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Why Self-Care is Important + 101 Self-Care Ideas

What is self-care? Learn why self-care is important and get 101 simple self-care ideas to incorporate into your life.

why self care is important and 101 self care ideas

Happy Sunday!

I am SO excited to be sharing a brand new series that I'm launching on the blog called, Self-Care Sundays. This is a series dedicated to all things self-care – from mindfulness, routines, exercise, stress, natural beauty, at home/DIY, and more!

I've been wanting to add more lifestyle type content onto the blog as I personally believe that how we live has as much of an impact on our health as how we eat. Don't get me wrong, the nutrition side of things is super important, but when we are also focusing on other areas of our life (mental, physical, emotional, etc.), we can optimize things that much more.

I struggled to find a place to fit this content because for the last 7 years my website has been pretty much solely focused on the food aspect of things, so this piece never quite felt like it fit. But last weekend as I was coming up with new things I want to try (and achieve) in 2018, this series just came to me.

Self-Care Sundays.

I don't know about you, but I'm pumped! This is going to be a really fun series to write and put together and I think it's going to really help you!

Here's how it works: each Sunday we'll be talking about some form of self-care. It could be a recipe for a bath salt, it could be how to start a meditation practice, it could be about creating a morning routine. Really, the options here are endless, the only thing it won't be about? Food.

This is going to be a lifestyle-focused series that I know you are going to learn a TON from! And as always, I'm totally open to your feedback, so let me know how you're feeling as we go and if you have any topics you want to address/dive deeper on, I'm all years.

Now, for our first topic: SELF-CARE!

What is self-care?

If you're totally new to the concept of self-care, I thought it might be helpful to “define” it for you. I put the word “define” in quotes because there are many ways of looking at self-care. After a quick Google search, here are a few definitions I found…

  • “care for oneself” – Merriam-Webster
  • “any necessary human regulatory function which is under individual control, deliberate and self-initiated.” – Wikipedia
  • “any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health.” – Psych Central

Essentially I like to think of self-care as something you are doing for YOU and your own health and wellbeing.

Why Self-Care is Important

With so much going on in today's society, it's easy to get lost in the swing of things. Work, social and family obligations keep our schedules packed, our stress levels maxed and leave little room for us.

When we don't take the time to properly care for ourselves, it can have a big impact on our health. Self-care helps us maintain a healthy relationship with ourself and others, it helps to boost self-esteem, self-confidence and positive feelings. And who doesn't need more positive vibes in their life? #goodvibesonly

Self-care is also one of the best ways to manage stress. We're going to talk all about stress in a future SCS (Self-Care Sunday), but the amount of stress that most of us are under these days isn't good for us. It compromises our immune system, our digestive systems, our hormones, our mental and emotional health, and more. Practicing a little self-care can do HUGE things for your stress levels and will help you feel amazing.

How do we practice self-care? There's really no one-size-fits-all approach. It can look different for every single person and can even differ for you day to day. To help you get started on the self-care train, I've put together a list of 101 self-care ideas to inspire you!

101 Self-Care Ideas

  • go to your favorite workout class
  • do 5 minutes of deep breathing
  • snuggle your dog/cat
  • give someone a hug
  • take a bath
  • make a cup of herbal tea
  • read a book
  • give yourself a manicure/pedicure
  • get a message
  • get a facial
  • give yourself a facial massage
  • do a face mask
  • take a walk
  • turn your phone off
  • call your best friend
  • light some candles & gentle music
  • do an at-home yoga video
  • meditate
  • trade a foot rub with your partner (or roommate/kiddo)
  • buy yourself a fancy candle
  • leaving work early for a yoga class
  • take a 10-minute work break & get outside
  • do some light stretching at your desk
  • eat your lunch/dinner away from screens
  • Pay that extra $ for a kombucha or almond milk latte
  • Curl up with a blanket and Netflix
  • buy yourself a bouquet of flowers
  • ask your kids (or partner!) to give you a back massage
  • watch inspirational videos/following inspirational people online
  • chop veggies/make dinner to music you love
  • journal
  • pour yourself some hot coffee & read the newspaper in silence
  • choose healthy foods that will energize you
  • buy yourself a pass to a fun fitness class
  • do something creative you love
  • make yourself a green smoothie (or juice)
  • cook a new recipe
  • bake a batch of cookies (or brownies, or cupcakes, or whatever you love)
  • say “no” to something (or someone)
  • unfollow people who make you feel bad about yourself
  • follow 5 new inspiring accounts on Instagram
  • repeat a mantra
  • take yourself on a solo date
  • splurge on a natural skincare product
  • enjoy something sweet without regret
  • make a gratitude list
  • make a dreams list
  • dry brush your skin
  • find a new podcast to listen to
  • have a girls night IN
  • make yourself a kombucha “cocktail”
  • try a new exercise class
  • chew your food slowly and enjoy every single bite
  • try a new restaurant
  • make a superfood hot chocolate
  • go to bed 30 minutes early
  • sleep in (don't set your alarm)
  • stay IN on a Friday night
  • take a whole day to do nothing
  • buy a new plant
  • make a Pinterest board of inspiring quotes
  • hang some new pictures
  • find something that makes you laugh (like a deep belly laugh)
  • buy yourself some flowers (or pick them!)
  • dance in your living room
  • watch the sunset (or sunrise)
  • take a nap
  • explore a new hobby
  • sunbathe
  • book a weekend getaway
  • go to a new museum
  • find something free to do in your city or town
  • meet a friend for coffee/tea
  • try acupuncture
  • do a closet purge (and donate what doesn't bring you joy anymore)
  • smile at a stranger on the street
  • go on a picnic
  • learn a new language
  • drink more water
  • volunteer for a cause you care about
  • stay in your PJs all morning
  • do a puzzle
  • go for a hike
  • make a playlist of songs that motivate (and uplift) you
  • take a sick day
  • eat some dark chocolate
  • have a glass of your favorite wine
  • declutter a space in your home
  • try a type of cuisine you've never tasted
  • add something new to your grocery list
  • give someone else a compliment
  • diffuse essential oils
  • make your favorite comfort food and enjoy every bite
  • sweat it out in a sauna/hot yoga/hot pilates/etc.
  • sit outside for 15 minutes and do nothing
  • listen to a few chapters of an audiobook
  • find a local class to try (cooking, art, meditation, etc.)
  • get a Reiki healing session
  • talk to a therapist
  • reach out to an old friend
  • say 5 things OUT LOAD that you love about yourself

How do you practice self-care?

Share your favorite thing that you do for YOU in the comments below! The bigger we can get this list, the better ❤️ and I truly hope that you find some inspiration in this post but also all the other ones we have coming up! And if you have any other topics you'd like to see covered, let me know below!


101 self-care ideas and how to get more grounded