First we build habits, then they build us. Since launching Self Care Manifesto and the self care reminder newsletter, I’ve learnt so much about the positive impact self care can have on your life. Small tasks really do add up overtime, so I wanted to share with you a few things I’m doing currently to look after myself.
In the morning
Breakfast and morning chill
My mornings used to look a little something like this… Set 5 alarms to gradually wake up. Get myself ready for work. Dash out and grab a Starbucks or Co-op pastry on the way to work. It wasn’t great for me or my bank balance!
I know a lot of people will be thinking ‘I already have breakfast this is so basic’ but there are so many people trapped in a routine like me. Breakfast is genuinely a new thing for me. I remember skipping breakfast in my teens and whilst I’m sure my mum tried to feed me toast in the morning when I was little, I’ve have never been a fan. There are people, like me, who think they are too busy for breakfast, scraping by with a granola bar/croissant in the morning.
These days I take a few spoonfuls of Alpro yoghurt and throw in some granola and fruit. I don’t know if it’s healthy and I’m not too fussed if it is. As long as I’m having something better than a venti caramel macchiato I’m pleased with myself.
Being more mindful of what content I’m consuming
Like many people, I instantly reach for my phone and iPad in the morning. Instead of scrolling through notifications (I’m not that popular), I’d go straight to Youtube pundits to discover all the bad news I missed from the day before.
Now I’m not saying we shouldn’t watch the news and get clued up on current events, but take a moment to consider what you’re consuming at the very start of your day. For me, I was getting sucked into some heavy topics at the crack of dawn and as soon as I stepped away from that I realised how toxic my habit was.
Now I start the morning by watching a TED Talk in the background whilst I’m getting ready and having breakfast. Just something a little more positive to subtly get my day off to a better start.
‘What I did list’
Next to my ‘To Do’ list I’ve been writing a ‘What I Did’ list. It helps me keep track of everything I did during the day, just in case I go off track on other urgent tasks. This has really been helping my anxiety as it make me realise that I haven’t squandered my time, I’ve still been productive even if I didn’t get everything done on my ‘To Do’ list.
Getting fresh air
My boss is very big on making sure you get up to stretch your legs and get air on your lunch. I’ve been trying to bring in packed lunches so I don’t need to leave and grab lunch, but I still make an effort to leave the office and go for a wander when I can. I find that I’m far less sleepy towards the end of the day when I’ve been active on my lunch break.
Wearing myself out at the gym
Ok this one is a work in progress because I’m not the most avid gym goer. I am trying though! Sometimes I struggle to sleep and honestly nothing makes me more ready for bed than wearing myself out at the gym.
Sheet mask session
When I’m going to bed, I turn off my main bedroom light and leave my bathroom light on. This illuminates my room without being too intense. I’ll do this about half an hour before bed so that I have time to squeeze in a facemask.
Any face mask will do but I’ve become fond of week-night sheet mask sessions because they’re less messy and cleaning up thick mud masks seems to wake me up after I’ve spent time chilling out.
Dead weighting my bed
Ok this one might sound silly, but it’s something that has been helping me force myself to sleep.
I don’t know if it works because I told myself it does, but regardless I keep using this method to put me to sleep. After doing my regular sheet mask routine, I put my phone aside, set my alarms and make sure everything is on charge. Then I’ll like flat as if I’m trying to dead weight the bed.
I don’t put my head on the pillow, I just put my face straight into the mattress and focus on slowing my breathing. When I do this I find it much easier to zone out and fatigue just washes over me.
I’m going to make these small task updates a seasonal thing, but if you’d like weekly self care reminders you can sign up to my mailing list!