Nothing is more important than your health, which is why it’s essential to take good care of yourself. When you’re working, studying, volunteering or raising a family, however, it can hard to find the time to prioritize your own well-being. Fortunately, these handy tips will provide you with simple ways you can focus on better self-care…
- Revaluate your outlook
We tend to take our health for granted, even if we’re not feeling our best. If you’re able to function and keep up with your day-to-day routine, you might assume that your health is going just fine. In reality, neglecting your health could simply be delaying the onset of future issues.
If you keep promising yourself you’ll become healthier, go to the gym more or start meditating but you never seem to get around to it, take the time to reassess your lifestyle. Many people experience feelings of guilt when they take the time to practice self-care but taking care of your health is essential if you want to be able to support the people around you.
- Go for regular checkups
If you only see the doctor when you’re ill or visit the dentist when you’ve got a toothache, you aren’t getting the care you need. Routine checkups are designed to identify potential health problems early on when minimally invasive treatment can be used to remedy any problems. In many cases, attending regular checkups can even prevent health problems developing, so it’s well worth factoring them into your schedule.
Although time is a big factor that prevents people from making appointments for regular checkups, cost can be an issue too. With affordable health insurance, however, you’ll have peace of mind that any necessary treatment will be fully or partially funded. In addition to this, there are many health centers that offer free or reduced-cost consultations to people who need them.
- Get some exercise
We all know that exercise is good for us, but we don’t always realize just how beneficial it can be. Regular exercise improves your cardiovascular health, minimizes stress, lowers blood pressure, reduces your risk of developing diabetes and helps to build strength. With so many benefits associated with exercise, it’s one of the easiest ways to improve your health.
What’s more – it doesn’t have to come at a cost. If you don’t want to pay for a gym membership or can’t afford to attend expensive classes, there are plenty of free alternatives. Running is a fantastic form of exercise and it’s something that doesn’t require any special equipment. Similarly, strength training can be done at home without any weights and help you increase your muscle mass quickly and effectively.
- Focus on your mental health
Your mental health is inextricably linked to your physical health, so be sure to adopt self-care techniques that nourish your mind, as well as your body. When you feel stressed or anxious, it can lead to a whole host of physical symptoms and can even increase your risk of developing certain physical health problems.
By finding healthy ways to cope with stress, you can feel better and enjoy a calmer state of mind. Meditation and mindfulness are particularly effective in reducing anxiety and they don’t require specialist training or instruction. If you’re finding it tricky to quieten your mind, don’t panic! It can take a while to become a master of mindfulness or meditation, so persevere and you’ll soon see results.
Although you can practice stress-reduction techniques alone, there are growing online communities dedicated to helping people learn how to meditate more successfully. With free videos, tutorials, and guides, you can enjoy the benefits of good mental health sooner than you think.
- Be social
When we don’t take care of ourselves, it isn’t just our physical health that suffers; our social interactions usually take a nosedive too. If you find yourself avoiding social events or preferring to be alone, it could be a sign that you’re not prioritizing self-care. While it’s perfectly natural to want to enjoy some downtime once in a while, a sudden disinterest in being social could be indicative of other issues, such as depression or anxiety.
If you’ve been neglecting your social life because of a busy schedule or increasing responsibilities, find a way to recalibrate your timetable. As people spend more time at home, digital socializing is becoming increasingly popular. Using video conferencing, texts, calls and social media to interact with loved ones is a great way to maintain social connections, even when you can’t spend time with people face to face.
- Get more rest
The National Sleep Foundation estimates that adults need between 7-10 hours of sleep a night, depending on their age and physical lifestyle. In reality, a surprisingly small number of people get this amount of rest. With busy schedules keeping us on the go until late into the evening and early morning alarm calls forcing us out of bed, getting a healthy amount of sleep can be extremely difficult.
Furthermore, excess stress or anxiety can make it hard to drop off when you do get the chance to sleep. If you spend most of the night struggling to nod off, there’s a good chance your mind is preventing you from getting the rest your body needs to reenergize.
Creating a sleep hygiene routine can be an effective way of restoring your sleep pattern and getting good quality rest. By creating a calm, relaxing bedroom environment and taking the time to wind down before you go to bed, you’ll be more likely to get a decent night’s rest than if you keep yourself busy until your head hits the pillow.
Staying Happy and Healthy
When you take better care of yourself, you’ll notice positive changes in your mood. Simply by prioritizing your own well-being, you can improve your physical, mental and emotional health. No matter what stage of life you’re at, it’s never too late to introduce new self-care routines into your schedule, so why not get started today?
CANDY TAI is a wife to David and mom of 5 with a degree in Communications. She's a native Texan (Hook 'Em Horns!) who's been making her home in the Kansas City metro area for nearly 15 years. She loves being able to shuffle her kids from their various sports activities, piano lessons, and school activities. She enjoys fashion, beauty, reality TV, and moviegoing.