Y’all February has been a MONTH and it is only two weeks in.
By this point, the feeling of excitement that comes with the holidays and the New Year has worn away and the pressures of real life have set in and started to chip away at my resolve. While I’m still working towards my goals, I’d be lying if I failed to mention that I’ve been feeling burned out. With all my goal setting, I’ve been neglecting something essential: Me-Time.
But because I love myself and because I don’t want to be part of the 80% of people who abandon their resolutions by February, I’ve been working hard to take time for myself. For me, self-care means establishing consistent morning and evening routines and taking time for myself whenever I need it. Please keep reading for tangible tips for how I take care of myself and avoid burnout.
Self Care Tip #1: Establish a Meaningful Morning Routine
Spend Time In Prayer | Starting my morning out with prayer is an essential portion of my day. Having this quiet time with the Lord is an essential part of my day because it helps me in setting my intentions. Also, this is what gives me the strength and the patience to get through my day and to show love to others even when I don’t feel like it.
Run Through My To-Do List | I love to-do lists because of the way they provide me with a concrete log of the items on my plate. Also, is there anything more satisfying than crossing an item off of your to-do list?
Working out is one way I show my body love.
Sweat It Out | Morning gym time is essential for me. Not only does this give me a killer energy boost, but it working out gives acts as a major tool for dealing with stress. As someone who has struggled with anxiety, sweating out some of the physical manifestations of my stress is a vital tool for keeping me feeling healthy and happy.
Pro-Tip: Pack your gym bag with your workout essentials the night before. Not only does this save time in the morning, but it ensures that you won’t forget anything.
Get Glammed Up | My morning beauty routine is key to how I show myself some love because this is a time that I’m able to spend fully focused on myself. Whether my morning routine is just applying my skin care or whether I’m doing a full face of glam, I feel so free when I am working through my beauty routine. I feel empowered and ready to take on my day.
Self Care Tip #2: Wind Down in the Evenings with a Bedtime Routine
Wash Away the Day | I love being able to wash away the day’s stresses with a hot shower in the evening. Who doesn’t love the feeling that comes with freshly washed hair? Beyond that, the warm water is relaxing and calms me down.
Treat Yourself | Just as my morning beauty routine is an essential part of my day, my evening beauty routine is a major way I show myself, love. My nighttime routine is full of pampering. I treat my skin to face masks and other effective treatments that I use to maintain a youthful glow (even when I feel haggard AF on the inside). Don’t fret, I show my body some love too, by applying rich moisturizers.
Write It Out | As an introspective person, journaling is a must for processing my feelings. During this time, I’m able to think back on my day and work through my emotions. I set goals. I write down reasons to be thankful for my day.
Pro Tip: If you’re new to journaling, start slowly with bulleted lists or journals with prompts. During some of my darkest times, my nighttime journalling consisted of writing a list of 5-10 reasons to be grateful for the day.
A Few Books on the 2019 TBR List
Read | I love reading. Regardless of the genre, books offer me a chance to escape my day and learn new things about the experiences of others and about myself. In addition to reading books purely for fun, reading my Bible and Devotionals provide me with a chance to learn more about my faith and give me the strength to face my troubles.
Digital Detox | Did you know that the blue light emitted from our digital devices can contribute to restless sleep or difficulty sleeping? This is because the light emitted from our phones and laptops trick our body into thinking it is still daytime. As a result, we produce less melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep.
How do I digitally detox at night? First, I’ve updated the light setting on my phone so that my phone automatically shifts to a warm light setting in the evening. Second, I put my phone on airplane mode and charge it in a space far from where I sleep. Experts recommend going technology free at least 30 minutes prior to going to bed.
Self Care Tip #3: Don’t Be Afraid to Take a Break
If like me, you are a Type-A personality, then this can be a difficult concept to grasp. I don’t like admitting that I need to take a break or feeling like I’m failing to meet my obligations. I’ve learned the hard way that taking a break is not failing.
Sometimes, taking time for myself is more important than writing or promoting a blog post. Sometimes, taking time for myself is more important than plans with friends or work or school obligations. My well-being needs to come first.
It is okay to take a break. Your health and wellbeing should always come first. Instagram, blogging, etc. will still be there when you come back.
Over time, I’ve been able to rid myself of the guilt associated with taking breaks. Moreover, I felt comforted knowing that this was a sentiment that others believed, too.
Self Care Tip #4: Ask for Help or for Space as You Need It
Why is there so much shame associated with asking someone for help? Asking for help when it is needed is a major form of self-care. If I’m feeling overwhelmed, I need the supportof my friends and family. I need to feel that human connection when I’m going through tough times.
The above being said, sometimes I really need space to recharge and recalibrate with alone-time. During these times, it is essential for me to ask others to give me space. Thankfully, those closest to me understand this need and appreciate my honesty.