Care For Your Inner Self: 6 Easy Tips
It’s easy to let the responsibilities of life come before your own wellbeing. Work, family, and social commitments can sometimes put your own needs in the back seat. But self-care is extremely important and it should not be overlooked. It’s crucial that you put in the effort to make sure your mind, body, and soul are up for the day-to-day challenges that come with being an adult. If you’re wondering where to start, here are six ways to take care of your inner-self.
When most people think of the benefits of exercise, they think of the visual benefits— i.e. a thinner, more muscular body and glowing skin— which may make this tip seem out of place. While these things are definitely reasons to start going to the gym, an active lifestyle can have just as big an impact on the inside of you as it does on the outside. In a literal sense, regular exercise strengthens your heart and lungs, which means you’ll have more oxygenated blood running through your body. It also improves your immune system, which can help fight off diseases.
In a figurative sense, spending some time in the gym is great for your mental health. Studies have shown that moderate exercise can reduce feelings of depression or anxiety, improve your self-esteem, and help to get rid of some of the stress you’re carrying around. If your biggest barrier to living an active lifestyle is making it to the gym, look for smaller ways to get your body moving. These can take the form of taking a walk during your lunch break at work or parking in the back of the parking lot so that you have to walk farther to reach the door. Every little step you make is progress, and your brain will thank you for the extra endorphins!
Eat a balanced diet
It’s no secret that a well-balanced diet can make you feel amazing inside and out. Including foods that are high in protein, folate, vitamin B-12, and fiber into your diet triggers your brain to produce more dopamine and serotonin, both of which are hormones associated with happy feelings. A healthy diet also gives your body a constant supply of energy, which means you’ll have the physical strength to make it through your day. At the same time, unhealthy foods can have a negative impact on the way you feel. Blood sugar spikes caused by sugars and simple carbohydrates can leave you feeling cranky and low on energy, which is why it’s so important to limit the amount of these foods that you eat. A good place to start is to spend more time cooking at home, where you can control the amount of sugar you’re adding to your meals. If you aren’t sure where to start, join a simple-to-follow diet program to help guide you to make healthy choices and meals that fuel your body as efficiently as possible.
It’s not just about what you eat, but how often you eat as well. Have you ever noticed that you get cranky when you go long periods of time without food? Eating at regular intervals every day keeps your blood sugar levels steady, which leads to a stabilized mood. A skipped meal can cause you to overeat at the next meal, which can lead to a vicious cycle of not giving your body the right amount of fuel when it needs it.
Take time to rest
You’ve likely heard before how important sleep is for your body, and it’s true that if you want your body to function properly, then you need to get plenty of rest. Not only can proper rest prevent you from developing major health issues like stroke and heart disease, but it’s also been linked to improving your concentration and can strengthen your social relationships as well. This means that getting the recommended eight hours of sleep every night is giving you the mental power to conquer anything the world throws at you.
It’s important to remember that resting is more than just physically going to sleep. Give your mind a break from work and stress every now and again. Say no to tasks when you feel you have too much on your plate and set aside time for you to do things that you find relaxing. This way you’ll be able to rebuild the energy you need to keep you going every day.
Spend time alone
The most important part about self-care is the self part. The best way to take care of yourself is to learn who you are and become familiar with your wants and needs. Use this opportunity to let yourself feel all of your emotions and understand the way that your mind works. Carve out time in your schedule to spend a little quality time with yourself. You could do something big like take yourself out on a movie date once a month, or you can keep it simple by reading a book for an hour every night or keeping a journal so that you can visualize your thoughts. Once you start to learn who you are as a person, you’ll be able to better give yourself the things you need to live a happier life.
Meditation is different than simply giving yourself alone time. It’s about being conscious of your present state and taking control over your mind. There are many different types of meditation and the benefits of meditation are endless— from stress relief and reduced anger to improved memory concentration. If you’ve never meditated before or if you need a little help getting started, look for a guided meditation app that can walk you through it. There are also plenty of YouTube videos out there to help both experts and novices connect with their inner self.
Take a vacation
If meditation isn’t your thing and you’re still in need of finding some way to relax, then consider planning a vacation. Whether it’s a solo trip, a family affair, or just a weekend getaway with your spouse or friends, a vacation is a great way to both physically and mentally take you away from the stressors of everyday life. Plan a trip that’s unique to your interests, like taking a tour of an ancient city or going on a wellness retreat. Or you could keep it simple and just plan a trip to a nearby beach or go camping off the grid to connect with yourself and nature. Either way, taking some time away from your day-to-day is a great way to recenter your mind, and you’ll be better rested when you return home.
Wrapping it All Up
Taking care of your inner self is important for many reasons. When you feel healthy on the inside (mentally and physically), you can then be the best you can be for yourself, your loved ones and friends, your career and so much more. Try these tips to take care of your inner self. It’s a great idea to start small by implementing one healthy habit at a time and moving forward from there. If you need personalized guidance with self care and stress management, try our health coaching (in person or virtual) to establish a solid routine that will support your inner health.
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