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6 Self-care Practices that Won’t Break Your Bank Account

Self-care is your ability to minister or tend to your needs because you love yourself.





When I came to the United States more than 16 years ago, I couldn't work immediately because I did not have a working permit. I was bored since I was used to working. Then, when I received my green card, I was so excited that I would finally get to work. Then, my excitement led me to just constantly work, work, and work. I worked 9-16 (double shift) hours a day with little sleep. I did not have time for myself. Then, I felt my body was exhausted. The joy of working was gone. I felt my mind and body screaming at me! When are you going to stop and have fun!


STOP and have FUN! Yup! 2 essential words that we often neglect. When was the last time you stopped and had fun, like the real essence of fun? When you laugh out loud without thinking what other people will say about how loud and how you laugh? When did you stop thinking about what others said and do something for yourself that made you happy?


Many people forget to have fun when they become adults and have many responsibilities. The "fun" activities are often geared toward others (their children, spouses, friends, relatives, or co-workers). In the worst case, some people spend most of their time on social media to get an instant dopamine boost.


Some people spend more time working to make ends meet and getting stuck in low-paying jobs. While others try to keep up with new gadgets or toys and chase shiny objects, they spend more than they earn. In a fast-changing society, time has become a precious commodity many people need help managing properly. Hence, many experience an imbalance between family, work, and personal life.


People are overworked and become disconnected from their God, themselves, and others. More and more people are living with stress, anxiety, and depression, and many are unsatisfied with their lives. They feel empty.


Are you one of these people?

I have good news for you. There is an antidote to feeling emptiness, stress, anxiety, and depression. What is the remedy? SELF-CARE that springs from SELF-LOVE.


Self-care is your ability to minister or tend to your needs because you love yourself.

(Important note: Not all people who practice self-care love themselves, but all people who love themselves practice self-care).


If you want to learn more about the difference between self-love and self-care and the different self-care strategies that will take you to a deeper love for yourself, please get the new book Finding Your Lost Self: The 30-Day Journey to Self-Love. This is also available on Amazon.


Self-care activities help release the feel-good hormones, the happy hormones endorphins serotonin, dopamine, and Oxytocin.

Many people think that self-care is expensive. It will cost you more time and money. It is not always the case unless you equate self-care with taking a vacation, spending time in a spa, or buying expensive clothes (though these could also be an expression of self-care). There are different ways you can practice self-care without breaking the bank.



Here are the top 7 tips for self-care that you can easily incorporate into your daily activities.


Have fun! As we try to balance the different areas of our lives, family, work, and other responsibilities, we often forget to take care of ourselves. We fail to have fun. You don't need to spend much time and money to have fun. Ask yourself, what can you do today that you can incorporate into your daily schedule that is fun for you? For example, I enjoy moving my body, like dancing and other activities that move my body. Hence, as a teacher, I dance with my students or play with them in the playground, or I dance and sing while cooking or cleaning the house. Think of the fun activities for you, and pick one or two that you can creatively incorporate into your daily activities.


Take deep breaths. Pause from time to time to take deep breaths. As a special education teacher, deep breathing is one of my calming tools, which I also teach my students. When you are in frustrating situations or under so much stress, your breath becomes short and shallow, which leads to more anxiety, panic attacks, and anger. Deep breaths will calm you down. It helps the flow of oxygen in your body. It slows your heartbeat and blood pressure, usually elevated when stressed.


Drink Water. About 60% of our body is water. Hence, drinking enough water is essential for our health. Water flushes toxins from our bodies and helps us look young. It also helps maintain blood pressure and carries oxygen in our body. Water will keep you energized. Drinking water is so easy; drinking a glass does not take a minute.


Soak up the Sun. You don't have to pay a single penny for sunlight. It is available for all of us. Sunshine triggers your skin to produce vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin. Vitamin D not only strengthens your bones and teeth but also reduces depression. So, if you feel depressed, take in plenty of sunshine. According to the National Institute of Health, the best time to be exposed to the sun is between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. However, you pay attention to the weather. You don't want to be exposed to the sun when it is too hot for your body. Since I live here in Arizona, where the weather is usually hot, I go out early, between 7 and 9, to get some sun.


Get Enough Sleep. There are studies that show 7 to 8 hours a day is enough sleep. However, this is not the case for many people. Listen to your body and pay attention to what is enough sleep for you. Sometimes, I only sleep for 6 hours and sometimes 5, but I wake up refreshed and completely awake. Sometimes, I sleep for over 8 hours and am still tired and sleepy. The quality of sleep rather than the quantity is more important when it comes to identifying what is enough. Try to track your sleeping habits this week and log how many hours you sleep and how you feel when you wake up. Adjust your sleeping time once you see your pattern to get enough sleep.


Practice Mindfulness. Mindfulness is all about becoming aware of your present moment. Living in the NOW and savoring it because this is all you have. When I was in the convent, my formator kept reminding me of this practice because my mind was all over the place, and she saw it in how I behaved. When was the last time you really tasted and savored the food you eat? When was the last time you took the time to smell and feel the texture of your food as it got into your mouth and tasted the different flavors of the food you were eating? Or being connected to your food? We eat all the time, but we usually rush to the next activity and forget to enjoy what we eat. Try it today; when you eat, just eat. Savor and enjoy what you eat.


Prayer and Meditation. Prayer and meditation are the best tools that you can have to put your stress at bay and even overcome different arrays of mental, emotional, and physical struggles and difficulties. Studies show that prayer and meditation reduce stress and increase happiness and peace of mind. Try practicing it today. You have nothing to lose. You don't have to pay anything to call God, and you can practice meditation free of charge.


There are a lot of resources for meditation on YouTube. You can also download our free meditation resources here.



Self-care is not optional. It is a must for you and all of us who have different life responsibilities and want to live a life with more inner peace and joy.


Spend at least 10 minutes of your day just for you. You DESERVE IT!


 

Please take our Self-Love Inventory to know where you are in your journey to self-love and your next steps.


How about you? Do you make self-care a must in your daily activity? If so, what are your self-care activities? If not, what hinders you from giving time for yourself? Please share your comments below.


God bless You, and May You Always Live in the Power of Love!



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About Dolly


Dolly Tampos Oksman, MA, MAED-SPED, is a Transformational Speaker, Author, Certified Wellness Coach, Special Education Teacher, and Behavior Analyst. She is the Founder and Owner of Love. Heal. Believe. LLC.


Dolly experienced chronic stress that affected her mental and emotional health. However, when she entered the convent to be a missionary nun, she learned the secrets of how to live a fulfilled life with inner peace and joy. Today, she is sharing those secrets with you. Dolly is on a mission to help you develop a deeper love for yourself and find long-term solutions to stress. Her new book, Finding Your Lost Self, which is also available on AMAZON and her programs & Services will take you on a step-by-step journey to a happier, healthier, and calmer life with less stress. Please contact Dolly HERE.


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