Google searches for ‘self-care’ have seen their largest increase in five years, self-care is a big deal. In fact, #SelfcareSunday is a popular and well-used hashtag on both Instagram and Twitter.
It’s a term that means different things to different people; for some it’s taking some time out with a book and a cup of tea, for others it’s a full spa weekend with fluffy robes and complimentary fizz. But to deliver effective self-care (whatever it means to you) you first need to be self-aware. Here are Ebor Sulis’s top tips for listening to your body and understanding what it needs.
- Don’t fight being tired
We tire for a lot of reasons, stress, poor diet, workload, kids, life, but often our tendency is to have another coffee and push through. We’re not saying finding time to sleep is always easy, but it’s important to at least understand that rest and sleep is vital to our overall wellbeing.
- Pain is not to be ignored
We’ve all had it, a niggle becomes a twinge, which becomes a persistent ache which grinds us down, affects our sleep and leaves us feeling low and fed up. We often see clients who have travelled to the far end of this process; only when it’s become too much to bear do they seek help. It means the journey back to their ‘normal’ is much longer.
- Trust your gut instinct
Smart things our digestive systems. Whilst we’re not nutritionists, we understand the effect diet can have on the body – good and bad. We’re all for balanced, nutritious eating plans which provide the right nutrients to your organs and muscle tissues. A diet which doesn’t provide this will make itself known in your gut, so pay attention.
- Don’t dry out
Your skin is the largest organ in the body and it gets thirsty. If your skin feels dry – moisturise it. You can do this by actually moisturising with cream or lotion or by making sure you stay hydrated (see below).
- Water water water
Losing as little as 2% of your body’s water content can have a noticeable effect on your ability to exercise, with mild dehydration impairing your ability to concentrate and even putting you in a bad mood. If possible always keep water handy and get into the habit of drinking it throughout the day (it’s also a really good excuse to get up from your desk and stretch!)
Self-care may sound a bit hipster-ish but people have been promoting the benefits of taking some time for yourself for a long time, just remember that giving your body the right kind of care starts with understanding what it needs. Listen to what it’s telling you.