A – Alone time – This is very important. Alone time gives us quite a few benefits. You can read about some here.
B – Bath – Baths are a great way to practice self care. They are great for relaxing, relieving sore muscles, and some quiet alone time.
C – Chocolate – Chocolate, or any treat you enjoy, should always be a part of your self care routine.
D – Daily – Self care is not a special treat. It should be something you do daily. Setting up a small routine during the day, or before bed, helps it to become a habit.
E – Exercise – I’m not talking about something done as punishment here. Exercise is something that should be rewarding. Some gentle, daily movement does wonders for your mind and body. Take a walk, dance around to your favorite music, etc. Make it fun!
F – Facial – A facial can be a fun thing to pamper yourself with now and again.
G – Groove – Get your groove on with some music! Music is simply a great thing.
H – Hydration – Keep hydrated. Everything falls apart if you try to function at a constant level of dehydration.
I – Important – Self care is important. In fact, it is vital. It reduces the negative effects of stress, and helps prevent burnout. It helps to maintain good mental and physical health.
J – Journaling – Journaling has been shown to have many benefits. It doesn’t have to be in a “dear diary” way, there are many journaling methods. I plan on revisiting this topic another day.
K – Kit – Making a self care kit can be extra helpful for someone who has anxiety or otherwise has trouble taking a moment for themselves. Having soothing items already gathered takes the guess work out of it.
M – Medication – Medication is vital to some people’s self care. Not everyone can deal with mental or physical illness with only good food and exercise. If your body requires medication to function at its best, make sure you take it as directed.
N – Nest – A nest made up of your most comfy, soft pillows and blankets is a great spot for a self care session.
O – Outside Time – Spending time outside is important for more than a dose of vitamin D. It has also been shown to improve your creativity and cognitive function.
P – Pedicure – A pedicure/manicure is another way to use self care time to pamper yourself.
Q – Quiet Time – We spend so much of the day surrounded by noise. Silence can be hard to come by, but some scheduled quiet time can do much for our health and mind.
R – Relaxation – I think everyone knows the benefits of relaxation. Many times self care and relaxation are a perfect fit.
S – Social – Self care is not only a solo event. There is a social element to it. We need love, affection, and a feeling of belonging to maintain our mental health. Make sure your social needs are getting filled by planning a get together with a good friend, lunch with your mom, a date with a loved one, etc.
T – Therapy – Therapy is not only for the “crazy”. Anyone can benefit from it, so don’t tell yourself you aren’t “bad enough” or think that it says something bad about you.
U – Understanding Yourself – With regular practice, self care helps you to understand more about yourself. Making sure I have eaten regularly, am hydrated, and am rested has helped me to better pinpoint when I need any of those things, for example.
V – Voluntary – Participating in voluntary self care now will help to ward off possible illnesses and other health problems in the future, which will then force you to slow down and take care of yourself.
W – Waking – I know, I already mentioned walking up at “E”, but there is more to it than just the exercise you get. There are mental benefits also.
X – Xanadu – Xanadu, ˈza-nə-ˌdü , is described as a place of great beauty, luxury, and contentment. Finding such a place to spend some time in would be well worth the effort.
Y – Yoga – Many people use yoga as a way to exercise, relax, spend time alone, etc.
Z – Zen – Zen is defined as a Japanese sect of Mahayana Buddhism that aims at enlightenment by direct intuition through meditation. Many people use “Zen” to refer to being very calm and relaxed. I hope you are able to find a sense of being so calm and relaxed by practicing some daily self care.