Girl, I know the struggle – you have 5,000 things going on a day, your brain is constantly on and sometimes it feels so hard to turn your brain off and just relax. That is pretty much my struggle every single day! We are busy girl bosses and it can be hard to squeeze time into our schedules for a little self-care and self-love. What if I told you that chances are if you practice self-care daily that you will actually find that you’ll be more productive? At the start of January after I came back from vacation, I made it a point to spend time for myself every day. Whether it was 15 minutes, 1 hour or dedicating an entire day on the weekend to self-care…I made it a habit and it’s a habit that has helped me feel more focused both at work and in my every day life.
So continuing with the self-love theme this month, today I’m sharing some self-care ideas you can do no matter how much time you have!
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If you only have 5 minutes, here are some different ways you can practice self-care!
Do a 5-minute mindful meditation
With websites and apps like YouTube, Headspace and so much more – it’s never been easier to find guided meditations that you can do no matter how much time you have, even if it’s just for 5 minutes!
Take some deep breaths
Don’t underestimate the calming power of taking some deep breaths and connecting to your breath again. If I ever feel myself getting anxious about something, I will take a few deep breaths and it always helps calm me down.
Read a Favorite Blog or Website
Have 5 minutes? That’s all the time you need to read some new posts on your favorite blog or website (like The Sophisticated Gal)! If you need to find some blog posts to read, head on over to Pinterest and do a search for any topic you’re feeling like reading up on. Or you can just scroll through Pinterest, I find that really relaxing 😉
Get Outside and Go on a Walk
Did you know that spending just 5 minutes outside can immediately help improve your mood and self-esteem? Yup, you read that right! You’re just 5 minutes away from a better mood! We spend so much of our time inside, so getting outside for some fresh air and a little bit of sun can make us feel refreshed.
Pet a Dog or Cat
The puppy snuggles have way more benefits for our health than you might think! So if you were looking for an excuse to snuggle up with pup (or cat) more, here it is! Just petting a dog or cat can help you feel more relaxed and less anxious.
Listen to Relaxing Songs
I have multiple “relaxing” playlists on my Spotify account, one for each mood! You’ll find some John Mayer and Michael Bublé on my relaxation playlist, I love listening to them when I just need some time to relax. If you have specific songs that help you feel more relaxed, listen to them when you have 5 minutes to give yourself for some self-care!
Read Some Inspiring Quotes
You all know how much I love some inspirational quotes! Heck, I have a weekly quote that I post on my Instagram as a part of my #sophisticatedwisdom series. Clearly I love inspirational quotes and for good reason! They can instantly make us feel more motivated and set intentions for our day. So if you have five minutes, peruse the #sophisticatedwisdom hashtag on Instagram or check out Pinterest for some inspirational quotes to boost your mood. I’ve got lots of inspirational quotes on my Boss Babe Quotes board!
If you have 15 minutes
Make Yourself a Cup of Tea or Coffee & Actually Enjoy It!
How many times do you actually sit down and enjoy your coffee or tea? Honestly during the week, I feel like I never take the time to just enjoy my morning cup of joe…but this year I’ve been trying to make it more of a habit to enjoy my coffee!
On the weekends, I tend to have slower mornings and this is definitely when I make sure to just enjoy my cup of coffee or afternoon tea.
Read a Chapter from Your Favorite Book
Do you have a reading list for this year? If you are looking for some inspiration, check out what’s on my reading list for 2018 and the books I think every millennial woman needs to read. While you’re sitting down to enjoy your cup of tea, read a chapter from a book you’re currently reading. Doing this can also help give you new ideas, especially if it’s a book focused on improving yourself or productivity hacks.
If you’re more into podcasts, you can also use this time to catch up on some podcast episodes. Many podcasts offer episodes that are shorter lengths. If you’re looking for some new podcasts to listen to, check out my favorite career-oriented podcasts.
Color in a Coloring Book
Remember how relaxing it was as a kid to color in a coloring book? Who said we’re too old to do that! There have been studies that have shown coloring in a coloring book is a great way to practice mindfulness and replace negative thoughts with positive ones. So give it a try!
I found this one on Amazon that’s specifically for stress relief and it’s under $10!
Call a Friend or Family Member
Sometimes we just need to talk it out and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that! So if you have 15 minutes, that’s a perfect amount of time to call and catch up with a friend or family member 🙂
If you have an hour
Practice Yoga or Workout
If you’ve been following me on Instagram or are a part of my email list, then you probably know that in January I did a 30-day yoga challenge! It was so beneficial, not only on a physical level but mental as well. I have always struggled with focusing on the present, I’m always thinking about the future or getting caught up in the past. By practicing yoga or taking an hour to workout, I am focused on myself in the present! Plus when they say “you’ll never regret a workout”, it’s sooo true!
Change into comfy PJs and Watch a TV Show
This is one of my favorites, especially on a Friday night! I love changing into my PJs and catching up on some of my favorite TV shows or a new movie 🙂 This is a perfect way to practice self-care and just relax. Pair it with a glass of wine and some popcorn and it’s the perfect night.
Make Yourself a Balanced Meal
Whenever I have the time to try out a new recipe, I get so excited because it’s one of my favorite things to do! One of the things I’ve been working on this year is making more balanced meals that are both healthy and delicious. When we eat well and take care of our bodies, we have more energy to give and we feel so much better about ourselves too! Here are some nutritious recipe books that you can buy off of Amazon and start trying out some new (healthy) recipes.
Thug Kitchen ($15)
Clean and Re-organize a Room in Your House
If you’re like me and actually find organizing to be relaxing, then this one’s for you! If you have a room or space that you’ve been wanting to organize, this is a perfect way to spend an hour and can be very calming. Not to mention, I always feel like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders after I re-organize. It always makes me feel so much lighter 🙂
Write a “Grateful For” List
What are you grateful for? Write it down and use it as a reference when you’re having a bad day. If you have an hour or even 10 minutes, this is a great exercise to do to make you feel better and do some self-reflection.
There are even cute journals you can purchase just to write down what you’re grateful for. Here are some that I found on Amazon that are adorable and reasonably priced 🙂
52 Lists for Happiness ($12)
There are so many different self-care activities you can do, no matter how much time you have! Incorporating some of these into your daily routine will help you feel so much better, because we all deserve to spend some time taking care of ourselves. When we take care of ourselves, we’ll have more love to give to the rest of the world.
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