News • 20 Jul 2022

Self-care is more than just a buzzword

Self-care is more than just a buzzword

24 July marks the International Self-Care Day. But what does self-care mean?

It may have become a buzzword in recent years and confused with luxuries like spa days, but the reality is that self-care is activities and choices that preserve and maintain your physical, emotional and mental health.

Self-care does not need to be costly, extravagant or time consuming. It should be a series of choices and activities you make everyday to sustain a healthy lifestyle.

The International Self-Care Foundation describes self-care as the foundation of healthcare that generally falls outside of the formal health and social care systems.  

The basics of self-care include eating well, sleeping well, moving your body often, connecting socially and making time for the things that bring you joy.

Life gets busy and sometimes it can feel like there is no time to take care of yourself, but there are some easy ways to incorporate sustainable acts of self-care into your routine. For example, why not try:

  • On Sunday (or the equivalent of Sunday for your week), dedicate just one hour to some meal preparations. In this time, you can:
    • chop up some fruit and veggies to store in the fridge so you have healthy snacks ready to go through the week.
    • roast some veggies to toss through a salad or turn into a soup for some easy lunches.
    • cook one meal that is big enough to eat now and freeze the rest for later.
  • Call a friend and invite them to go for a walk with you. You will be taking care of your physical health and social connection all at the one time.
  • Set aside 15 minutes each day for a creative task that brings you joy, such as mandala colouring, listening to or creating music, or pay an art gallery or museum a virtual visit from the comfort of your own home.
  • Start going to bed 10 minutes earlier each night, and gradually work your way up to 30 minutes earlier. This will help your circadian rhythm fall into a healthy sleep pattern and gain an extra 210 minutes of sleep each week!

The 21/90 rule suggests it takes 21 days to form a habit, and if you can continue it for another 90 days, it should become a permanent lifestyle change.

So, on this International Self-Care Day, challenge yourself to commit to just one act of self-care for the next 21 days. If you feel it is making a positive difference, extend that commitment to another 90 days. You will be on track to making healthier decisions in no time!