If you’re reading this, you’re probably ready to make a few changes to your lifestyle — good ones! To upgrade your self-care routine, it’s important to take baby steps to make sure you follow through. Even five minutes of alone time can count as self-care! Here’s exactly how to make it work.
“Self-care” is pretty self-explanatory, but there’s often a misconception around what it should look like. Self-care doesn’t have to be an expensive spa trip you only take once a year or eating perfectly 100% of the time. It’s actually the opposite! Self-care includes the small, healthy choices that you make for yourself, such as getting an extra hour of sleep, nourishing your body with fruits and veggies, and even doing a light stretch.
At the end of the day, anything you do that contributes to your wellbeing is self-care, no matter how big or small. The key? Simply having the intention to care for yourself.
Why Self-Care is Important
Self-care is often the last of our priorities, and it makes sense with our busy lives. But, it’s important to remember that if we want to live a healthy, fulfilled life, we have to take care of ourselves, too.
Setting aside five minutes of self-care is an AMAZING way to get out of the self-sacrifice cycle we easily find ourselves in. For instance, we get so used to putting our work, relationships, and other responsibilities ahead of our needs, that we start to feel neglected. And our bodies reflect that! Maybe you’ve been getting headaches more often, really struggle with anxiety, or haven’t been sleeping well. These are all signs it’s time to upgrade your self-care routine.
12 Simple Upgrades to Make to Your Self-Care Routine
Okay, but what kind of upgrades are we talking about here? As always, it’s way better to start small. This way it’s easier to maintain and follow through. Here are some great, sustainable ideas for amping up your self-care habits!
#1 Add a Sleep Meditation to Your Evening Routine
Struggling to wind down before bed? Try a sleep meditation! It’s a wonderful way to soothe your body into a relaxing sleep. Try this FitOn meditation — Deepest Sleep Ever with DeAndre. Cheers to deep, restful snoozes.
#2 Add Some Lemon to Your Morning Glass of Water
Lemon is a great aid in helping your liver naturally detoxify. So why not start your day this way? Squeeze half a lemon into your morning cup of water. Oh, hello, clearer skin!
#3 Start Stretching After Your Workouts
Stretching is so important to maintaining proper muscle functioning. Plus, it’s a great stress-reliever. Once you’re done with your workouts, start implementing a simple stretch routine. It doubles as a cool down, too! Try this cool down stretch with Kenta or this mobility class with Dr. Jen Fraboni.
#4 Practice Mindfulness On Your Daily Walks
It’s so easy to let your mind race while you walk. There are just so many things going on! But, to really reap the benefits of your movement, practice mindfulness as you take your strides. Focus on the feeling of each foot hitting the ground, the sound of the birds, the feeling of the breeze sweeping across your face, and how the sunshine soaks into your skin. We’re feeling better already!
#5 Invest In Ergonomic Equipment For Your Desk
Believe it or not, humans aren’t meant to sit all day long. And unfortunately, most of us in the modern world sit down at our desks eight plus hours a day. And while we might not be able to avoid sitting completely, we can invest in an ergonomic chair, laptop stand, and mouse to give our bodies a better chance of adjusting.
RELATED: 9 Life-Changing Hacks if Your Desk Job Has You Sitting All Day
#6 Start Taking a Probiotic
Hippocrates believed that all disease begins in the gut. It’s often thought of as one of the powerhouses of the body, as it stores billions of bacteria that help our body function properly. So why not give your gut some love? Consider taking a probiotic each day to promote better digestion, immunity, sleep, and energy, or up your intake of probiotic-rich foods like unsweetened yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, and kombucha. Note, it’s always a good idea to speak with your doctor first about questions or concerns you have prior to starting a new supplement.
#7 Add Some Greens to Every Meal
We could all use some more micronutrients! Make a little effort to add some sort of green vegetable to each meal, whether it’s spinach in your smoothie, some broccoli with your turkey burger, or green beans to go with your salmon.
#8 Add Sunscreen to Your Skin Routine
The skin is the largest organ in your body, which is why it’s extra important to keep it healthy. Start putting on sunscreen along with all of your other products. Such a simple way to protect your body from damaging UV rays!
#9 Dedicate a Day Each Month To Do Nothing
These days when people ask how we’re doing, most of us respond with, “Oh, you know, busy. A little stressed. There’s just a lot going on.” It’s become normal in our society to go, go, go without breaks. But, this isn’t how our bodies like to function.
We need proper rest to keep that momentum up. So, take this to the next level by dedicating one day each month that’s free from commitments. It’s YOUR day to do what you want!
#10 Buy Yourself Flowers When You Grocery Shop
Upgrading your self-care routine can be all about the little stuff you do for yourself. For example, even if it’s just spotting your favorite flower at the store and purchasing it. Something just for you.
#11 Go Technology-Free An Hour Before Bed
We all know by now that blue light from our technological devices can mess with our sleep. They essentially block melatonin receptors. But, it’s more than that. Scrolling social media before bed often invokes negative emotions, like FOMO, anxiety, and jealousy.
Not good emotions to experience if you’re trying to sleep. Simply remove all of your devices before bed, so you can stay calm and relaxed.
#12 Upgrade Your Hair Care & Skin Products
Next time you need to buy a new bottle of shampoo or conditioner, consider upgrading your hair or skincare products. Treat yourself to something new or something you’ve had your eye on for a while.
The Weekender Kit from Hers is the ultimate hair care upgrade. You’ll get a Detox Scalp Scrub and a Rapid Repair Hair Mask — pretty much everything you need to take your hair care routine up a notch. These hair products are also free of parabens, phthalates, and sulfates. Oh, and did we mention that this duo is developed by the iconic JLo?
It’s the ultimate self-care upgrade, and the combo of these two products will leave your hair looking and feeling like you just left the salon.
Self-Care Isn’t Optional — It’s Essential to Wellbeing
Self-care doesn’t have to be complicated. The more complicated we make it, or the more we think it needs to be elaborate, the less likely we are to do it. Instead, just remind yourself any little bit counts, even if it’s just five minutes of quiet time in the morning. You got this! And enjoy upgrading your self-care routine.