Daily Dose of Self Care
As winter stretches on and classes pile on the homework, it can be easy to fall back into bad habits and to lose focus. Especially nearing mid-term exam season, it's important to remember to take care of yourself and to surround yourself with positive vibes.
During my freshman year, I took a wellbeing class offered by my university which taught me so much about self-care. One of the most important lessons I learned was to set time each day to do something special for yourself. Whether it be a yoga sesh, a splurge on your favorite DoorDash order, or a picnic date with friends – plan on doing something good for you. Because, well, you deserve it!
Therapeutic Lifestyle Change
According to the American Psychology Institute, a plethora of mental health conditions including anxiety and depression can be treated or ameliorated with “therapeutic lifestyle changes”. These changes can be made by focusing more on exercise, nutrition, relationships, recreation, relaxation, and stress management, religious or spiritual involvement, spending time in nature, and service to others. Pairing this information with what I learned in my class, I decided to put this advice into practice over the course of a school week. Here are the results:
Take My Time
On Monday, I don’t have any in-person classes, so I usually spend the day at home. It gives me time to knock out most of my homework for the week and that helps me to stress less about missing due dates. Given the time I saved by not commuting to campus, I decided to make a healthy dinner for myself and for my family. I made pan roasted salmon and root vegetables which is super easy if you’re like me and can’t cook!
Get Some Sun and Fresh Air
On Tuesday, I headed over to my favorite cafe on campus to get acai bowls with two of my friends. Since it was a nice day, we walked around campus instead of staying inside. It was a great opportunity to get some Vitamin D and to relax.
Still Make Time for Care During Busy Days
By Wednesday, I’m already waiting for it to be Friday. Since it’s my busiest day of the week as well, I settled for doing a 15 min yoga routine that I found on YouTube. It was easy and effective, and a great way to fix my posture after sitting in class all day.
Work With the Weather
It was raining on Thursday which meant it was the perfect day for a movie night! My sister and I rented Bullet Train to watch and found a bag of leftover Halloween candy – eating all of the Reese’s was definitely worth it.
Finally, after a full week of school and work, Friday came along. I had evening plans, but my morning was wide open, so I chose to head to my local gym then to go on a Target and Trader Joe’s run. I did end up buying more snacks than needed and a pretty pricey face mask, but I felt great anyways. After all, a little splurge once in a while is good for the soul.
Overall, I thought my week-long experiment of adding a self-care activity everyday was super fun and beneficial. I planned accordingly to make sure everything would be doable, and I felt good about being good to myself. I wholeheartedly recommend modifying this plan to fit your own interests and schedule, as a daily dose of TLC sure goes a long way!
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