Self-Care Tips and Ideas to Prevent Burnout
Self-care is essential to help you function during stressful moments. You might feel like you don’t have time to sacrifice while you’re on a tight deadline or under stress, but putting off self-care can derail your entire efforts to be productive.
Self-care can be caring for your physical, emotional, or mental health. Below is a list of self-care activities you can incorporate throughout your day to avoid stress or burnout.
Physical self-care tips and ideas:
1. Exercise: Set aside 30 minutes of physical activity. Exercise can help boost your immune system, reduce stress and improve your mood.
2. Pamper yourself: Whether it’s a mask, facial, manicure/pedicure, sauna session, blowout or massage—these activities help you feel better. A little pampering might mean lighting candles, buying flowers or refreshing the linen in your bedroom. Pampering lets you unwind and improve your mood and bring you to a more relaxed state.
3. Bath: A shower or bath allows your body to relax and gives your mind time to wander. Don’t be surprised if you get out of the shower with a new perspective and ideas on your project or task. Your body is so relaxed during a shower that it releases dopamine which helps boost your creative juices.
4. Fresh haircut or new hair style: A haircut helps you stay and feel fresh. It can boost your self-esteem, self-worth and make you feel like new. Sometimes I’ll cut my bangs, style my hair a different way just to boost my mood and feel special.
5. Essential Oils: Recharge with scents that help you drift into sleep or that help energize you. Try lavender for sleep and relaxation, try a citrus cent for a boost of energy, rosemary and pine oils are known to help with mental clarity and focus.
6. Sleep: Go to bed at a reasonable hour and make sure you get the amount of sleep you need to feel well-rested.
7. Hobbies: Physical hobbies such as gardening, running, surfing or hiking are great for you because they keep you feeling sane when you’re stressed. Self-care comes in different forms, keep up with your hobbies to keep you at 100 percent.
8. Make up and good hygiene: Putting on a different shade of lipstick or new lipgloss can also feel like you’re pampering yourself. It takes a few seconds to do. There are other ways to show your body some love: exfoliating, flossing and waxing.
Emotional self-care tips and ideas:
9. Writing: Keeping a journal helps you reflect and express yourself. You can even use your journal to track what you’re eating and examine how you feel on good and bad days.
10. Stationary: There’s nothing like fresh stationary to help you write out your to-do list or send someone a nice “thank you” card for their support.
11. Social support: When you’re feeling anxious and stressed, you might want to seek solitude to cope, but maintaining healthy relationships helps you overtime with coping with stressful situations. Your support group is there for a reason.
12. Nutrition: When you’re pressed for time you may reach for a fast meal that’s not healthy for you. Instead, take the time to prepare a meal that’s nourishing for you. It’ll probably take you about 20 minutes, but preparing a good meal helps you reset your emotions during the process.
13. Indulge: That’s right. If you need chocolate or something fried to help you feel better, you can do that too. One “good” meal doesn’t make you healthy, just like one “bad” meal doesn’t make you unhealthy. It’s what you do over time. So treat yourself without feeling guilty.
14. Spiritual practice: What centers you? Whether you go to church, attend a weekly congregation, meditate or seek out nature or a mentor, keep it up. If certain groups provide the balance you need to process your emotions, make time for that.
15. Process your emotions: Your thoughts can cause fear and hinder you from taking action. How do you process your emotions? Whether it’s a long walk, meditation or a podcast, make time to become more self-aware of what you’re feeling or seek out professional help.
Mental self-care tips and ideas:
16. Listen to music: Create a playlist that helps put you in a good or creative mood. I use Spotify and I love following their Chill Hits, Mellow Beats, Productive Morning and Stress Relief playlists.
17. Walk in nature: Research shows that people who access green spaces like parks, gardens, playgrounds or have natural landscaping around their home or workplaces enjoy a higher level of health and well-being.
18. Read: Making time to read for at least 20 minutes a day can help you learn new topics and see things in a different way.
19. Watch a funny or relaxing video: I love watching videos of animals because they make me smile and make me happy. I also enjoy watching videos of slime and kinetic sand because they stimulate my mind.
20. Movie or show: Take a break and watch your favorite movie or show.
21. Cooking: Stress cooking is real thing and can help reset your thoughts and bring you to a more stable state.
22. Stimulate your mind: Make time for puzzles, board games, trivia challenges, calligraphy, origami, or coloring. Engaging in these activities can be challenging and fun to play, and help you relax while you are stressed.
23. Airplane Mode: Set your phone on airplane mode and leave it IN another room – out of sight and out of mind.
24. Mindset: Sometimes all you need is to shift your mindset into a more positive state of mind. Negative thoughts can only cause harm, fear and prevent you from moving into a productive or positive state. Talk to your support group, repeat a positive mantra or read some inspiring quotes, books or articles about positive psychology or resiliency to get yourself into the right mindset to make progress.
25. Podcasts: Podcasts can help you relate to whatever you’re feeling about your career, relationship, or personal growth. Subscribe to podcasts that help you reflect, learn and grow.
What’s your favorite way to practice self care? Share your thoughts in the comments below.