Whether you're in a self-care rut or are completely new to self-care, figuring out how to incorporate daily self-care so that it doesn't feel like one more obligation on your to-do list will truly change your life.
In fact, a good daily self-care routine will actually end up creating a life that doesn't feel like a plate with obligations constantly pouring over.
How can I practice daily self-care?
Daily self-care is essentially getting into the habit of loving, honoring and taking care of yourself. It's figuring out the small ways in which you reconnect with yourself consistently.
Every year that we grow older we learn so much more about ourselves. I definitely learned more this year about what I love and what I don't love so much; I like to go ham on twinkle lights and a minimalist-styled home, and I don't like over-extending myself with too many outings or obligations.
I did a little mini review of what worked for me and what didn't. It looked like this.
What daily self-care things worked for me
Morning worksheet: I love a morning worksheet because it's simple, quick but extremely powerful. There are different ones depending on what you need; I have one for moms, entrepreneurs, law of attraction/mindset, moon/spiritual and one that incorporates the spiritual energy points.
Yoga: I'm still a beginner, but yoga has made me begin to fall in love with my body. It's spirituality for your body and it feels so damn good. Definitely a keeper in my self-care routine.
Clean house: this past year, I've made my bed every day and tidied up all around me. I've done several big purges and I still do them about twice a year. I've always thought I have to fill up any empty space with some sort of decor, but no....I like empty space. Clear, empty spaces help me to feel like I can breathe and think.
Clothes that make me feel good: I have embraced the fact that I am a homebody. I used to fill up my closet with "outside" clothes and wear clothes around the house that didn't make me feel good, but this year I bought lots of cute lounge clothes, even though no one sees them except me pretty much. They are worth the mood boost!
Journaling: journaling remains my spiritual therapy. The way it works is I write down my thoughts and I receive guidance back through the Universe/my higher self.
Reading inspirational books: one of the biggest ways to shift your life is to shift your beliefs, and a hack to doing this is inundating your mind with material that supports new beliefs. I wrote a post here on my favorite mindset books and another one here on self-care books.
Listening to inspirational videos/podcasts: I love listening to Abraham Hicks recordings on Youtube, as well as anything by Bruce Lipton. It's more of the idea of the whole inundating the mind with a new belief system that actually supports you rather than brings you down.
Screen free time: nothing resets me quite like disconnecting from the world. I removed notifications from my phone a few months ago and that really helped me cut back on checking it. I want to start leaving it in another room rather than feeling the need to always have it with me.
What didn't work for me
Forcing anything - sometimes I felt anxious when I was doing self-care time because I didn't feel like doing anything "productive". That's okay! When I feel like that, I know it means I need to go get some food, get under the covers and binge watch my favorite show or read a good book. That in itself is revolutionary self-care as well, because we all go through phases throughout the month, and sometimes we just need to veg out.
Going without self-care for even a few days - if you read this post, you know what happened to me when I went one month without self-care. It wasn't pretty and I learned a lot from it. From now on, even during times when things get busy, I will take at least 30 minutes to myself a night and will for sure make time for my morning worksheet every morning.
New things I want to incorporate
Hygge: I think hygge should be my middle name. Pronounced "hoo-guh," it's a Danish term that means "a quality of cosiness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being,". Yes to this.
More twinkle lights. More cozy blankets. More candles, more pillows, more pretty coffee mugs.
Be more daring with my daily intended feelings: every day on my morning worksheet I write down 3 ways I want to feel because when I do that, I almost always end up feeling that way during the day whether I realize it at the time or not. Intention is super powerful and writing things down is basically signing your name on the dotted line to the Universe.
Last year I wrote down things like "still" and "calm" a lot. Those were great, but I want to be more daring this year. I've been writing down "successful," "abundant," and "inspired." I cannot even begin to tell you what a shift this one small thing is causing in my life. Write down how you REALLY want to feel, don't limit yourself.
Heal my body image: my self-love improves every year that I get older, but it's definitely an ongoing process. I've honestly never liked my body. It's never been enough in my mind, and now that I've had kids and it's changed, I've been even harder on it. It's not something light, this dislike I have of my body; it goes to the very core of me.
I can't be fully happy when I feel ashamed. And what am I ashamed about? This healthy body that has given me children? That allows me to do so much? That's my portal to being here in this human experience? That's soft and mine? Part of my self-care is going to be releasing these damaging thoughts regarding my body through meditation and EFT tapping.
Practice feeling my dreams NOW: I don't know about you, but I keep so many of my desires in a future feeling place. But in doing this, they stay in the future and never the NOW.
I want this AMAZING house. I don't even know what house or where it is, but it's amazing because it's perfect for me. It's got big trees in the yard and multiple fireplaces. It has a huge, luxurious bath tub and a place for everything. (Update, I totally manifested this house last year).
How to create a tailored self-care routine
Come up with a routine that is personally tailored to you. Even if you don't currently have one, here are some ideas and questions to ask yourself when creating your self-care routine:
What drains you? For me, bright lighting, loud sounds, clutter, and outings drain me. Start eliminating or reducing things that drain you from your daily schedule.
What re-sets you? Listening to music, going for a walk, reading a good book, cooking; what de-stresses you? See where you can begin incorporating these things into your days and weeks.
What negative habits or thoughts are holding you back? Looking at your phone too much, focusing on the negatives, talking bad about yourself, believing self-care is selfish; what do you want to discard and let go?
How could you make the most out of your mornings and evenings? When you're getting ready for the morning or for bed, you could listen to something that boosts your mindset, or you could do a morning worksheet (I've got a nighttime one too with this bundle), journal, stretch, read a page from an inspiring book, etc.
Most people feel like they don't have time for self-care, but it's really these small pockets of time throughout the day where we're able to add in little things that make the biggest difference in our moods and lives.
If you'd like to know my routines, check out my morning self-care routine and my nightly self-care routine. I also made a free 2-page printable for you to help you get your thoughts out onto paper and start creating your own self-care routine for the year.
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Lots of love,
Jessica Dimas is the author of Manifesting Magic with the Moon, a self-care guide and worksheet bundle for spiritual self-care. Connect with her on Facebook and Instagram for more inspiration and updates.