If there’s one thing bookworms are very aware of – most of the time – it’s the importance of mental health and self-care. I often come across posts where bloggers are telling their followers about taking a step back and focusing on themselves, planning some self-care of even talking about the self-care routines that help them in the long run.
Since today’s World Mental Health Day, and since I too realized how important self-care is, I thought it the perfect time to share all the hints, tips and tricks I figured out for myself. Some things might feel very logical, others less but these things are so personal and all depends on your mood, your interests and.. well.. simply yourself.
There are things that might work for me, but won’t work for you and vice versa. It’s all a matter of trial and error, finding the things you know help you and using that knowledge as best as you can.
So.. On to the things I do to take care of myself, my body and my mental health!
GENERAL THINGS TO HELP ME STAY SANE
~ For me, the biggest one is mood-doing. I’ve used the term before because it really is important to me. I have to feel free, as if I have all the options to do what I want to do and not feel forced into things. I need at least some time or days where I can just go with my flow and ignore everyone else’s. Whether that’s reading, going out or doing something else entirely – as long as I’m in the mood for it, all’s good.
~ Linked to that, but not entirely, is the importance of me-time. There are days where I just crave being alone and have this urge to throw my boyfriend out so I can be alone. Or I leave him be and take off on my own for a couple of hours to clear my head. I don’t even have to do something useful, simply being alone can help a lot!
~ Another thing that helps me stay me is having a creative outlet, focusing on something I love doing. This one can go two ways when I’m concerned. Either I’m in full-on blog prep mode – which is amazing because then I’m in a disorganized chaos and relishing it too – or I’m turning my kitchen upside down by baking. Either one of those. At first I also had my bullet journal, but I gave up on that along the way. Oops…
~ As you guys might know, I love planning things and scheduling stuff. This also means I quickly learned how I don’t want to plan certain days. I don’t put all the awful chores and to do’s on the same day because it’s mentally exhausting to get through them. If you even get through them at all, that is… I usually gave up after two or three things and felt drained for the rest of the weekend.
~ Stop being afraid of saying no to whomever and whatever. It doesn’t really matter what it’s about. If you don’t feel like doing something, you shouldn’t be doing it. Someone wants to hang out but you’re so not in the mood for social interaction? Say no. Something has to be done right now, but you don’t have the energy to deal with it? Say no and ask someone else to do it or help you out. Don’t allow yourself to have an overfilled plate that’s bound to topple over and leave everything in pieces. Saying no is not a bad thing.
MORE SPECIFIC THINGS THAT HELP ME
~ Related to that is locking myself up with a book, drink and all the blankets. Or sometimes I just make sure my boyfriend is doing something in another room before installing myself elsewhere with all the necessities. This might be the same as reading time, but to me.. it’s not. Reading time is whenever I’m reading, which is more often than not when my boyfriend is sitting right next to me.
~ One of my habits – or rituals, even – is coming home and sitting on my butt doing absolutely nothing for half an hour whenever I get home from work. This is my “when the boyfriend isn’t home”-habit more than anything else though. If he’s home, I always start doing chores immediately because I know we have plenty of time to relax afterwards. If I’m on my own, I just need those thirty minutes to reset my brain and motivate myself to do.. useful stuff.
~ Have the guts and glory to schedule an entire day of doing absolutely NOTHING. There are times where I refuse to meet up with friends and / or family because I know I need to focus on myself and do whatever I want. Sure, sometimes doing that for a couple of hours helps but.. the feeling of having an entire day without plans, chores and to do’s? Heaven, I tell you! Charges my mental battery right up.
~ There are those moments where I feel a long bath or shower can fix all my problems. Simply soaking in or standing under hot water while using my favorite products can refresh me in a way nothing else can. I’ve also taken to buying bath bombs every time we go on a trip in case there’s a bath since we don’t have one. So, yup, looking forward to that bath I’m getting at the end of October!
~ Clean, clean, clean! I’ve noticed, more than once, how a clean home can equal a peaceful mind and sometimes that’s all we need. Not to mention how cleaning can actually have you feeling so productive and proud of yourself by the time you’re done!
~ Removing myself from social media for an hour or two – or longer – by turning off the internet, blocking my phone with an app or simply putting it in another room. It can be refreshing to not feel dependent on the internet or fall in those scrolling traps!
Those are things that help me. Of course, there are more ways to take care of yourself and there are plenty of people talking about it too! Here are some posts I stumbled upon in the past that had me trying out new things:
> Jenny asking “How do YOU practice self-care?” and sharing a list of things to do.
> 45 Simple Self-Care Practices For A Healthy Mind, Body And Soul
> Buzzfeed’s A to Z Self-Care Guide
Are these things that help you as well?
What do you do to take care of yourself? Do you often try out new things?