Self Care Priorities

What are your self care priorities? SelfcareThe things you absolutely must to feel like you have been kind to your
self on a given day? The non-negotiables of caring for body and soul? It helps to think about these, because they give you a list to tick off when you’re wondering “Did I really take care of myself today?” Then you can either relax into your accomplishment or know exactly where you need to start to make things better.

Here are mine:

Number one definitely is sleep. I’ve learnt to prioritize eight to nine hours a night during my first year of college. It is simply astonishing how much easier and more enjoyable life is when you are running on enough sleep. Everyone knows this intellectually. But try it for a few weeks, and I guarantee that you’ll be surprised. Fun things are even more fun when one is awake while doing them, and not so fun things go from “Ugh I hate this, what did I do to deserve this?” to “Oh, this is actually not so bad.” Sleep enough, and your mood, and in the long run, your health, will do a 180. To achieve it, make bedtime nonnegotiable: at least 8.5h before you have to get up, to give yourself some time to fall asleep.

Next up are two items on equal footing: eating well and exercising. If somehow I can’t do one, I use the other to pick up the slack and not feel too bad, but to feel great, I need to do both. Eating well daily, but not necessarily at every meal, exercising almost daily. And if not true exercise, at least some form of movement, like walking.

The next is my favorite: reading. This is caring for my soul. When alone, that is my favorite thing to do. If I haven’t had a lot of time to read, be it due to school, or friends visiting, or just the general hectics of life, I almost feel a physical craving to sit down with a book. Once I do, I can finally breathe again.

A close second to reading: spending time with loved ones. For obvious reasons.

Writing. Reading soothes my soul, but writing keeps it untangled.

The last and least item on this list is grooming: I’m not really into makeup (but when I do use it, I feel like a self care superhero), so it comes down to manicure (DIY, sans nail polish), pedicure (DIY, currently red), reigning in my eyebrows, and washing my hair at a socially acceptable frequency. The basics.

If I do the first three on the list, I know I don’t need to worry. If I do the first five, I know life is good. If I do them all, I’m truly proud.

What are the most important parts of your self care routine?

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18 thoughts on “Self Care Priorities

  1. You nailed all mine already! Well, except for the manicures and pedicures. As an introvert, I don’t tend to flock to those types of things. I also like to unwind with an hour of television before bed. Helps me shut down my mind and get it ready for those 8 hours of sleep. 🙂

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  2. In addition to your list, I also like to connect with nature in some way, even if something simple like noticing the colors in the evening sky. But that said, some days the list feels overwhelming without adding more. In fact, to see all these things listed, I’m struck by how many items there are…no wonder I can’t get to all of them some days. Has me wondering what nonessential things I may be spending my time on and can let go.

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  3. ooooh I love this post! I’m all for sleep (my BF jokingly makes fun of me because I fall asleep super early all of the time). I also take pride in grooming; I have a series on my blog called “self date sunday” where I indulge…whether that’s with a deep read, a bubble bath, or a new beauty product/facial.
    I should definitely start prioritizing exercise though…I just got a new job that’s the most sedentary I’ve ever had and I’m sure it will start taking it’s toll! lol

    XO Sahra
    Que Sera Sahra

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  4. I have found it very helpful to keep a Sleep and Self Care Diary. I shared my diary template at http://is.gd/selfcarediary — it warns you to be careful opening the link, but it just contains the diary as a pdf and as an Excel sheet in case you want to personalize it.

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