Over three-quarters of Americans in employment are experiencing worker burnout. And one in ten employed Americans have total burnout.
You get burnout when you undergo prolonged and excessive mental, physical, and emotional stress. You’re doing too many activities that empty your tank, and not enough self-care activities to fill it back up.
That answers the question “why is self-care important?” But, if you’re new to the idea of self-care, you might not know what it involves.
Don’t worry, these are some examples of self-care activities you can do to lessen your physical, emotional, and mental stress. They will help you live a well-rounded and fulfilling life.
1. Pamper Yourself
There’s a misconception that self-care starts and ends with “taking a bath” or “lighting a scented candle.”
Indeed, pampering yourself won’t cure your burnout. But it’s less about the pampering and more about the benefits you get.
When you take time out to get a massage, you are putting your well-being first. Not only are you saying you deserve to take the time to get one, but that you deserve to relax, too.
Here are some other self-care activities you can do to pamper yourself:
- Manicures and pedicures
- Buy new make-up
- Buy fancy skincare products
- Do your hair and make-up
Whether you get a professional to pamper you or do it yourself to save money (also an act of self-care!), it all counts.
2. Schedule Guilt-Free Downtime
Does spending ten minutes scrolling through Facebook or watching funny cat videos on YouTube make you feel guilty? It shouldn’t!
You cannot be productive every second you are awake. Sometimes, you need to indulge in some mindless downtime to recharge.
If it makes you feel better, schedule some of these pleasurable self-care activities in your calendar or add them to your to-do list. That way, when you watch an episode of Friends on Netflix for the thousandth time, it will be guilt-free.
3. Find an Exercise You Enjoy
You already know that exercise is like self care for your body. But did you know that exercise can do wonders for your mental health, too? It improves cognitive function and reduces negative moods.
The key is to find a sport or exercise that you enjoy doing so you will stick to it. Some people prefer classes, and some people prefer exercising by themselves. Some prefer going to the gym, and some prefer playing a sport.
Here are some suggestions of great exercises for self-care:
Whatever exercise you choose, add it to your weekly calendar so you don’t forget.
4. Get Creative and Crafty
Some people think there are four types of hobbies that everyone should have. These are:
- Active hobby
- Creative hobby
- Cerebral hobby
- Social hobby
Some hobbies can overlap. For example, if you’re part of a book club then it counts as a cerebral and social hobby.
But having a creative hobby is one of the most fun self-care activities you can have. And you don’t have to be Picasso or Mozart to enjoy a creative outlet because self-care is about doing things for yourself.
Here are some suggestions of creative hobbies you could get into:
If one creative hobby turns out to not be for you, try another one! Trying new things is the only way to find out what you like and don’t like.
5. Set Boundaries
Kids are great at voicing their opinion if there is something they don’t want to do. Saying “no” comes easy for them. But for some reason, adults find it very difficult to say no in both their work and personal life.
So, one of the best self-care activities for adults is to set boundaries.
For example, if your boss expects you to answer work calls and emails at home outside of working hours, tell them this is unreasonable. If your partner expects you to take care of all the housework and childcare, voice your objections.
Only by speaking up can you protect your right to downtime and self-care.
6. Learn a New Skill for Fun
Do you only take courses or qualifications to further your career? When was the last time you learned a new skill for fun?
If you’ve always wanted to learn photography, speak a new language, or perform basic car mechanics then you should!
Research night classes at your local learning center and see what they offer. Or, take an online course. Broadening your mind and skillset is one of the best mental self-care activities.
7. Spend Time Outdoors
It’s true what they say, nature is healing. The more time you spend outdoors, the calmer and more relaxed you will feel.
Whether you like gardening, going for walks, or packing a picnic with loved ones, these are all great outdoor self-care activities.
8. Edit Your Social Media Feeds
Many people know that spending too much time online, and on social media, in particular, is bad for their mental health and self-care. But, did you know that who you follow online and what you’re looking at can have an impact as well?
If there are people on Facebook who are argumentative or negative and put you in a bad mood, unfollow them. And if there are people on Instagram who make you feel bad about yourself because you’re comparing your lives too often, mute them.
It’s not personal and it does not mean you dislike these people, but it’s important for your self-care. And if you only unfollow and mute, they won’t know that you’ve hidden their updates from your feed.
Which of These Self-Care Activities Speaks to You?
If you’ve let work, the online world, and family commitments take over your life, these self-care activities will help you take back control.
You are the main character of your life so it’s time to grab the wheel and drive.
True self-care means not burying your head in the sand and being your best self. Don’t forget to browse our finance and health articles to get to grips with all the important things in life!