Most of us have heard the term ‘self-care’; it is regularly mentioned on TV, branded all over social media, brought up in conversations especially when the topic of discussion is related to some sort of distress.
Self-care is the act of paying attention to and engaging in practices that promote mental, physical, and emotional wellbeing.
Self-care is a fundamental part of our being; it increases awareness of ourselves and helps us nurture areas of our lives in ways that are individually meaningful and restorative.
It is important to note that self-care is an individual practice. What may be considered self-care for me, may differ and not be relevant to you.
Self-care is none of the above. It is not a specific activity, just for women, and it need not be expensive. Self- care is about replenishing, restoring, and nurturing ourselves. Almost everything we do uses up some sort of energy, this can be emotional, physical, or mental. It is important that as we do and give, we are refilling ourselves.
Self-care helps to boost our mental, physical and emotional wellbeing, improve overall functioning. It should be a priority and intentionally incorporated into our daily lives.
Benefits of self-care:
ABC is a helpful acronym to remind you of the importance of self-care:
The key message here is ensuring our basic mental, physical, social, spiritual, and emotional needs are regularly attended to and met, in order for us to be our best self.
Lastly, self-care practices are not static, they can be practiced anywhere and can change with time. For example, moving to a new city may mean you’re unable to physically visit your family – a meaningful interaction may look like scheduling time to have a video call.
It is important that our self-care practises reflect who we are, our unique needs and the season of life we are in.
If you notice you are struggle with managing your emotional or mental health, it may be helpful to seek specialist support. A therapist can help you make sense of your difficulties and develop a plan that is suited to meeting your needs.
Written by: Dr Bisi Laniyan
Clinical Psychologist at Sage Clinics