Self care things you can do to boost your wellbeing
Paths for All's CEO Kevin Lafferty shares some top tips on looking after your wellbeing, and why self care is essential for us to stay happy and healthy.
What is self-care and why does it matter? Self-care includes all the things you do to take care of your well-being in key areas – your physical, emotional and psychological health.
Self-care is essential for managing stress, preventing burnout, and mitigating compassion fatigue – all common occupational hazards for caring individuals. Self-care is also important for a sense of overall integrity, as it ensures we “practice what we preach” and look after ourselves.
Ask yourself this question? - what are you currently doing for your emotional and physical self-care? Are you looking after yourself properly or always running around after other people? Are you making enough time for physical activity and exercise?
Looking after (the body) - this involves ensuring an overall healthy lifestyle that includes eating healthy, drinking lots of water, and getting plenty of exercise. Managing caffeine and alcohol consumption. Take time away from chairs, computers, TV, and your smartphone to rest and replenish. Hopefully you are trying to get 30 minutes exercise most days of the week. Why not try something new like the ‘Step Count Challenge’ to boost your physical activity levels. This way you are actively engaging with life and giving yourself a chance to relax and unwind.
Looking after (the heart) – to love, care, and be in relationship with yourself and others. Engage emotional boundaries within helping relationships, surrounding yourself with positive people and affirmative people who want the best for you. Try and address any issues or problems so that they don’t build up. Spend time with people you care about and who care about you. Try to minimize and avoid damaging relationships that cause you harm!
Looking after (the mind) – positive psychology this includes getting control over bad emotions - anxiety, depression and panic etc., and looking at ways to boost good emotions including happiness, gratitude and acceptance. This gives you resilience to cope better during bad times. When we thrive, we tend to feel good about our lives – more optimistic, happier and more in control. We feel more able to make changes in our life and do things that help protect us from stress and boosts our health.
Connect (with people) – ‘belonging’ is crucial to wellbeing. Getting support from others helps us over the hard times. Giving support helps us feel that we are decent, worthwhile people. Feeling connected gives us a sense that we are part of something bigger and this helps boost wellbeing. Make time for the people around you. Your family, friends, neighbours and workmates. Work hard to make and then keep these relationships strong.
Remember self-care really matters! it should be fun, guilt-free, enjoyable, and nourishing.You know what is best for you – give yourself permission to take time to fill your own cup so that you can make a difference from a place of vitality, well-being, and health. Your self-care benefits you and others too – it’s a win-win!So why not start today with a daily walk to look after your body, heart and mind!