Self-Care refers to actions and attitudes which contribute to well-being and personal health. It’s not only bubble baths and candles, but anything that helps you decompress. Self-care is not something you can randomly go purchase at a store; it includes a variety of activities tailored for each one of us.
True self-care is figuring out what resonates with you, honoring what your needs are, and working on those needs within your boundaries. Jasmine Rice is a Certified Life Coach and a “real-life expert” on divorce and has a new book, Create your own Life Recipe After Divorce.
Everyone going through a divorce needs to find ways to take care of themselves, and while we’ve all heard lots of self-care tips before, when it comes to something this important (and this is THAT important!), you need to hear the message over and over. Here are some of Jasmine’s must-do tips:
- Breathe: I’m not talking about involuntary breathing here. I’m talking about pausing when you start to get overwhelmed (or even before) and just take a DEEP breath in through your nose and out through your mouth. I’m not saying you need to spend 30 minutes a day in deep mediation breathing, even just one deep breath gets that extra oxygen flowing in your body. You can do it anywhere and the best part is, it’s FREE!
- Exercise: Endorphins play a huge role in reducing stress and anxiety. What are some ways we get endorphins flowing in your body? Eating hot peppers, sex, laughing and exercising. Hot peppers sound like they will hurt my stomach, sex—well if you going through a divorce or breakup you probably aren’t getting much. That leaves us with exercise! I’m not suggesting that you need to go run a marathon or do something strenuous. I’m suggesting you start moving your body. Even start with a walk around the block. Exercise is great for you physically, but personally, I believe there are even more mental benefits. If you have 5 minutes to get your body moving, tune into my Youtube video.
- Eat a healthy diet: When you are going through challenging times, comfort food does just that, comforts you. But if you have been eating like shit, you probably feel like shit. I’m not telling you to give up the pizza or to never eat fries again. I suggest you start with baby steps and instead of two donuts today, have 1. And drink some water PLEASE! If you aren’t a water drinker this can be challenging but water is so good for you! And if you have been crying you are dehydrated and need H2O. Start with 1 glass. Some tricks to help if you hate downing the H2O, use a squeeze of lemon or lime, try using an herbal tea bag to alter the flavor, or try a straw—I tend to drink more when I use a straw.
- Have a support network: Alone time is healing and needed, but isolating yourself from everyone is not healthy. Try to balance your alone time with connecting with positive people. Note that word positive. It can be difficult for some people to support those that are going through a challenging situation they can’t relate with. If you notice that you are more stressed by your connections, perhaps it’s time to eliminate that connection for now. You need to protect yourself and not add unnecessary stress by surrounding yourself with toxic relationships. For those relationships that are positive and uplifting, lean into those relationships.
- Get enough sleep: When you are not getting enough sleep this affects your immune system, mental clarity and your metabolism slows down. But how do you get enough sleep when your mind is spinning and you are worried about what the future hold for you? If you can’t sleep, rest. Still go to bed and turn the TV off and put the phone away and take deep breaths and do your best to re-direct your thoughts. When stressful thoughts enter your mind, replace them with a happy thought. I also recommend trying binaural beats. A binaural beat is an auditory illusion perceived when the brain hears two tones at a slightly different frequency. I will say this worked for me sometimes, other times it didn’t. Adults need between 7-9 hours of sleep. You might not be able to achieve that right away, but at least rest.
- Journal: This is worth trying, it will either work for you or it won’t. There is controversy over journaling during challenging times in your life. For some people it’s healthy to get your thoughts out there. Others believe that journaling about the struggles keeps you stuck in the past rather than moving forward. But I honestly think it’s worth a shot to see how you feel. You will either love it or not. And there are different ways you can journal: Grab a pen, pull out your laptop or even try hitting the recording on your phone for an audio journal.
To state it as short and sweet as I can, self-care is you creating your recipe of taking care of yourself in a way that preserves and improves your own mental, physical, and spiritual health.
For more, you can check out Jasmine’s free E-Book! CLICK HERE!
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