7 Ways To Sneak Self-Care into Your Schedule
Published on: November 15, 2019
Looking after one’s own self and prioritizing yourself has nothing to do with being selfish. Looking and feeling good actually benefits you in the long run while you take care of others. Here are seven ways to look after yourself in a world that is getting more chaotic by the hour.
By Ankita Sodhia
I never gave much thought to “self-care” — the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health and well being — until my time wasn’t my own anymore.
Becoming a mom completely changed my perspective and attitude toward self-care. When I was working full-time, I did the bare minimum for my self-care and kept using the same products and doing the same daily routines without giving any deeper thought to consider was any of it actually working for me?
It’s a promise to show up for yourself in a meaningful and intentional way every single day.
Let me tell you: when I was chained to my pumping machine four to five times a day during maternity leave, it gave me a lot of time to reflect on my attitude towards my own well being. I realized I did so many things (gym, skincare, diet, etc) in the name of self-care because I felt I had to and not necessarily because I understood or enjoyed whatever I was doing.
Whether I saw or experienced any kind of gains was irrelevant because in my mind it was another thing I checked off my to-do list and that was enough.
But it’s not.
Self-care goes beyond “Netflix and masking” or going to the gym every day — it’s being proactive and cognizant of actions that result in feeling good from the inside and being sure to repeat those actions every day with the same effort and enthusiasm. It’s a promise to show up for yourself in a meaningful and intentional way every single day.
It’s taken me a little while to get my self-care routine figured out but along the way, I discovered some easy ways to work self-care into the busiest of schedules and actually see meaningful results in different aspects of my life.
1. Workout with YouTube fitness channels for shorter and more targeted routines
I discovered PopSugar Fitness and Fitness Blender channels on YouTube and I haven’t looked back. Both channels offer a wide variety of workouts with different range and you can choose whichever suits you best. Depending on fitness level, time availability, personal needs, and even your mood.
Each night I scroll through the channels and decide what workout I want to do the following morning. The best part: I’m seeing more results than I did by going to the gym for hour-long workouts that I never looked forward to and I’m always in a great mood for the rest of the day.
2. Set the alarm clock for 30 to 45 minutes before the rest of the house wakes up and/or the day starts
This is not new advice I’m sharing. It’s advice I finally gave in to after years of claiming to not be a “morning person”. But it’s made a big difference in being helping carve out some me-time. There’s something so peaceful about a quiet house that helps me focus on the day ahead without feeling stressed or pressured.
3. Netflix and self-care
Why not invest in some self-care while watching Netflix? My skin has seen incredible benefits from masking regularly — it’s clearer and more radiant. Alternatively, I cut and file my nails or leave on a hair mask or a foot mask while watching Netflix. Rotating care for different parts of the body so I don’t waste extra time doing it.
4. Use shower time for body and foot scrubs
Not every day but at least once a week or if you get time then twice a week, hit the shower for a few extra minutes and benefit from scrubs. It’s super cheap and easy to do it in the comfort of your home. You’ll feel smooth and revitalized after a shower.
5. Include tidying up as part of a bedtime routine
This one is definitely a strange one to add because tidying up after a long day just seems like work — not self-care. So my daily bedtime routine begins with 10-15 minutes (honestly that’s all the time it takes!) of tidying up any clutter, putting things back from where they came from, clearing out bills and organizing my handbags.
And when I’m done my mind is instantly clear and relaxed and ready to take on a new day clutter-free!
6. Use traffic, long commutes or even kids’ nap times to listen to a podcast and/or catch up with family or friends
This one has been in my daily routine for years. If I’m driving, I’ll plug my phone into my car and play a podcast. The time seems to go by faster and maybe I learn something new. If I’m on the train, I like to catch up via text with family or friends I haven’t spoken to in a while and it’s an immediate mood booster.
7. Stop endlessly and aimlessly scrolling on social media. Instead follow positive, uplifting accounts and influencers, and engage with intent
I may sound like a hypocrite because I spend a lot of time on social media every day. Spend time wisely on the phone and social media so that you grow your mind rather than filling it with mindless scrolling.
I choose to follow accounts and bloggers who I feel uplifted and motivated by in my areas of interest — fitness, female entrepreneurs, parenting, beauty and skincare and travel. That way I learn something new every day. Use social media to have a powerful positive impact on your life.
I hope you find the list of self-care hacks above useful. It’s not really about investing more time for taking care of yourself; it’s about shifting your mindset and how you spend the few “free” minutes or hours you have each day to better your own well-being and happiness.
About the Author
Ankita is a digital marketing consultant, lifestyle blogger, and expat mom based in Bangkok. After almost a decade in corporate marketing, Ankita launched her boutique digital marketing consultancy for the hospitality industry in 2018. As a side hustle, Ankita runs a lifestyle blog, focused on expat life with kids in Bangkok. Ankita grew up in Bangkok and now lives here with her husband, son, and dog.
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