Some confuse the act of self-care with selfishness, where one simply thinks of oneself at the expense of others. Others experience guilt at the thought of having some time for themselves. Therefore this blog aims to explain self-care and its importance. It also explores some realistic means and activities through which one can take care of oneself.
What is self-care?
Self-care is the act of doing things for oneself in order to take care of one’s physical and psychological well-being. In doing so, one is generally healthier. This is because it reduces stress and anxiety, boosts self-esteem, improves relationships with others, and protects one’s mental and physical well-being (Circle Health Group, 2022). Therefore, although one might feel guilty for needing to do things for oneself, one can remind oneself of the benefits of doing so. These include being more focused on one’s job and also being more readily available to help others (Lawler et al., 2021).
Life seems to be like a race, where one is constantly going from one thing to another and stopping to do things for oneself might seem unimportant or not essential. Nevertheless, as identified above, this is not true. Thus, one needs to understand how to learn to take care of oneself in such a busy world (Lawler et al., 2021).
One of the things that can help one find some time to self-care is prioritising one’s tasks. Automatically, one wants to do everything, sometimes even the impossible and hence it is important to recognise what actually needs to be done and focus on those tasks. Following this, one can then focus on other tasks provided that there is enough time. Being stressed out about having too much to do, will generally not lead to more productivity. Hence, having fewer tasks on one’s mind can be beneficial for better focus.
Having breaks throughout the day can help one be more productive. Thus, even though breaks might seem to be ‘wasted time’ they give one a clearer mind hence allowing one to focus more on the tasks at hands.
Find pleasure in the little things
Whether it’s the need for some alone time, or whether it is simply the need to get away from everyday life, try to have ‘me time’ while still doing other essential things. This could include, listening to music while driving to destress and stop thinking of daily activities, to having a coffee and reading a book while having a bath. Life is about making time and not finding it. Therefore, it is essential to integrate self-care with other activities which are essential. This enables better commitment for a happier and healthier self.
If you think that you can benefit from professional support on this issue you can reach out here.
Yasmine Bonnici graduated in Nursing and also completed her Masters in Counselling. She has worked with victims of domestic violence, clients dealing with suicidal ideations, bereavement, separation and anxieties. She is currently working with Willingness Team as a counsellor seeing clients who would like to explore their own identity and deal with any surfacing issues.
Lawler, M. et al. (2021) What is self-care and why is it critical for your health?, EverydayHealth.com. Available at: https://www.everydayhealth.com/self-care/ (Accessed: December 12, 2022).
What is self care and why is it important? (2022) Circle Health Group. Available at: https://www.circlehealthgroup.co.uk/health-matters/health-and-wellbeing/what-is-self-care-and-why-is-it-important (Accessed: December 15, 2022).