“To experience peace does not mean that your life is always blissful. It means that you are capable of tapping into a blissful state of mind amidst the normal chaos of a hectic life,” explained Jill Bolte Taylor.
This sounds great in theory, but how do we actually do it?
The answer is different for everyone. Here are 35 of my favorite ways to engage in self-care:
1. Go for a hike. Spend the whole day outdoors absorbing the wonder of nature.
2. Throw yourself a private dance party. Break for snacks.
3. Start a gratitude journal. Write in it every day.
4. Reconnect with your creative side. Paint, write, draw, bake, decorate – do something that awakens your senses.
5. Quit something that is bad for you – smoking, drinking, complaining, judging others. See how it feels after two weeks.
6. Buy yourself flowers. If you’re feeling ambitious, plant some in your yard – or on a windowsill – as well.
7. Snuggle with your own dog (or cat, I guess), or borrow one from a friend.
8. Write a thank you note to someone who is important to you.
9. Take the time to really stretch in between conference calls.
10. Run away for the weekend to a town you’ve never been to.
11. Buy an adult coloring book and lose yourself in the pages.
12. Engage in a practice you find to be spiritual. This can be church, camping, yoga, or something entirely different.
13. Create a vision board.
14. Do something kind for a person you care about. Don’t tell them it was you who did it, and share in their joy when they find out.
15. By cheap nail polish and a face mask. Give yourself an at-home spa day.
16. Take the time to cook yourself a meal that you loved as a child.
17. Go to the library and ask the librarian for recommendations. Take home at least two books.
18. Find an exercise class that you love, and throw yourself into it completely. Lose track of time. Work up a sweat. Most importantly, get out of your head and into your body.
19. Book yourself a night away in a hotel. Order room service.
20. Call your parents.
21. Warm your pajamas in the dryer before putting them on.
22. Wander around a museum that interests you.
23. Book yourself a massage, body wrap, or acupuncture session.
24. Go for a walk at sunrise or sunset.
25. Engage in a digital detox – no phone, television, or computer – for a whole day.
26. Jump on the bed.
27. Take fifteen minutes to meditate.
28. Identify a room in your home that you don’t love spending time in. Paint it your favorite color.
29. Eat dessert. Don’t find out the nutrition information before doing so.
30. Take a nap during the daytime. Reject any sense of guilt over this.
31. Take a bubble bath with candles and soothing music.
32. Write a love letter to yourself.
33. Watch your favorite movie. Turn off your phone while you do this. Accept no interruptions.
34. Organize a room, closet, or junk drawer that makes you feel stressed out.
35. Set aside an entire day to complete projects you’ve been procrastinating. Reward yourself with ice cream.
“Nourishing yourself in a way that helps you blossom in the direction you want to go is attainable, and you are worth the effort,” wrote Deborah Day.
What have you done for yourself lately?