Updated: Apr 30
Social media is overflowing with self-care products, practices, ideas, inspiration, techniques, tools, pushes, and prompts. We see posts of spa days, vacations, and innumerable reminders to take care of ourselves.
In celebration of May being Mental Health Awareness Month, we know it’s important to schedule time regularly to relax and recharge. While these posts are mostly well-intentioned, they can actually make practicing self-care overwhelming, feeling like another item on your “to-do” list. For some of us, our days are so busy with work and family obligations self-care becomes the thing we sacrifice because we put ourselves last.
In James Clear’s book, Atomic Habits, he discusses the concept of habit stacking. This concept is based on pairing the new habit with an already existing one, instead of trying to add a new habit at a new time or new location. This can look like drinking a full glass of water after you brush your teeth in the morning, taking 5 breaths before checking your phone, or writing in a gratitude journal before you go to bed at night.
Depending on your kind of work, you may be spending a lot of time on video conferencing. Getting in the habit of waving goodbye at the end of a video call can establish space between you and the other members - a release of anything stressful or troublesome.
Some days you may be too exhausted for self-care. On those days, cut yourself slack and start again tomorrow. That alone is a way of practicing self-care.
We asked the team at Gooding Wellness how they practice self-care. Spoiler alert: We like walking our dogs!!
Michelle: Yoga, walking my dogs, hiking, anything at the beach, and hand-knitting blankets.
Gordon: Long walks in nature with my dog, comedy shows with my wife. We find that laughing has so many healing properties.
Liana: Exercising, walking outside, and binging my favorite Netflix shows.
Julie: Estate sales and recently I’ve been refinishing furniture. It’s very satisfying to give an old piece of furniture new life.
Lisa: hiking/walking out in nature. It calms my senses and grounds me.
Peter: Spending time and walking with my dog out in nature. Also, playing guitar and traveling.
Brian: Hiking, listening to my favorite music, meditation, and visiting thrift shops and flea markets.
Callie: Sitting or walking on the beach (or listening to music in my car if it’s too cold or windy), working out, doing nothing but ordering grub hub and watching movies in a kid-free house.
Nicole: Sitting on the beach, massages, facials, laying on the couch binging a show, yoga, and exercise
Carmela: walking/hiking outside, listening to music, going to concerts, weekend dinner plans with friends or family, pedicures, massages.
Amanda: Exercise, walking my dog, gratitude journal.
As you can see, self-care doesn’t have to be spa days or luxurious vacations. Often it’s the simple things, the space we make to allow ourselves some quiet quality time. What does self-care look like for you? If you struggle to make yourself a priority, our professionals can help you find ways and develop the tools to make those changes. You can click here to book a 15-minute phone consultation with us.
Michelle Gegwich, LMSW