by Guest Blogger, Emma Grace Brown
When you think of self-care, things like paying for a spa treatment or taking an hour-long yoga class may come to mind. However, caring for yourself doesn’t need to be time-consuming or costly. In fact, PsychCentral says that self-care can include any type of activity you enjoy—even if it’s something as simple as reading a book, reflecting on your day while washing the dishes, or giving yourself eight full hours of sleep each night.
For optimal health, it’s important to set aside some time each day to give yourself the care you need—regardless of whether you have 15 minutes or several hours to spare. If you’re looking for easy ways to incorporate self-care into your daily routine, even if you’re short on time and money, read on!
Turn Everyday Activities Into “Me Time”
Even if you don’t have time to soak in the bathtub or play your favorite video game, you can turn some basic everyday activities into a time for meditating, reflecting on the day, and de-stressing. For instance, you may be able to meditate and calm your mind whenever you:
- Cook dinner.
- Devour your favorite evening snack.
- Take a walk or hike through nature.
- Commute to and from work.
- Lie in bed after waking up in the morning.
Even if you struggle to cook dinner or get out of bed in the morning, you may start to enjoy these everyday activities once they become your special time for practicing self-care.
Use Your Hard-Earned Vacation Time
Unfortunately, approximately 55 percent of Americans did not use all of their paid vacation time in 2018. For those that did use their paid time off (PTO), only a portion of their vacation days were used to travel—likely due to the high cost of traveling. While it’s true that vacationing isn’t cheap, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t splurge on an occasional getaway for the sake of your physical, mental, and emotional health—no matter how small or inexpensive the trip may be.
If you’re looking to take a relaxing vacation that allows you to lounge on the beach and easily explore a variety of popular attractions, staying in San Diego may be ideal for you. According to Turnkey, San Diego is a desirable destination for tourists largely due to its warm, 70-degree weather on most days and its pristine coastline that stretches 70 miles. Plus, San Diego is home to several beaches including Pacific Beach and Cardiff State Beach—prime locations for surfers—as well as the San Diego Zoo and the cultural hotspot Gaslamp Quarter.
To save on your trip to San Diego, look for a vacation rental or hotel that’s closest to the activities and attractions that are most appealing to you. Additionally, you can save on travel expenses if you vacation with a group of friends or family members. Typically, groups of four travelers are ideal for saving money on a vacation home, hotel room, or rental vehicle.
Laugh More Often
The short- and- long-term health benefits of laughter range from stress relief and improved mood, to pain relief and better immune function. Plus, laughter doesn’t cost a dime! Here are a few simple ways to welcome more laughter into your life:
- Check out the Laugh Factory’s latest jokes.
- Take a few minutes to visit one of the funniest websites on the internet, such as The Onion, Funny or Die, or The Oatmeal.
- Borrow a joke book from your local public library.
- Keep a record of your favorite jokes, comedies, comic strips, and books, and refer to them whenever you need a good laugh.
- Explore the benefits of laughter yoga.
Give Yourself the Care You Need
As you can see, caring for your physical, mental, and emotional health doesn’t need to cost a whole lot of money or take hours out of your day. As long as you’re engaging in an activity that relaxes you, improves your mood and energy levels, and helps you to live a happier, healthier life, you’ll be on the right path to giving yourself the care you need to thrive in a chaotic world.
by Emma Grace Brown
Note from Lianda
One of the best self-care activities that I recommend is "Cardio-Contemplation" which is a kind of meditation. Instead of focusing on your breath or other types of meditation, HeartMath's meditation is heart-centered.
You focus on feeling joy, love and your heart remembering those feelings. AND, you use a device called Inner Balance that helps you learn how to keep that focus by giving you a kind of bio-feedback.
You learn how to keep your focus which calms your entire body and mind. The effects last for HOURS! And you can become more resilient to stress and learn how to ignore things that used to bother you! It's a great daily self-care!