The saying “If you don’t make time for your wellness, you will be forced to make time for your illness.” has resonated with many people recently. It is a simple reminder that prioritizing one’s health is important and that wellness begins with the individual. Often, we are busy focusing on others, their needs, and how to help them. We tend to shift our attention to taking care of others. Yet, in doing so, time escapes us, and we might find later that we have neglected ourselves and our own health. Practicing these simple self-care strategies can help us get back on track.
- Sleep well – Establish and guard your bedtime making sure you do not push it back so that you get the recommended amount of sleep each night. Sleep helps you renew, recharge, and re-energize. Sleep plays a significant role in helping the body heal itself too!
- Practice gratitude – Practicing gratitude on a regular basis has been associated with enhanced optimism, better sleep, fewer physical ailments, and lower levels of anxiety and depression. Reflect on the things you appreciate about yourself and others. Say thank you to others and be kind to yourself!
- Nourish your body – Eating is essential for survival. Even more important for self-care is nourishing your body with the appropriate nutrients. Make sure your meals are balanced and that you take the time to eat and savor each bite, allowing all your senses to appreciate your meal. Do not forget to stay hydrated!
- Stay active – Daily physical activity is beneficial to our minds and our bodies. Exercise not only gives us energy for the day, but it can also help us focus and think more clearly. Explore different ways to be active and find activities that are suitable for you.
- Social connections – Enrich your life with positive social connections. Fostering relationships with family members, neighbors, friends, and colleagues helps combat loneliness while providing emotional support. Keep connected with loved ones. Whether it is a phone call, video chat, a quick visit, or a longer get-together, take time to connect with others.
- Take a time out – Spending time alone helps the body and mind sync. Focus on your breathing and how each part of your body feels. Be mindful of your surroundings. Enjoy your environment taking in the often-overlooked beauty that surrounds us. Go for outdoor walks and contemplate nature; even in the colder seasons, there is beauty.
Actively taking care of oneself can help us find balance, be in better moods, and feel energized and happier. It should be a normal activity in our everyday life. Self-care does not need to be time-consuming. Start with something small and do not feel guilty about it or apologize for taking care of your own health and needs. In doing so, you are setting a great example for others!
If you would like to read or share this article in Spanish, you can find it here ¡Tu bienestar comienza contigo!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Veronica Aranda strives to enhance the well-being of families and communities by improving a person’s understanding of healthy habits and behaviors and facilitating access to the health and educational resources they have identified. Although Veronica enjoys working with people across the lifespan, her primary audience has been older adults and parents of school-age children. Her bilingual skills allow her to provide health education programming in English and in Spanish.