Self-care Sunday: the true self-care meaning and why it is important

Ciao, welcome back to my blog, today I am sharing with you my personal point of view about self-care and why it is important.

Like many other full-time working people out there, I am off on Sunday, therefore is my self-care day.

I do have a daily self-care routine, however, I would usually dedicate my whole Sunday to the self-care activities I might have neglected during the week, such as working out, reading, meditating...

I also write down a daily self-care checklist for the following week.

Why is self-care important?

I am sure you have already heard or read somewhere the famous phrase by Norm Kelly:

"You can't pour from an empty cup. Take care of yourself first."

That sums up the importance of self-care and why it is vital to carve out some time, even on the busiest of weeks, for some sort of well-deserved self-care practices.

It is as important as breathing, drinking enough water and having a healthy meal.

Nowadays it is a rather common word we use to justify all sorts of things, from impulse purchases to indulgent lifestyle habits and so on.

Everyone is different and perceives the world in its unique way but I think that sometimes we get carried away with what we "think" is self-care.

One of the reasons is that we are polluted every day with advertisements and misconceptions about wellbeing.

"You deserve it", "Treat yourself", "Spoil yourself" "Love yourself" are slogans of the sort that we can find pretty much everywhere, from shops, social media, advertisement and Tv programs.

But what does it really mean? How can we actually take care of yourself?

I decided to list first what doesn't mean to me personally to make some clarity.

Check out this post to know more about my self-care strategies and my mindful lifestyle:

What a healthy lifestyle means to me

What is not self-care to me:

- Shopping every weekend

- Going to the nail salon/hairdresser every week

- Eating whatever I want after a bad day

- Going out to the pub every Friday and get drunk

- Having a perfect, Instagram worthy home

Often we get sold this misleading message that self-care, especially self-care for women, is having a face mask and a hot bath every week (if not every day) and that we are allowed to buy, eat, drink whatever we want to make us happy and satisfied.

Well, I think this is why the majority of people are frustrated and sad.

We are totally missing the point.

Obviously, those self-care ideas will make us feel better or good at that particular moment but the gratification will expire in an instant.

There is nothing wrong with buying something we desire, eating a delicious meal, meeting for a drink with a friend or having a massage.

Those things are lovely.

But they are not all we need to effectively take care of ourselves, despite what society might want us to believe.

Since I embraced minimalism, I understood that only a few things are truly important for me and shopping is definitely not one of those.

I really agree with Brianna Wiest in one of her amazing self-care quotes: "True self-care is not salt baths and chocolate cake, it is making the choice to build a life you don't need to regularly escape from"

What is self-care to me:

"Mens sana in corpore sano": working out consistently and eating healthy most days.

Recognise the signs that tell me I am too stressed out/tired and slow down or take a break as a result. Ignoring signs of burn down is never a good choice and I have learned it the hard way. Self-care for anxiety is crucial to keep my life enjoyable and meaningful.

Keep both my physical and mental space decluttered and clean to have a serene place to live in and peace of mind.

Control of my financial situation, save money every month and be independent so that I am taking care of my future self and I don't have to rely on somebody else to do so in case my relationship won't work in the long term.

Nurture my relationship with my boyfriend by spending enough time together. Sometimes that means making some sacrifices in terms of work choices but it is totally worth it.

Stay in contact with the important people of my life that live far away from me.

Develop a healthy and uplifting passion/hobby such as writing, reading, drawing...instead of spending all my free time scrolling on social media/entertainment.

Don't always say yes if I want to say no and don't always accommodate others.

Don't mind what other people think of me.

Hanging out with few positive people that add value to my life while avoiding toxic relationships.

Take time to meditate/think/plan to avoid anxiety and impulse decisions.

Learn new things and push me out of my comfort zone from time to time.

Practice empathy and acts of kindness towards others more often as well as to myself (such as forgiving myself for past mistakes, bad behaviour and terrible decisions I have taken previously).

Top self-care benefits

- Increased productivity

- Less anxiety and stress

My self-care tips

Make a self-care list: having a self-care plan each week will prevent you from feeling overwhelmed

How to self-care is a skill: don't push yourself too hard but be consistent. You'll get better with time and practice.

Self-care books I love

- The subtle art of not giving a by Mark Manson

- Self-care for the Real World book by Nadia Narain and Katia Narain Phillips

- Self-care for Tough Times by Suzy Reading

- Ikigai by Yukari Mitsuhashi

- How to Not Always Be Working: A Toolkit for Creativity and Radical Self-Care by Marlee Grace

- Good vibes, good life: How self-love is the key to unlocking your greatness by Vex King

Thank you so much for reading my article today.

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What self does care mean to you?

Let me know in the comments!