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5 Easy Ways to Prioritize Self-Care

Flip through any magazine or scroll through any social media app and it’s likely you’ll come across some self-care inspirational message, whether it’s to go for a hike or treat yourself to warm bath. At its core, “self-care is any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health,” according to PsychCentral.

While each person approaches or defines self-care in their own way, it doesn’t mean they need to do it on their own all the time. It can involve family and friends, their community and other entities. What’s more important is taking the time to practice self-care regularly so when we need to rely on it when times get tough, it’s more accessible and familiar. That’s when the power of self-care really benefits our overall health and well-being.

How can we squeeze in time to practice self-care when we’re busy living busy lives? The key is to prioritize self-care and incorporate it in your life, either daily or weekly. Here are five ways to practice self-care daily:


#1. Get Outside

Whatever that means to you, spend some time outdoors. It could be for a daily walk, I could be for a run, it could be to simply step outside for five minutes, take a seat on a bench and absorb the scenery.


#2. Do What You Love

Take stock of what you enjoy (or want to try) and do more of it. I’ve always enjoyed architectural sketches, but it never occurred to me to try it myself since I’m not an architect. Then I came across a global movement called Urban Sketchers and learned anyone is welcome to practice drawing on location. I found a weekend seminar devoted to urban sketching, so I took a chance and signed up. Were my sketches good? Not at all. Was the experience fun? Absolutely. It got me out of my routine and allowed me to try something new and I had the opportunity to meet new friends. Love live music? Crocheting? Reading? Writing? Gardening? You get the idea. Whatever you love, set aside to do more of that or take a class and learn something new.


#3. Eat Healthy and Nutritious Foods

This is one of those things that when we’re on the go, we tend to grab whatever we can quickly and that’s not usually the healthiest option. Research published in the Canadian Journal of Public Health notes that “one’s mood or psychological state can affect what and how much one eats, and eating affects one’s mood and psychological well-being.” If you know your week is going to be busy, plan your meals ahead of time. Can’t do it for all your meals? Then consider ramping up your snacks. It’s just as easy to grab a piece of fruit as it is to grab a candy bar.


#4. Meditate – Your Way

Meditation can take many forms and they don’t all involve sitting with your legs crossed and chanting Ommm — although that’s great too! Meditation is about being present and connecting with your inner being. I journal every morning as my form of meditation while one of my friends swears by her daily yoga practice to center her. You can also pray, meditate using an app or go for a walk.


#5. Put in on Your Calendar

 Self-care is not a waste of time. Self-care is not selfish. Someone once compared it to flight attendants asking you to put on your oxygen mask before you put one on another person during an emergency when flying. We cannot take care of others (at least not for very long) without taking care of ourselves first. For some of us, if it’s not on the calendar as an appointment, it won’t get done. For others, it’s a great reminder.

Self-care is an important part of our overall health and well-being and the more time we take to incorporate it into our lives, the better off we and those in our community will be in the long run.

Megy Karydes
Author: Megy Karydes

Megy Karydes is a Chicago-based writer. Her new book, 50 Ways to More Calm, Less Stress: Scientifically Proven Ways to Relieve Anxiety and Boost Your Mental Health Using Your Five Senses, will be available January 2024. Sign up for her free monthly newsletter to receive more self care tips at

Website: https://www.megykarydes.com