March 17, 2016 3 min read
Sometimes we need to be reminded to slow down, take a deep breath and take time for ourselves. Stop neglecting yourself. Relaxing isn’t something you should wait for until you have the time. The downward spiral of anxiety, depression and beating yourself up for every mistake can be lessened by simply making more time for you. It’s easy to let other people’s opinions bring you down, but what’s important to remember is that you have to live with yourself every day, so you might as well start loving the things that make you unique. Here are some tips on how to better relax, love yourself and take care of yourself.
Start your morning right
Think twice before you replace the morning sun with a blinding phone screen. Instead of reading about everything and everyone else, focus on you. Get a good stretch in, wash your face and make a healthy breakfast. If, today, you feel like pancakes and eggs, go for it. The morning shapes your attitude for the rest of the day.
Get rid of the bad
Remind yourself that you are in control of your health, relationships and career. While there are things in life you can’t control, there are plenty of things in your life that you can.
Focus on the things you can control: eliminate toxic people from your life, squeeze physical activity into your schedule, get more sleep and eat more vegetables. These little changes will add up and give you an overall better sense of self.
Take one day at a time
One of the best ways to deplete your anxiety is to stop worrying and start living. You can’t change the past, and there are plenty of your worries that are not likely to happen. Make a list of everything that needs to get done today, prioritize and tackle what you can without getting overwhelmed. Be sure to schedule in time to relax too.
Don’t deprive yourself
Listen to your body. Hungry? Eat. Thirsty? Drink a large glass of water. Or two. Need to use the bathroom? Don’t wait until you feel like bursting. Tired? Curl up on the couch. Feel a headache coming on? Don’t suffer for hours before seeking relief. Depriving yourself of basic needs and feeling uncomfortable is not a sensible way to deal with your problems, and maybe it’s time to internalize this list.
This one is so important. Not getting enough sleep can not only make you sluggish, but can cause an increase in blood pressure. Do it right: take off your makeup, grab a soft blanket, some tea and avoid the temptation of screens and social media for at least an hour before hitting the pillow. Still doesn’t work? Take a 20-minute nap in the middle of the madness and clear your head. You will feel refreshed and ready to tackle the rest of your “to dos.”
Do what you love
Remember, it’s okay to have fun. You deserve it. Ignore guilt from not doing something you consider productive; whether your fun is choosing to sit in a bath with a good book or bar hopping and dancing all night with your girls, put aside stressors and work to make room for healthy brain activity.
Try something new
Don’t underestimate the benefit of trying something new, whether it’s the new yoga studio down the road or the dusty guitar hanging on the wall. If you have always wanted to travel to Thailand, put away the excuses and make a plan.
It’s not materialistic, it’s healthy! Get that new sweater that you’ve been eyeing. Overflow your fro-yo cup with toppings. Sometimes you need a break from restrictions.
Take control of your thoughts
Your self-perception is the root of how others act toward you and the key to healthy self-love. If you continue to beat yourself up, even your accomplishments will be undermined. Organize your thoughts and relax by meditating for 15 minutes. There are some great guided meditations on YouTube.
Self-love leads to a happier life, if we don’t take care of ourselves – who will?