Self-care for mental health is a trendy phrase, but it requires radical self-acceptance. A common misconception people associate with self-care is selfishness or overindulgence. Treating yourself means more than buying a new wardrobe or ordering food for delivery; it means loving yourself (flaws and all) and tending to your needs so you can properly care for others.
Self-care for mental health helps you cope with daily stressors
According to Mental Health America, the percentage of American adults with symptoms of anxiety or depression has increased over the last two years to 41.5%, and women tend to experience depression at roughly twice the rate of men. More people are staying in, isolating, and putting off travel or trips they’d otherwise be going on. With technology, pretty much everyone has access to the continuous news cycle. People are feeling lonely, anxious, and overwhelmed, and it can affect mental health in a big way.
Studies show that when you take care of your body and your mind, you’re more likely to manage the stressors in your life and take care of your health and well-being.
Learning about self-care
Self-care is anything that you can do to take care of yourself to stay physically, mentally, emotionally healthy. Research shows that self-care helps promote positive outcomes like resiliency, handling stress, and living longer. So, show yourself some love this Valentine’s Day by getting enough sleep, eating nutritious meals, spending time outdoors in the fresh air, expressing gratitude, and being creative with a hobby.
Clear boundaries are good for you
Self-care includes checking in with your body regularly. Oftentimes when someone is grumpy, sad, angry, stressed, or frantic, it can be a sign that their body is overwhelmed, tired, and desperately needs rest and quiet. You might feel guilty when you prioritize your needs, but remember that It is healthy to advocate for yourself and set boundaries so you can feel in alignment with your values. Boundaries create space and separation between you and the other parts of your life.
Set aside alone time every day, no questions asked. Reading a book, journaling, taking a nap, going for a walk to meditate, exercising, or watching your favorite movie are all good ways to help you calm your mind and rest after a hectic day. Commit to a certain number of hours for work and then hold yourself to that schedule. It can be tempting to give your business more and more of yourself, but if you burn out, you won’t be able to succeed or help your team. Put your phone on silent for a few hours in the evening. Say “No” to volunteering or helping when you’re over capacity. Start your day by listing three things you’re grateful for.
Have compassion, patience, and love for yourself
According to the National Library of Medicine, when you practice self-love combined with compassion for others, you become more resilient against trials and adversity. When you love yourself you’re more likely to achieve your goals. Yet with all the benefits of self-love, it’s a habit that few people practice. Self-love means holding yourself in high regard, accepting yourself as you are right now, and having patience, forgiveness, and compassion for your emotions and mistakes.
When you love yourself you’re more likely to take care of yourself and your health. Mindfulness exercises and mediation have been proven to lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol and help you deal with stressful situations.
Prioritize your potential
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