Mmmm Self Care. A phrase that makes some squirm with discomfort and others sigh with feelings of joy, relief and contentment.
Each persons definition of “Self Care” can vary, but regardless, it is something that we really can’t live without.
Self Care not only helps us to reduce stress and anxiety but can also promote greater happiness by giving our bodies time to refresh, re-energise and recover during the week. This in turn, enables us to perform at our optimum each and every day.
Given our busy schedules, it can sometimes be easier to convince ourselves that we’re “fine”, that we don’t have time for self-care, or that we’re “superhuman”. Yet, it’s during these times that we often need self-care the most.
Self Care Ideas – 6 Types of Self Care for Stress and Anxiety
Despite what some may think, self-care is not an act of being “selfish” or neglecting family or other responsibilities. Nor should you feel guilty about taking some time out to spoil yourself.
Self-care is about looking after yourself and your well-being in the right way so you can perform at your best in all areas of your life.
It also helps to ensure that your internal resources aren’t depleted so you have the energy to reach out and help others when in need.
“You can’t pour from an empty cup!”
Whether you’re in need of some physical, emotional, spiritual, intellectual or social love and nurturing, or even just something that stimulates your senses, there are many different self-care ideas you can try.
The main thing I suggest is to strive for a balance between all 6 types of Self Care.
1. Self-Care Ideas for Your Senses
Humans are extremely sensual beings.
It’s amazing how powerful certain smells, sounds, tastes or sights can be, especially when it comes to impacting how we feel emotionally. They can even trigger certain memories which impact how we perceive the world around us.
Indulging your senses and pampering yourself from time to time is an important self-care strategy to promote relaxation and reduce your stress and anxiety levels.
It can also help you to live in the present, instead of constantly worrying about the future or the past.
Here are some self-care ideas to treat your senses:
Touch, warmth & comfort
Enjoy a peaceful bath with candles,essential oils,calming music and even some Epsom Salts(which can help to reduce muscle tension).
Visit a Sauna or enjoy a relaxing spa session
Get a massage or facial. Or even invest your time in doing a DIY face mask or painting your nails.
Go shopping and buy something you look f.a.b.u.l.o.u.s in
Treat yo’self with something delicious! – Maybe some chocolate, ice cream or a cheeky glass of wine to satisfy your palate
Enjoy a cosy mug of herbal tea – Chamomile tea, Peppermint tea or tea with Lavender can be some great options
Go on a walk in a national or local park and enjoy breathing in some fresh air as you observe all the beautiful nature and animals around you.
Watch your favourite movie
Listen to a song you love. Sing and dance along in the car even if someone spots you whilst stopped at the traffic lights – Yes, we’ve all been there!!
If you’d like to gain insight into some other daily habits that can help you to live a more organised, productive and happy life, ensure to download your FREE Daily Happiness Checklistby entering your details below:
2. Self-Care to Deal With Emotions
As humans, we naturally experience a large spectrum of emotions.
This is why it’s important to take the time to listen to and become aware of what’s going on in your head and what emotions you’re feeling. This is key for general health and well-being.
By identifying your triggers and tuning in to your emotions, you will gain great insight into what makes you sad, angry, anxious and happy.
It’s never healthy to bottle up your emotions – trust me I know! This used to be my strategy… But, I can tell you now, it’s not healthy and doesn’t work long-term.
Here are some Self Care Ideas to help you healthily cope with your emotions and reduce stress and anxiety levels:
Adopting a positive mindset and engaging in positive self-talk rather than focusing on the negative can have amazing benefits for your mental health and wellbeing, and help to overcome limiting beliefs.
Clean and declutter your house
There’s nothing better than a good cleanse and the smell of cleanliness. It will also help you to feel in greater control of your life.
Sing and dance along to your favourite song with no cares in the world!
Rid Yourself of Negative Energy
Release emotions through creative activities and hobbies (Eg. Art, Cooking, Singing or Playing a musical instrument)
Get into writing.
Some people find writing in a journal can with their ability to express what they’re feeling or thinking. Get it out of your head and on paper! This will help to put things into perspective and understand what’s really going on.
Engage in regular exercise to release negative emotions and release endorphins.
Watch a sad movie and cry it all out
Learn to say no
It’s ok to say no to people sometimes. Saying yes to everything requested if you will only result in additional stress or burn out. If your initial response to something isn’t “Hell yeah!”, then say no.
“Rest and self-care are so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.”– Eleanor Brownn
3. Self-Care for Your Mind
In addition to looking after our bodies, we need to look after our mind too. Find things that you enjoy doing and that are mentally stimulating.
This is not your work. I am referring to other hobbies or activities that you like doing outside of your 9-5.
This type of self-care is all about learning new things, developing your skill-set, finding your passions and expanding your knowledge.
Here are some self-care ideas you can look into:
Watch a documentary or informative Netflix Series
Write out your 5-year goals. Take time to think about you, your life purpose and your needs. Consider where you want to be and what you need to put in place to get there.
Complete a Sudoku, puzzle or brain teaser
Read a book
Start learning a new language or skill
Take a course on a topic of interest. It could be for personal or professional development.
On the topic of courses, I actually offer a FREE Meditation for Beginners eCourse to help get beginners started with Mindfulness Meditation – If interested, you can sign up for the Meditation course here.
4. Self-Care for Your Body
This is probably the most commonly promoted type of self-care in our communities.
Whether it’s eating a healthy and balanced diet or exercising throughout the week, caring for your body in the right ways is important for proper functioning and long-term vitality.
Our bodies are like machines and we’re only given ONE! This is why you must fuel it with the right things, so it can perform at its best.
To prevent procrastination, find something that you enjoy and that works for your routine. This will ensure that you don’t see it as a burden every time you need to do it.
Here are some Self-care ideas you can incorporate into your daily routine:
Get your 7-9 hours of sleep each night.
If this requires going to bed earlier than normal, good! Aim to get the right amount of sleep every night and your body will love you and you’ll feel more rested and rejuvenated.
Eat a balanced diet containing lots of lean meats, fruits, nuts and vegetables.
Reduce the amounts of sugar, coffee and alcohol you consume on a daily basis.
Aim to drink 8 glasses of water each day
Start group fitness, Yoga or Pilates classes
If you’re not very self-motivated get a personal trainer (PT). They’ll help to get you back in shape.
Start social dance classes
Get your hair done
Paint your nails
Look after your skin with relevant cleansers, moisturisers, exfoliants and sunscreen.
If you can’t fit it in before or after work, go for a walk or run during your lunch break
5. Self- Care for Your Soul
Nourish your soul by becoming more spiritual, finding inner peace and meaning in life, identifying your true purpose, and developing an awareness of things and people around you.
Many assume that being spiritual means you need to be “religious”. But that’s not true.
Sure, some may use religion as their spiritual outlet, but there are many other activities you can try if you’re not into that kind of thing.
Here are some Self-Care ideas to help you nurture your soul:
Get out in nature. Go hiking! Or even just a casual walk in a nearby park.
Appeal to your sense of adventure – try something you haven’t done before.
If religious, you may like to engage in prayer
Unplug from Social Media for 24 hours
6. Self-Care for Your Inner Social Butterfly
As humans, we naturally crave a sense of belonging and social connection with friends and family.
This is why it’s so important to surround yourself with a strong support system of friends and family who you trust and who make you feel good about yourself, exactly as you are.
Develop positive relationships with people who encourage you to be the best version of yourself and cut those who don’t.
Toxic people should have absolutely no room in your life. They not only suck your energy but will deliberately try to put you down. These people have to go and yes that does mean gradually distancing yourself which can be hard at times.
Whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, here are some self-care ideas to help you satisfy your inner social butterfly:
Catch up with a close friend for a coffee and have a laugh
Join social groups or communities that share similar interests and that encourage you to meet new people
Volunteer and help others in need
Play with your pets. It’s amazing how happy our furry friends can make us feel.
Spend more time with family and loved ones
Ok, so you should now be equipped with some great self-care ideas to help reduce stress and anxiety symptoms and encourage you to live a happier and more balanced lifestyle.
I’s recommend scrolling back through the lists again and write down any self-care ideas that would work well with your routine and lifestyle.
“Taking care of yourself doesn’t mean me first, it means me too.” – L.R Knost
So you think you or someone else may have anxiety?
Well, there are a few common symptoms that many anxiety sufferers experience on a daily basis.
Some anxiety symptoms can be obvious to detect, whilst others are much more subtle. But, before I go into any further details I’d like to highlight two important points:
Suffering from everyday anxiety versus an anxiety disorder is quite different
I am not a doctor or medical physician, so if you think you’re suffering from anxiety or an anxiety disorder, you should always seek medical advice and diagnosis. The information I provide here is for informational purposes only : )
If you’re unsure of the differences between everyday anxiety and an anxiety disorder, ensure to read:
Now, I’m going to get into some more detail about the main causes of anxiety and the common symptoms of anxiety and anxiety disorders.
What Causes Anxiety?
Stress is one of the greatest causes of anxiety problems. It can stem from:
A major life event or sudden change
The loss of a close family member
Experiencing a panic attack
Everyday stressors including:
A busy lifestyle
Built-up traffic jams
Waiting in long queues when you’re in a rush
Being overloaded at work
Trying to respond to a never-ending trail of emails
I’m definitely not a stranger to that kind of stress…as I’m sure many of you aren’t either.
Stress is a very normal part of our daily lives, but if left unchecked it can transform into anxiety pretty quickly.
Alongside stress, people with certain personality types can be more susceptible to anxiety and anxiety disorder, compared to others. AND like many other health conditions, anxiety can run in families. So yes, it can be related to your genetics too.
Now, let’s look at some general symptoms of anxiety.
Symptoms of Every Day Anxiety
People with “everyday” anxiety often experience the following symptoms:
Uncontrollable worrying and overthinking
Constantly seeking or needing reassurance
Lack of patience
Memory issues or difficulty remembering things
Sleep problems (Insomnia)
Find it difficult to relax – often appearing hyperactive, nervous or agitated
Feel disconnected from the world and those around them
Avoid or procrastinate with certain tasks particularly if it is something they’re anxious about
Have “All or nothing” thinking
Tight chest and muscle tension
Feel like they can’t breathe due to constriction or shortness of breath, sometimes leading to hyperventilation.
Racing heartbeat and intense thumping in the chest
Panic or anxiety attacks
Loss of appetite
Natural Ways to Overcome Anxiety Symptoms
If you think you suffer from general anxiety symptoms, I have some tips and pointers that can help you to reduce some of these anxiety symptoms naturally.
My first suggestion is to get started with meditation and mindfulness training.
For me, developing a meditation habit has been one of the best things I have ever done. It has had a profound impact on my ability to control my anxiety and stress levels and has helped me to feel greater contentment and happiness in life.
Next up, let’s talk about the symptoms of anxiety disorders.
Anxiety Disorder Symptoms
Anxiety disorders differ from everyday feelings of anxiety because they have much more extreme symptoms. They tend to impact a person’s daily functioning and performance, in a much more severe way than normal feelings of anxiety.
The symptoms of anxiety disorders can vary slightly, however, there are a few common signs and symptoms you can keep an eye out for.
Generally, symptoms include stress that is out of proportion to the impact of the event, with an inability to set aside worry or restlessness, even after the stressor or stressful event has subsided.
Feel intensely worried, afraid, restless, panicky, tense, nervous, scared or on edge most of the time
Have fearful, overwhelming, extreme and racing thoughts as though everything around them is going to go wrong or may result in their death
They are extremely irritable and easily agitated
Have difficulty concentrating
Often feel detached from their body and surroundings
Worry that they’re going crazy and feel that no one understands
They sometimes avoid leaving the house for extended periods of time due to their anxiety or fears
Have difficulty relaxing and unwinding due to their repetitive thoughts and feelings
Start avoiding social situations as a result of a certain anxiety or fear
In addition to the mental symptoms, people suffering from anxiety disorders can also experience physical symptoms such as:
Insomnia and sleep difficulties (can’t sleep or stay asleep)
A throbbing heart and heart palpitations (similar to that mentioned under anxiety symptoms)
Stomach aches or churning– sometimes to the point where they feel like they could vomit
Light-headedness or dizziness
Twitches and trembling
In some cases, they can develop impulsive behaviours or compulsions in an attempt to regain control or to avoid certain circumstances
Anxiety Disorder Diagnosis & Treatment
Given there a number of different diagnoses for anxiety disorders, you should always seek advice from a medical professional to determine whether you’re suffering from an anxiety disorder, rather than relying on self-diagnosis.
Although medications including sedatives and antidepressants are commonly prescribed to help manage symptoms, there are some other natural alternatives you can check out including:
Himalayan Salt Lamps are becoming increasingly popular, with many having either heard of them or having bought and positioned them around their homes already.
By why are people doing this? Is it just some hippie trend or a phase they’re going through?
The answer: Absolutely, not!
Don’t worry, owning a Himalayan Salt Lamp will not turn you into some hippy friend. Nor is it just a fad going around… like high-waisted arse revealing shorts. Please please go away….
Instead, Himalayan Salt Lamps are believed to have numerous health benefits, including their ability to counteract the negative impact of electronic appliances in our home environments.
What is a Himalayan Salt Lamp? AND Why do people buy them?
What The Heck is a Himalayan Salt Lamp?
Simply, a real Himalayan Salt Lamp is made up of a big chunk of pure, hand-carved Himalayan salt. It then has a hole cut out of the centre for a light bulb.
This turns a normal block of Himalayan salt into a lamp – a very simple and soothing light source.
These days, most Himalayan Salt Lamps aren’t bought for their lighting capabilities (which let’s be honest, is pretty modest).
Adding the globe inside these rocks instead serves the purpose of helping to stimulate the beneficial properties of the salt (which I’ll explain more about below).
Due to their recent popularity, there are a number of suppliers selling fakes (not made from pure Himalayan Rock Salt)!
This is why it is so important to ensure that you’re buying from a reputable supplier.
“Ok cool, but what is Himalayan Salt?”
2. What is Himalayan Salt & Where Does it Come From?
Himalayan Salt (or Pink Salt, Himalayan Crystal Salt, Himalayan Sea Salt, Rock Salt as it is commonly referred), is a natural salt sourced from the Punjab region of Pakistan.
This very ancient region, located approximately 190 miles away from the Himalayas, is known to have one of the richest salt fields in the world. Some even say that the salt obtained from here dates back to as early as Earth’s creation. Crazy, huh?!
When consumed, the Sodium Chloride (NaCl) properties of the salt are beneficial to our internal health, helping to:
Maintain healthy body functioning
Improve nerve conduction
Increase the absorption of nutrients and the elimination of waste products
According to Dr. Sircus,the purest Himalayan crystal salt comes from salt mines beneath the Himalayan Mountain Range – located as deep as 5,000 feet below.
Due to the pressure, it has received over millions of years, this salt is deemed to be top spec at over 99% pure.
The traditional Himalayan Salt Rocks that you see available to the public, online or at markets may be sourced instead from the higher regions of the Himalayan Mountains. They are still pure Himalayan Salt but may contain other impurities compared to the 99% pure salt mentioned above.
The mineral concentration in the salt can also influence its colour.
Himalayan Salt Lamps typically range from a light pink or pinkish orange colour to some rarer white forms. The whiter forms are much rarer than the usual Himalayan Rock Salt and is, therefore, much more expensive.
Why Do People Buy Himalayan Salt Lamps?
The popularity and interest towards Himalayan Salt Lamps over the last few years has grown dramatically.
Himalayan Salt Lamps are believed to:
Purify the air; restoring and preserving natural air quality
Correct the imbalance of ions in our home environments
Neutralise the Electro Magnetic Field (EMF) that we get in our homes, due to having extensive electrical devices surrounding us
Reduce symptoms of asthma, allergies and other illnesses
Improve mood and reduce stress or anxiety symptoms
Increase energy levels
Boost serotonin levels
FYI: Serotonin is an important chemical and neurotransmitter in the human body. It is believed to help us to regulate our moods, appetite, digestion, sleep, memory and also for general bodily functioning.
Himalayan Salt Lamps vs. Himalayan Salt Candle Holders
Both work as well as one other (if the same size) so when deciding which one to buy, it’s going to mainly depend on your personal preferences and what you find more visually attractive or appealing.
I personally own 2 Himalayan Salt Tea-Light Candle Holders and am in love with them. I find them to be soothing and therefore help me to relax.
Especially after a busy day at work; reducing any feelings of stress and anxiety.
One obvious advantage of a Himalayan Salt Lamp over a Tea-Light Candle Holder is that you don’t have to replace the bulbs as often as you do candles. However, Himalayan Tea-Light Candle Holders are a more natural option that don’t require electricity to function.
Want to Get a Himalayan Salt Lamp for Yourself?
If you’re interested in getting a Himalayan Salt Lamp or a Himalayan Salt Candle Holder for yourself or a friend, here are some links you can check out for more information:
In this article, I talk about some key things you should look out for before taking the plunge and buying a Himalayan Salt Lamp.
If you don’t read this article, you could end up buying a FAKE which would leave you feeling very disappointed.
In this article, I also share my results from several hours of research on numerous brands. I review 4 popular Salt Lamp Brands on Amazon, to help you to reduce your likelihood of ending up with a dud!!
They were my winner after my research of numerous salt lamp suppliers because:
82% of their 1,688 customer reviews on Google have been 5-star which is pretty awesome compared to other companies
At this point in time, it has been awarded the “Amazon’s Choice” label.
Happy customers have raved about the quality and appearance of the lamps. Some have also mentioned that they think the touch sensor switch is pretty cool
They claim that their salt lamps are professionally hand-carved Himalayan rock salt from the Khewra mines in Pakistan and that they have a mining certificate, unlike other suppliers to prove it.
Products come with a 1-year warranty, however you also get the option to extend to 2 years for FREE. They also have a 90-day money back guarantee and pride themselves on providing good customer service. A user manual and warranty card are included with the products.
Lamps come in secure packaging to reduce the likelihood of damage
You can choose to have a stainless-steel baseor a wooden base with your lamp. Personally, I prefer a wooden base, but have linked both options in case you want to check either of them out.
Note: Due to Amazon’s shipping restrictions to Australia, if you’re from “Down Under” (like I am,) the products below may have cheaper shipping. I personally own 2 of the SMAGREHO Himalayan Salt Lamps and love them!