Self-care is an important thing to practice, especially for young women who often face immense pressure to be successful in both their personal and professional lives. A study from the World Health Organization found that mental illnesses in women often go undiagnosed and untreated because of the social stigma around the idea of an “emotional woman.” It also revealed that one out of three women suffer from some sort of mental or emotional issue.
However, despite the hype, many people are still unsure of how to go about practicing self care in their daily lives. There are three main areas of self care: mental, emotional, and physical. Within those areas, there are many different ways to regulate your own health. Here are some guidelines to self-care that can help you make it a priority in your day to day life.
Physical well being is an area of self-care that sometimes gets overlooked, but it can be the huge part of how you feel, and it can often have an affect on your mental and emotional wellbeing as well.
Some of the best ways to regulate your physical health are the most commons ones, which are eating right and exercising. It sounds obvious, but eating and moving too much or too little can have a huge impact on how your body feels and subsequently how you feel.
Another area that many people try to skip out on is sleep. Regularly not getting enough sleep will have a negative impact on your mind and your body, and it can even make you sick. Although everyone is different, a good goal for regular sleep is between seven to 10 hours every night.
Mental and emotional self-care can sometimes be interchangeable, but there are a few distinguishable traits for mental health that are important to remember. The first one is stress. Stress management is difficult for many people, especially because they don’t realize how stressed out they are until it becomes really bad. Some ways to decrease stress are to practice good time management skills so you don’t become overwhelmed by deadlines, drinking tea, listening to soft music, or anything else that helps you relax.
Another important component of mental self care is to make sure you reach out for help when you need it. Two out of three people who suffer from a mental illness do not reach out for professional help because of the stigma associated with it. Not receiving help can have detrimental effects, and it’s important to be aware your own mental health and to reach out for help when you think you might need it. Even if you don’t suffer from a mental illness, frequent visits to a counselor or a therapist are just as important to your health as a regular physical checkup is.
Emotional health is one of the hardest areas of self-care to practice because it requires us to examine our personal lives and to make decisions that can sometimes be difficult.
One of the biggest ways to regulate your emotional health is to set limits with your friends and loved ones to make sure you’re taking care of yourself instead of only taking care of other people. Everyone has people in their lives whom they may love but who also drain them of their emotional energy. While you may not want to cut these people out completely, you can limit the time you spend with them, or even cut out one-on-one time with them and hang out in a group setting instead.
However, if you find that you have loved ones who are constantly making you feel bad about yourself, you should evaluate that relationship and consider if it would be best to let it go. This can be difficult, and if you choose to make this decision, reach out to those who do support and care about you to make the transition easier.
Self-care is not easy, but as you begin practicing it, you will definitely see an improvement in the way you look, feel, and even the way others treat you. Although there are many different techniques, self-care looks differently for everyone and you should take the time to figure out what methods work best for you. Self care leads to self-love, which is the quickest road to a happier and more successful you.
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