Aah, self-care, my favorite topic! Whether you’re a newbie to loving and taking care of yourself or you’ve been the queen of self-care for a while, taking the first step on this journey can be a difficult one. ‘What does self-care look like?’ you cry, and fair enough.
This isn’t always an easy question to answer; if it was, we’d all be out there going from 0 to loving the hell out of ourselves after a half hour yoga session. Alas, building up a positive relationship with yourself is a little bit harder than that, but here’s how you can get started.
Boundaries, boundaries, boundaries. Little do we realize that there are so many of us that don’t have them, which is super damaging to our relationships with ourselves and others. Think about what you want from people, and what you’re going to accept. Create these boundaries and stick to them at all times. If people can’t respect them, then they aren’t worthy of your time or attention. Harsh, yes, but vital!
Spending time alone
Never spending any time alone is a bit of a red flag where self-care is concerned, because it gives you little opportunity to find out who you are and what you really want and need.
If you never get that breathing space, then you risk becoming a culmination of all of the things that people want you to be instead of making these decisions for yourself. Even an hour with a book is great for your self-care, and taking yourself for dinner is even better.
Looking good for you
In this toxic culture that old-fashioned patriarchal ideas created and social media perpetuates, you can find that you’re trying to look a certain way because you’re supposed to, or because men (or women) will find you attractive if you do.
Though it’s hard to unlearn, try to ditch ideas about looking good for somebody else. Think about what the real you wants, and dress up for her. This is great news for self-love and care.
Though buying yourself stuff isn’t exclusively the answer when it comes to self-care, few of us would dispute the fact that you get that buzz when you walk out of a store with something that you’ve wanted for a long time.
You deserve a treat, and if you usually buy gifts for people that you love, then why not invest in them for number one? Whether you use a MacBook Apple student discount or simply buy yourself some cookies, do it!
Defining your own self-care
OK, so we have been dishing out the self-care advice here. However, the truth is that self-care does look different for everybody, and realizing this is the key to living a happier life, full of love for yourself.
Some people feel better after heading out for a walk in nature, and others feel better after lying in bed all day eating junk food and not changing out of their pyjamas. As long as it works for you, that’s all that matters!