In a world filled with stress and distraction, self-care often falls by the wayside. Work and personal life pressures can stack up fast, so we rationalize not spending time on self-care activities that would dramatically increase our quality of life.
But when we take a minute to analyze the situation, most of us have it all backward. In truth, self-care should be the foundation of everything we do, rather than an afterthought that gets pushed into the footnotes of our schedule. After all, how are you supposed to care for your loved ones, combat burnout, and maintain your emotional health throughout the ups and downs of life?
It’s time that we reorient our priorities and set the record straight. Today, we’re outlining the importance of self-care practices and offering some practical self-care tips to implement daily. No more putting it off for later — your self-care commitment starts right now.
Why is self-care essential in today's world?
It should seem obvious why self-care matters in today’s fast-moving world. Still, so many of us forget the basics and let the stress pile up over time. Before you know it, you’re burnt out, mentally exhausted, and bogged down by negativity and distractions.
One thing is certain: this world is stressful. Just look at the health and well-being of the average American to see for yourself. From the pandemic to toxic politics and endless social media scrolling, it’s no wonder why so many of us neglect our own self-care.
However, there’s a silver lining to this dilemma. If you can check in with yourself and discover a form of self-care that works for you, the possibilities for achievement and fulfillment are unlimited. If you can change your own life with simple self-care practices and an organized daily routine, you can change the lives of others and have a profound impact on people around you.
Let’s talk about the practical side of self-care and get you started with a workable routine for daily life.
How does self-care affect mental health?
The idea of self-care seems simple enough: care for yourself first, and everything else falls into place. But what does science say about self-care and why it really matters?
First, let’s consider the physiological aspects of self-care. By prioritizing your physical health through exercise, nutrition, and good sleep, you’re checking the boxes off that your body needs to thrive. Since so few people maintain these three necessities, we’ve forgotten what baseline health looks and feels like.
By elevating this standard of physical health, the knock-on effects for mental health emerge. Your body benefits from feel-good chemicals like endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine regulation. Stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline level out, so you aren’t in a chronic state of “fight or flight.”
This sheds light on the “stacking” effect of self-care, starting with the fundamentals of physical health and expanding upwards and inwards. With a solid foundation of physical self-care, you can declutter the mind, clarify your goals, and start working towards a higher state of being.
On a practical level, you’ll be better able to manage stress, shake off negativity, and strive for continuous improvement in every facet of life — less fatigue, less burnout, and better living. The equation is simple, but the implementation can be challenging.
What are some self-care ideas?
Now that we know the power of self-care and why it’s important, it’s time to go from theory to practice. What are some proven, practical self-care ideas you can add to your routine without hours of extra time?
We’ve chosen 12 self-care ideas that anyone can implement daily, covering all the bases of physical, mental, and emotional health.
1. Mindfulness practice
Self-care starts by getting to know yourself again. Mindfulness is one of the most effective and healthy ways to restore this relationship.
There’s no all-encompassing blueprint to mindfulness, but there are several methods you can learn and apply. Meditation and deep breathing are great starting points, offering a glimpse into your inner life and perspective on your emotions and self-talk.
Try out some guided meditations online and practice the art of deep breathing throughout the day. Pair this practice with Neuro Water Soluble CBD to enhance your mental clarity, focus, and feelings of calm. This practice sets the stage for the rest of your self-care journey, making it a perfect place to begin.*
2. Spending time outdoors
The great outdoors has a restorative, inspiring effect on the body and mind. You reap the benefits of fresh air, take in the beauty of the natural world, and get your daily dose of Vitamin D from the sun.
Even if you’re in a city in the middle of winter, spending time outdoors can boost your mood and give you a much-needed sense of perspective. Carve out at least 30 minutes every day to walk, jog, or simply relax in the park. Combine this with your mindfulness practice to get the most from each minute spent outdoors.
A blank page can be intimidating when tasking yourself with a journal practice. Thankfully, there’s only one rule when it comes to journaling: just write!
You can vent frustrations, reflect on events, or list goals you aim to accomplish. The more you write and clarify your thoughts, the easier it will be to continue exploring your inner world.
The benefits of journaling might not be instantly noticeable, but they tend to become clearer as you maintain a consistent effort. Make journaling a daily practice, and you’ll see why it’s such a powerful practice.
4. Digital detox
Our world is constantly connected, with screens and social media feeds at every turn. While you might enjoy the perks of communication and entertainment, this constant digital overload can leave us feeling burnt out and stressed.
A digital detox offers a way to unplug from the madness and get back to our natural state of being. Start with a few hours without your phone, computer, tablet, or TV (and turn off your Wi-Fi, too). It won’t take long before you feel the urge to plug back in, but you’ll soon feel clarity and calmness that you may not have experienced for years.
A true digital detox could take days or weeks, but why not start small? Your mind and body will appreciate the peace and quiet that comes with a daily digital detox.
Aromatherapy involves diffusing essential oils to calm the body that induces a sense of relaxation. You don’t need fancy contraptions or expensive oils — a simple setup will do the trick.
Test out various scents like peppermint, lavender, rosemary, or eucalyptus. Each oil has unique properties that will help take your mind off the daily grind and bring you back to balance.
You can use aromatherapy in the morning to get energized or wind down at the end of the day. Learn which oils are best suited for each situation, and enjoy!
6. Engaging in hobbies
While watching an entire season of a TV show by yourself might sound like a hobby, think again!
Hobbies are meant to enrich your quality of life rather than serve as a distraction. Examples include team sports, book clubs, or creative projects you can share with friends. You may even find a way to make some money doing what you love!
Taking time to engage in the activities you’re passionate about is a great way to reconnect with yourself and practice self-care — plus, it gives you the opportunity to continue honing your skills.
7. Take a warm bath
Sinking into a warm bath is one of those unmatched feelings of total relaxation. The warm water, the flickering candles, and your favorite audiobook or music playlist in the background—pure bliss! Plus, the soothing effects of warm water on your muscles can evaporate tension and daily stressors, especially with a CBD bath bomb in the mix.*
The lesson here is simple: you don’t need an expensive spa day to get the self-care experience you deserve. It only takes 20 minutes in a warm bath to relax the body and mind. The next time stress strikes, why not draw a bath and soak in life?
Picking up a book can feel like a chore if you’re used to the stimulation of TV and social media. But when you finally get into the habit of reading, you’ll learn to appreciate the subtle joy of a slower-paced form of entertainment and learning.
Instead of forcing yourself to read the latest political bestseller, try something that truly appeals to your interests and lifestyle. Enjoy something light, engaging, and fun. You’ll spark the love of reading that exists in us all — it may just take some time to find it.
9. Listening to music
When was the last time you sat down and gave your full attention to some music? Explore a new genre of music or dive into historical chapters of classical or jazz.
In a world filled with hit singles and sound-bites, an old-school listening session might be just what you need for self-care. You may even find a new artist or genre you would have never encountered otherwise.
10. Physical activity
If you care for your body, your mind will follow with health and well-being. It’s a simple mantra, but one that constantly gets overlooked nowadays. If you’re looking to spark your self-care journey, start with simple, low-impact physical activity that invigorates rather than exhausts you.
Restorative yoga or pilates are great entry points for physical fitness, with a low bar for entry and basic movements. From there, you can start walking more, jogging, or cycling at your own pace. Before long, you’ll become accustomed to getting the endorphin rush of physical exercise, and you won’t look back.
Remember that nutrition and hydration are key, no matter what you have planned in terms of physical fitness. Check out our Broad Spectrum Water Hydrate Enhancer to supplement your routine with vitamins, electrolytes, and supportive CBD.*
11. Engaging in a skincare routine
What better way to show some self-love than with a daily skincare regimen? You only need a few proven products to get started, and you’ll see the benefits of your efforts in just a few weeks.
With a cleanser, a moisturizer, and a Broad Spectrum CBD Collagen Cream, you’ve already got the skincare basics dialed in. Establish a routine for morning and night, and let yourself glow to your fullest potential.
12. Spending time with loved ones
With all this talk about self-care, let’s not forget why we care for ourselves in the first place. Spending time with loved ones is what it’s all about, so remember to dedicate a portion of your schedule to the people who matter most.
When your self-care priorities are in order, you’ll be more willing and able to spend time with family, friends, and community members. You’ll feel confident in your ability to be the best version of yourself, and everyone wins.
How Can You Integrate Self-Care into a Busy Schedule?
A busy schedule shouldn’t interfere with your self-care practice, especially with this list of basic practices. Each idea presented here should only take a few extra hours from your week, which you likely already spend elsewhere on distractions and habitual entertainment.
You can easily “stack” several self-care concepts into one session. For instance, try aromatherapy combined with music and journaling. Go outside and do yoga during your digital detox. There are endless ways to mix and match to compound these benefits and thrive.
It’s simply a matter of priorities, so be willing to make some short-term sacrifices for incredible long-term returns.
Self-care isn’t about indulgence or escapism, but rather the act of self-compassion and becoming your very best, healthiest self. These ideas are just the starting point — it’s time to implement them and see the benefits for yourself.
In the meantime, equip yourself with the best CBD from Sunmed, where we offer a collection of products for sleep, relaxation, relief, performance, and more. With a game plan and the right tools in hand, there’s no limit to what you can achieve through self-care and a dedicated daily routine.