Let’s clear up a common misconception from the start: self-care is not synonymous with selfishness. In fact, it’s the opposite of that. In order to do your job, attend school, connect with friends and care for family, you have to care for yourself first. International Self-Care Day, which takes place on July 24th, acknowledges the importance of charging your physical, mental and emotional batteries and reminds us that self-care is an ongoing practice.
Here are a few tips to help you get started:
MOVE BECAUSE YOU LOVE YOUR BODY
In the world of fitness, movement is too often associated solely with working out to change the way your body looks so that you can learn to love it. We’re here to upend that. Move because you love your body not because you want to change it. And forget the idea that you have to break a sweat to benefit from movement. Whether it’s a HIIT workout, walking, or stretching, the act of moving your body puts you in touch with your physical vitality. It doesn’t have to take long either, so consider creating 15 to 30 minutes of space a day to simply appreciate the way your body moves.
HOLISTIC NUTRITION OVER TEMPORARY DIETS
If you’re going to move because you love your body, you should eat because you love it, too. The food you put in your body shouldn’t be viewed as a reward, punishment or passing trend. It’s what fuels you day in and day out. Consistent food choices that are unrefined, unprocessed, organic and whole can have a lasting impact on your quality of life, so consider putting in the time to understand the relationship between food and how your body responds to it. That includes habits like reading food labels, taking note of how certain foods make you feel after you eat them, and understanding the unique nutritional needs in the different stages of your life.
GET YOUR SNOOZE ON
What happens in your sleep is as important as what happens when you’re awake, so don’t feel guilty about snoozing a proper seven to eight hours every night. Insufficient sleep leaves us vulnerable to attention lapses, reduced cognition, delayed reactions and mood shifts. It can also lead to more serious issues like chronic sleep deprivation that’s been linked to diseases and medical conditions including high blood pressure, heart disease and poor mental health. To ensure you get a good night’s sleep go to bed and wake up at the same time each day, avoid caffeine, large meals and drinks before bed, don’t take naps after 3 p.m., keep the room temperature cool and last, but not least, set aside electronic devices.
TAKE TIME TO APPRECIATE THE PRESENT
That meeting that’s coming up. Those things you forgot to grab at the grocery store. Tomorrow’s lunch date with a friend. The chores you haven’t done. And yes, those TikTok videos that make it so easy to keep scrolling. Hour in and hour out, something or someone is clambering for our attention, so it can be hard to appreciate the present, but there are a few ways to center yourself in the moment. We recommend practices like meditation, journaling and spending time by yourself with no distractions.
LET US HELP
When you do yoga, you’re checking off several of the self-care boxes we just discussed. Yoga gets you moving, it can help you fall asleep and its breathing techniques ground you in the present. Our free "21-Day Yoga Transformation" program will guide you toward a healthy habit of daily yoga practice with 20-minute sequences. Plus, as a bonus, we’ll help you explore yoga class options when you’re ready to move on to more advanced skills.
- Develop a healthy habit of daily yoga practice
- Progressively learn fundamental poses that will challenge you
- Become stronger with strengthening poses
- Deepen your flexibility with stretching poses
- Get the inside scoop on yoga class options in SoCal