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During this time of year, there’s lots of talk about love, with a big emphasis on romantic relationships.

However, as wonderful as it can be to celebrate the love in your life, there’s one relationship that’s important not to overlook. The relationship you have with yourself.

We understand that it can be easy to put others needs before your own, and hard to put yourself first. We wanted to take this time to remind you about self-care and finding the time to look after yourself.

When you hear “self-care” you may think of pampering, pedicures, bubble baths and facemasks. This is a common misconception, there’s so much more to finding a self-care routine that works for you.

Self-care is any activity that we do deliberately to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health. In other words: what do you need to do in order to take care of yourself? Self-care will look different for each person.

Here at MoreLife, we love helping people make healthy lifestyle changes. We want to help you find a self-care routine that works for you. Where should you start?

Alarm clock on bedside table

Finding the Time

We often hear from our clients that they don’t have enough time in the day to practise self-care. We understand life can be incredibly hectic. If only you could have more hours in the day, right? We’d love to tell you about our clock exercise. Draw a circle and divide into 24 segments. You can then fill it with everything you do in a day.

You should be able to see how you’re using time. This clock exercise can help you be realistic with how much spare time you have in your day. Or make you more aware of ways you can change your routine. For instance, how long do you spend sitting down? Could you find times to get more movement into your day? This is your routine, so ask yourself what changes you’d like to make that could improve your wellbeing.

Get Out & About

Physical activity can be a great thing to make part of your self-care routine. It doesn’t have to be a gym class or going for a run. It could be dancing in the kitchen or going for a short stroll. Finding the motivation to get moving can be tough, particularly when the weather is miserable.

However, there are so many benefits to going outdoors. Green spaces – where there’s grass, trees and plants – have been shown to reduce stress and improve our mood. Also, blue spaces – rivers, lakes, the sea – can also improve our wellbeing. Going for a short walk could make such a positive impact on your day.

SMART Goals

Here at MoreLife, we love setting SMART goals.

They are:
Specific
Measurable
Achievable
Realistic
Time-based

When you’re thinking of self-care habits, it’s unhelpful to create an unrealistic routine you won’t be able to stick to. For instance, rather than say “I’m going to go on a walk every single morning” change this to “I’m going to go on a 15-minute walk twice a week.” It’s all about creating habits you can stick to and that easily slot into your current routine.

What You Enjoy

What other activities could be good for your routine? Hobbies can be a great source of comfort, especially if you’re feeling low. You can find something that you really enjoy doing. From arts and crafts to writing and Zumba – there’s a whole world of activities you can explore. Whatever it is you end up doing, the most important thing is that you enjoy it. You’re giving yourself time to do something that makes you happy.

Be Mindful

When creating your self-care routine, it’s important to be mindful. We know that word gets used a lot these days, but what does it mean? Essentially, mindfulness is about being in the present moment.

Pay attention when you’re practising self-care. Are you truly enjoying what you’re doing? Take the time to appreciate the activities you’re doing for yourself. Try not to get distracted by the things you “should” be doing. Remember that giving yourself this time is important.

Being mindful takes time and practice. If you want to find out more, check out our mindfulness podcast.

At MoreLife, we love helping people make real, long-lasting, changes to their lifestyle. You can have a look at our services to see how we can help you. What would your self-care routine look like?

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