Being sleep deprived, overwhelmed, overworked, and stressed-out is no joke!
Besides risking physical illness and emotional burnout, a lack of self-care can render you less efficient, more prone to mistakes, susceptible to brain fog and a decreased attention span, and your decision-making capacity greatly reduced—all of which only increase stress.
It can feel like being on a hamster wheel. Here are 5 self-care tips for stress relief to help you break that cycle, and experience more peace and relaxation in your daily life.
1 - Stop Thinking You Don't Have Time For Self-Care
The #1 reason given for skipping self-care is not having enough time.
Taking time for yourself to relax, and recharge is not a luxury—it's essential to your wellbeing physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
Aside from keeping you well, self-care enables you to refocus and get clear.
Your behavior is influenced by what you value, and you values are based on your beliefs.
If you aren't prioritizing self-care, it's because you have others values that are taking priority.
Give yourself permission to make YOU a priority, and you'll discover this truth:
There is always time for what you value the most.
When you plan your week, schedule in specific times to mindfully reconnect with yourself each day.
Try a 5-10 minute meditation in the mornings (or before bed), an exfoliating self-massage in the shower with a body scrub, self-massage while you moisturize with body oil just after a shower, savor the flavor in every bite when you eat...the list is endless.
Self-care doesn't have take a lot of time and effort. Dedicating small acts of service to yourself using mindfulness will go a long way.
2 - Plan Ahead & Keep It Simple
Set aside a few hours one day each week to create a meal plan for yourself, pick out what you're wearing each day, and think of which hairstyle you'll be rocking.
The idea is to decrease the number of miniature decisions you'll have to make each morning when you roll out of bed.
It's much easier to enjoy the moment when you don't have to rush, while continuously plotting out each next step.
When your day begins with ease and gratitude, you'll naturally be more relaxed throughout the course of the day.
3 - Shorten Your To-Do List
It's easy to end up with a long to-do list that isn't very productive if you're not careful.
Crossing off a bunch of small things can feel satisfying in the moment, but often causes you to delay the big projects that require more energy.
Do you have too many irons in the fire?
Limit your daily to-do list to the 3 most important tasks ranked by their importance. If you knock out all 3, and have time left over (aside from your me time), then feel free to take on 1-2 small things.
4 - Ask For Help & Delegate The Small Stuff
The more time you spend doing small, repetitive things—the less time you have for the things that really matter to you.
Let's take a look at your to-do list:
Do YOU really have to be the one to do it all?
What can you automate or delegate to someone else?
Cooking, cleaning, lawn care, childcare, laundry, phone calls to suppliers, meal planning, small errands, social media posting, etc...
If you enlisted help of friends, or hired an assistant for just a few hours per week, how much time could you get back to use for the things and people that add the most value to your life?
This is a huge stress-management strategy for self-care.
5 - Yoga Breathing
Stress is inevitable, but managing it is an easy skill to develop. The greatest stress management tool you have at your disposal is your breath.
Alternate nostril breathing is an ancient pranayama (yoga breathing) technique that can be used on the go for a quick reset.
Use it anytime to reduce anxiety, restore hormonal balance, relieve stress, increase energy, improve focus and clarity, promote better sleep, quiet the mind, and quickly balance emotions.
Use your right thumb to close off your right nostril.
Inhale slowly and deeply through your left nostril.
Use your right ring finger to close off your left nostril.
Release your thumb and exhale gently through the right nostril.
Inhale slowly and deeply though the right nostril.
Use your thumb to close off the right nostril.
Release your ring finger, and gently exhale through the left nostril.
I hope you'll give these stress relief tips a try so that you can have more time for self-care!
What are some things you do to reduce stress? Please share in the comments below!