Is self-care realistic when you are stressed?

A woman standing behind the curtain black and white photo April 21


Self-care can seem like a burden when you are juggling a number of demands throughout the day. It need not involve pamper days or taking time out for yoga. It is a perspective on how you see yourself in relation to your work, business, family, friends and any other aspect of your daily life. Self-care is about building a better relationship with yourself.

By prioritizing yourself, this will enable you to move in the right direction where you develop resilience to stress.

Here are 5 ways to develop a closer and caring relationship with yourself.

1. You are important

Let’s start with you. We want to remind you about how special you truly are. You matter and so does your health. Your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health is vital. You must acknowledge how you are feeling, so that you can understand why you need to put yourself higher on your list of priorities and make better decisions that support your well-being.

Remember to regularly remind yourself that you are unique and good enough. Keep yourself anchored, so that you think about yourself in a caring and compassionate way.

2. Stop saying ‘yes’ when you really mean 'no.'

If you are the type of person who does not like letting people down; you will probably find yourself feeling resentment towards yourself because you did not feel confident enough to say ‘no’ in the first place.

You might feel awful, if you think that you are letting someone down; however, you are actually letting yourself down by not honoring how you are truly feeling and following through with your decision. You have every right to say ‘no’ to the things you do not want to do.

If saying the word ‘no’ is challenging then find creative ways to respond to a request such as: ‘I’m sorry I just can’t right now; I won’t be able to and I would love to but I can’t this week.’

When you use the term ‘no’; you create more time for the things that are more important to you. Being honest and authentic is a powerful tool that you can use to be you.

3. Reset your boundaries

Are you feeling that you are being pulled from pillar to post? Are you constantly responding to an endless work stream and the daily demands of life? It is down to you to manage other people’s expectations. You are in the driving seat and should take full advantage of that.

Review your turnaround times for responding to emails and messages. Group them into urgent and non-urgent and make a commitment to deal with the urgent matters before getting involved in the low priority tasks that can drain your time.

Think about a time that you will switch off from responding to work emails and try, to stick to it. Consider setting up an out of office response when you have finished your working day; to help manage other individuals’ expectation of when you will respond to their emails.

4. Respect your time

How would you really like to spend your time? Your time is a commodity; so if you are tempted into something like watching a funny video on WHATS APP or following trending posts on social media. Think about how this is going to impact on you then claw back time for yourself.

5. Prioritize your sleep

If you are not getting enough sleep then your mind and body are probably suffering as a result. Sleep is a top priority for a self-care regime. A good night’s sleep can work wonders for anyone who is undergoing stress. If you are having problems sleeping you might be interested in a 5 day sleep challenge to kickstart your night routine and improve your sleep patterns.

Self-care is more about your mindset and the relationship you have with yourself. Treat yourself with the same respect, care, and kindness as you would show to others.

An image of 3 young people for stress article April 21