In today’s hustle-centric gig economy culture, it’s easy to get lost in pursuing your goals and lose sight of a healthy work-life balance. If you’re feeling burnt out or overwhelmed, check out these self-care tips for ways to improve your everyday life and listen to your own needs!
Respect Your Feelings
Remember that negative feelings are still valid, and they will pass in time. No bad mood is permanent, and you have the power to overcome it.
Write your feelings down in a journal. Getting the bad vibes out of your brain and into words provides clarity and insight into what’s making you feel down.
Smile--even a fake smile triggers your body to release chemicals that improve your mood! Fake it till you make it!
Talk to a trusted friend or family member about how you feel.
Detach from negative people. It’s an important part of self-care to put yourself first sometimes, even if other people aren’t happy with your choice. Do what’s right for you!
Use positive affirmations to divert your negative thought processes.
Forgive yourself for mistakes.
Avoid comparing yourself to others.
Communicate openly with those around you. Don’t be afraid to voice your opinions or handle a conflict unapologetically.
Learn about healthy coping mechanisms.
Go to therapy. Seeking professional help for mental health issues is an important part of growing as a person, and a big step to living a life that makes you happy.
Love Your Body
Stay hydrated! The amount of water you drink has a HUGE impact on your overall well-being. Most experts recommend 8 cups per day, and more if you’re exercising heavily or in a hot environment.
Keep up with your personal hygiene. A shower or bath can work wonders when you’re feeling down in the dumps.
Eat a healthy, balanced diet that meets your personal nutritional needs.
Practice sleep hygiene. Try to wake up at the same time each day, and sleep for as close to 8 hours as you can manage.
Exercise! Dancing, yoga, Zumba, running, sports, and plenty of other options are available to get your body moving and release endorphins into your bloodstream, which relieve pain and stress.
Cut down on bad habits (smoking, drinking, etc.) that harm your body.
See your doctor regularly for checkups.
Set a timer at the same time every day for any medicine and vitamins you take.
Adopt a skin care routine. It’s important to hydrate your body from the inside and the outside!
Take a break from work, but avoid mindlessly scrolling through social media. Try to do something that engages your brain and/or body.
Take a power-nap.
Keep plants in your living and working spaces.
Meditate in the mornings before you start your day, and at night before you go to bed.
Do something creative, such as making crafts or painting.
Practice old hobbies, or start a new one.
Sing & dance to your favorite music.
Get outside! Even if it’s just standing in your backyard or taking a walk down the street, the fresh air and sunshine will almost certainly brighten your mood.
Unplug from your phone and computer for a short time and live in the moment.
Take a small vacation to somewhere you’ve been meaning to visit.
Have a long, hot bath or shower.
Spend time with your pets, or volunteer at an animal shelter.
Take cute selfies, even if you delete them later.
Volunteer for a cause you’re passionate about.
Play calming video games or mobile games.
Read a book.
Try out a new recipe.
Make a playlist.
Buy a present for yourself or a loved one.
Watch informational videos about subjects that interest you.
Have a date night with your significant other, some friends, or yourself!
Watch something that makes you laugh.
Visit a museum or art gallery.
Explore your local community events and organizations.
Watch your favorite feel-good movie.
Give yourself a manicure or pedicure.
Try lighting a candle or burning some incense.
Make a list of all the things you’re grateful for in your life.
Give a compliment to a stranger.
Unclutter Your Life and Increase Productivity
Make a list of all your tasks and prioritize them according to when they’re due and level of importance.
Use a monthly calendar to keep track of important events and meetings.
Use an app for managing your work and break time periods.
Clean your house for 10 minutes every day.
Meal prep for the week to cut down on time spent cooking during weekdays.
Keep your purse and car clean and organized.
Keep important items (keys, wallet, etc.) in a location you’ll remember.
Technology spring cleaning. Do an “inbox zero” to clear all of your notifications, and delete old files from your phone and computer.
Practice time management skills.
Listen to upbeat music while working.
Appreciate your own accomplishments.
Try not to multitask. Focus on one task at a time until they are all complete.
Follow the two-minute rule: if something can be done in less than two minutes, do it right away, without thinking. This cuts down on small tasks that take up your mental space.
Take advantage of the “bonus” time you spend commuting or waiting in line by creating your daily to-do list or responding to emails on your phone.
Create a morning and evening routine.
Turn off notifications for social media or other unessential programs on your phone or computer during work time.
Create a pleasant work environment by adding plants, photos, or other decorations to your workspace.
Minimize interruptions to the best of your ability.
Lay your clothes out at night for the next day to avoid searching for them in the morning.
Do your most dreaded task first--getting it over with will make the rest of your work seem like a breeze, and you won’t have it hanging over your head.
Don’t be afraid to say no to taking on new tasks or projects when you’re already in over your head. Clear boundaries work best for everyone in the end, and allow you to produce quality work without burning yourself out or failing to meet deadlines.