Ah, it’s finally the weekend. Time to kick back, relax, take a deep breath, and center yourself. Right? Easier said than done. Often, weekends are spent finishing chores that piled up during the week or taking the kiddo to soccer practice. It can be hard to find the time to take care of yourself, but weekends are a great time to do an activity that makes you feel good. So what exactly is self-care? Self-care is defined as doing something that nurtures, heals, and honors yourself. It is a time that you take for you—and only you. The options for self-care genuinely are endless. It can range from physical activities like surfing, dancing, or yoga to checking yourself into an actual day at the spa for massages and pampering. Or, they can be as simple as deciding to turn your phone off and watching your favorite TV show uninterrupted. Let’s take a look at a few self-care ideas that might feel good for you to do over the weekend. Keep in mind; these are all very personal, so switch them up and do what sounds good to you!
Take a Bath. Baths are not only cleansing to our body, they can be healing to our spirit as well. They can be an excellent combination of quiet, alone time, and comfort. First, soak up therapeutic medicine (Epsom) salts and other good-for-the-skin natural ingredients. We recommend a few drops of coconut oil along with your favorite essential oil. Lavender oil can be pretty lovely for the evenings. You can also pour in some apple cider vinegar to restore the proper pH to your skin. Finally, try adding some baking soda. This can be an effective way to pull toxins out of the body and help you feel relaxed, rejuvenated, and refreshed.
- Take a Walk, Without your Phone. It can be challenging for so many of us to disconnect, and we’ll listen to podcasts or talk on the phone during walk time. Instead of listening to your favorite pod or calling your mom, try to leave the phone at home and notice how more grounding and magical it can be outside with yourself. You’ll begin to see the small stuff, like leaves changing or frost on the ground, and the fresh air alone can do wonders for your mental health.
- Netflix & Chill. When you reach that Friday evening part of your week, it is the perfect time to unwind and just relax. Put on your comfiest loungewear, order your favorite takeaway meal, and put on the Netflix. There are hundreds of shows to choose from, so chances are you will find one that is perfect for helping you unwind. Try a documentary that explores the beautiful planet we live on. Or put on a chick flick that you have already seen a million times. The trick to the Netflix and Chill self-care routine is to have an effortless evening where you can be mindless.
- Write in your Journal. Writing in a journal is one of the best self-care practices. You only need to commit five to ten minutes of your day, and you will notice a world of difference psychologically. For example, start the day by writing three things you are grateful for. And end the day by writing down three emotions you are currently feeling. Doing this simple writing activity gives your brain a chance to process both the good and the bad so that you don’t feel overwhelmed. Also, writing down a to-do list for the next day can be an excellent chance to release anything that’s been circling in your brain so that when it’s time to unwind and prepare for sleep, you can fully relax.
- Plan a Date Night. Having something to look forward to is vital for our well-being. Part of what’s so fun about a vacation is the anticipation of relaxation or getting out of town. Try and make a habit of scheduling something that you will look forward to, even if it's just an ice cream date with yourself. Or an hour alone in the bath. Sometimes life can get away from us and quickly falls into a routine, but if you take the time to schedule things that are important to you, you'll see your life gradually fill up with fun.
Ultimately, self-care shouldn’t be a chore or feel like something else on the to-do list. “More self-care equals more self-awareness, which equals more self-love, which will ripple out onto others you interact with every day in the form of compassion, gratitude, and deeper kindness,” says Patel from Everdayhealth.com. “If you take the time for even just a few minutes of daily self-care, you will be able to show up to the world from a place of inner peace, and things will likely feel much easier.” That, she says, should be all the justification you need to get started as soon as you can. So hopefully, after reading this article, you’ll feel inspired to create some new self-care habits this weekend!