We live in a busy world. There's work, friends, hobbies, kids and more to squeeze into our days. Life isn't always a field of flowers. This busy lifestyle means that many of us don't practice basic self-care on a daily basis. That's too bad.
At BeHerbal, we know that your life doesn't always allow you to devote endless hours to self-care. That's why we've gathered some of the quickest ways to look after yourself. Even if you only have a few minutes to dedicate to you, we have ideas you can try.
What is self-care?
An important thing to think about is what self-care really means. Many of us might think of weekly massages or long, luxurious bubble baths. But the majority of people are too time-poor to do these things regularly! However, you can still practice self-care.
Self-care is about putting yourself and your needs before everything else. It can include eating healthy food, moving your body, nurturing your mental health and more. In fact, even going out for a coffee with a friend can count. If it makes you feel good, it counts.
Why self-care is essential
So why is it important to invest a little time into yourself? It might seem indulgent, but it's actually the opposite. Experts around the world agree that self-care is not selfish. In fact, it might even help you to be a better person.
Self-care of the body, mind and soul can help you to be:
- More productive at work
- Less distracted
- A better parent, family member and friend
- More present and able to enjoy life
- Less stressed and overwhelmed
- Calmer and able to handle stressful situations
That's a lot of good reasons to invest some time. Even only small chunks of time can make a big difference.
Quick & Easy Self-Care
You don't have the time to spend hours at the gym or meditating your stresses away. But that's ok – we have the quick ways to keep you well-cared for right here.
If you want your body and brain to function at optimal levels, hydration is one of the key things to think about. It's also one of the quickest ways to look after yourself.
If you forget to drink water, you have a few options that take very little time. That might include:
- Getting an app that reminds you to take a drink every hour
- Buying a water bottle that gives you goals to drink each hour
- Setting a reminder on your computer
If you have a little more time on your hands, drinking herbal tea is a great option for hydration. It not only supplies your body with water, but also with antioxidants and health benefits.
It's no secret that we love our healthy snack options! But if you don't have time to prepare fancy snacks, you don't have to resort to the vending machine. There are plenty of healthy snacks that have little or no prep time.
- Fresh or frozen berries
- Raw nuts
- Raw seeds
- Nut/seed butter and celery
- Nut/seed butter and apple
- Vegetable sticks with dip
- Tinned tuna or salmon
- Dark chocolate (70% cocoa minimum)
If you have a little more prep time, try making yourself some energy balls with healthy ingredients. Most energy balls can be stored in the freezer, so you can have them on hand when you've got a big day to get through.
Exercise is so essential for our bodies, but it can take up hours every day! The good news is, you can still benefit from exercise even if it's only a few minutes. In fact, sometimes fast workouts can be even more effective than longer sessions.
The key here is to make your exercise very intense, following the principles of high-intensity interval training (HIIT). HIIT is all about working intensely for a set period, then easing up for a set period. This allows you to work hard over a short period.
You can apply this to both cardio and strength workouts. For cardio, you might alternate sprints and walking, or jump rope at varying speeds. For strength, you can do some body-weight exercises like squats, pushups and lunges with only a 15 second break in between each exercise.
We're going to let you in on a secret: meditation doesn't have to last for hours. In fact, you can meditate for just a few minutes if that's all you have.
Meditation is a great way to reset your brain and reduce stress levels. So when you feel overwhelm and anxiety build up, take a few minutes out.
Try these easy mindfulness exercises:
- Spend 3 minutes focused on your breath, making each breath deeper and longer
- Take 10 deep breaths, focused on the feeling in your body
- Spend 5 minutes focusing on your senses – 1 minute each for smell, hearing, touch, taste and sight
- Spend 2 minutes thinking about all of the things you are grateful for in your life
The best part is, you can do a few of each over the day, which can add up quickly.
Do you find your stresses tipping over into your break times? Break times need to be good for your mind, not just your body. So look for a way to make your breaks feel really good.
There are different options here. You might take a walk in a local park and pat a puppy dog or two. You could watch some funny videos on YouTube. If you can, spend some time with a loved one. Look for things that give you a rush of feel-good hormones.
When you get home, try to finish the day on a high by cuddling someone. Whether it's your pet, your kids or your partner, it will give you a dose of oxytocin. This can help to reduce stress levels and leave work worries behind for the evening.
By adding these quick and simple tricks into your daily routine, you'll be able to tick self-care off the to-do list. So reap the benefits – you might even find it helps you to free up more time throughout your day.
What's your favorite way to practice self-care? Share with us below.