Self-care is something that a lot of people struggle with. It’s no secret that we all go through trials that make us have to look inside and figure out who we are and what we want to be. I feel as though it is our obligation to ourselves that we figure out who we are and sometimes that takes a bit of time. And that’s okay. One of the most important things about self-care is taking the time out for yourself, no matter how long you need, to figure out what’s best for you. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks, you need to figure out who you are and what you like.
That being said, self-care to me is essentially slowing down and taking a deep breath. I unintentionally get wrapped up in college, friend problems, and sometimes my own head. It’s easy to spiral into a big ball of stress, but it’s not exactly easy to find a way out of it.
My way of getting out is typically stopping for a second and acknowledging that I am starting to stress. If it’s something I can take a break from, I usually back away from it. If I’m in my dorm, I tend to take a shower because the hot water feels really nice and helps relax my muscles if I’m tense. Sometimes I massage my hair with a nice smelling product that begins to put me in a better mood than I was in. From there, I usually do a face mask (which has become an everyday routine now) plug my headphones into my phone and do meditation.
People have different ideas of meditation, it could be listening to your favorite album or listening to the sounds of waves crashing on the shore (my personal favorite). Depending on how I am feeling, I sometimes use different meditation apps, such as Simple Habit, Headspace, or Calm. I’ve found that they are really useful in calming me down and centering myself. If somehow none of this works, I go for a walk and listen to music on the lowest setting. Sometimes being alone with your thoughts is the best way to work through trying to fix a problem, which will then lower your stress levels.
Stress is a very real thing and has been normalized in this day and age. The best way to combat it is self-care. We need to make sure that we are healthy both physically and mentally. Just because your body is in good shape, doesn’t mean your mind is. Being healthy mentally and physically is the key to self-care.
Read more self-care tips from Courtney on her blog.
Written by Courtney Smith