A Guide to Self-Care
Self-care is not selfish! According to the World Health Organization, self-care is “the ability of individuals, families and communities to promote health, prevent disease, maintain health, and to cope with illness and disability with or without the support of a healthcare provider.” Basically, what we do to care for ourselves outside of visiting the doctor, dentist, therapist, etc. Not to mention, Saturday July 24, 2021 is the International Day of Self-Care, so it's a great time of year to get started or improve your self-care routine!
Self-care is very personal and so gathering resources for this blog post was trickier than I anticipated. For me personally, the areas of self-care that I enjoy most are:
- Reading, watching movies, listening to audiobooks
- Showering (like, almost compulsively)
Making a self-care plan is really about finding what works best for your brain and body. If I'm being honest, I should probably amend my above list to also include eating chips and drinking cider but those are not necessarily healthy self-care choices.
For folks who are new to creating a self-care routine, I've included some titles below to help you get started on your journey. I've tried to find a cross-section of resources that may aid you in your new quest for self-care. I will not be recommending astrology, dosha, tarot or witchcraft, although those can be part of self-care too. Find out what works for you!
Starting Self-Care Resources
Wisdom From a Humble Jellyfish by Rani Shah
A fun illustrated guide that uses the habits of animals, like porcupines, and plants to promote self care. I liked the sunflower entry, to encourage us to simplify and slow down.
Unf*ck Your Body by Faith Harper
This book recommends using science and swears to help you feel better. Sign me up! Straight-talking therapist and nutritionist Dr. Faith Harper offers practical exercises to reconnect with physical needs and make small changes that help you feel better everyday. She has other great titles in the Unf#ck series including brain, intimacy and anger, all worth browsing!
The More or Less Definitive Guide to Self-Care by Anna Borges
A great starting place for newbies to self-care, easily broken down into four manageable pieces: physical, mental, social and spiritual. Cover your bases and check this one out.
Your Brain is Always Listening by Daniel G. Amen
A bestseller, this author uses "Thought Dragons," "Bad Habit Dragons," and "Addiction Dragons" (to name a few), to help you recognize harmful thought processes and gives you practical ways to vanquish them. A little bizarre but entertaining too!
Take Care of Yourself by James F. Fries and Donald M. Vickery
Since I mentioned earlier about how self-care usually operates outside of the general healthcare system, this is a great book for figuring out when you can treat yourself and when you should go see a professional. For us folks who love organization, these charts are your best starting point.
What are your favourite self-care tips and techniques?
For my fellow self-care doers, please share in the comments below!