Self-Care Saturday: Build a Plan

I’ve been dropping ideas about self-care every weekend, but what about a plan?

Do you have a list of “go to” self-care practices? If not, what should you do to build one? To get started, you’ll want to understand the five types of self-care activities. These are:

  • physical
  • emotional
  • professional
  • mental
  • spiritual

You’ll need each of these at different times, of course. It’s great to have some of every category in mind. Then when you need self-care, you just pull something from the list.

The next thing to do is know yourself just well enough to know what works fast, and lasts.

Stepping away from work for a minute is fast, but you have to go back to it, and to whatever stress wound you up in the first place. Sometimes that quick break is enough, and sometimes you just end up feeling worse.

Deep breathing, reframing, trying to look at situations from a different angle, all take a little longer but have lasting effects.

So, what works and when does it help the most? Decide that and you’re ready to get your list on.

Keep in mind, “spiritual” doesn’t have to mean meditating, praying, or anything specific to a religion. There are plenty of people in the world who are agnostic and athiest who benefit from spiritual self-care. The key, if that is where you stand on religion, is to remember that there’s a quantifiable benefit to having some sort of worldview. Whether that leans toward a necessity to take care of the planet, all people being connected, or whatever speaks to you – it’s not important. What’s important is whether it speaks to you on a deep, personal level.

Think through what works for you. Keep your favorites in mind and also pick backups for the inevitable day those don’t work. When you have a list, you’ll be prepared for the tough times because you won’t have to think about what to do.

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