Types of Self Care
In a recent post on Hero Town, we discussed the importance of self care and a few ways to integrate self care into your routine. Today, we will be going further into depth on the different types of self care as outlined by Reach Out Australia. The purpose of understanding and practising these types of self care is to ensure that all aspects of our lives are healthy. Take note that not every category may be relevant to you. To ensure your own holistic wellbeing, make sure to identify the areas that best suit your needs and work to practise that self care.
Workplace or professional self care
The purpose of this self care is to help you to be at your best capacity in work and your relations with colleagues. Examples of how to practise this include setting up a peer-support group with your co-workers and attending professional development programs. Another aspect of this self care is setting reasonable boundaries of professionalism between yourself and clients or employees, so that you are both able to fulfill your roles to the best of your ability.
Practising physical self care helps you to stay fit and healthy. Regular activities include a consistent sleep routine, maintaining a healthy diet and taking your dog for a walk. Doing these exercises is designed to provide you with enough energy to perform your work and personal commitments.
These are the kinds of activities that are most commonly associated with self care. The aim of this type of self care is to help you feel clear-headed enough to calmly engage with any of the challenges you encounter in your life. Examples include keeping a reflective journal, finding a hobby separate from work or school, spending time with family or peers, and setting aside time for relaxation.
Having a healthy understanding and means of expressing your emotions is important for an overall state of well-being. Some recommendations practising emotional self care include developing supportive and open friendships, watching a movie you love, and participating in fun activities with your social group. Another helpful technique is to keep a positivity journal, and endeavour to write down three positive things about yourself each day.
A sense of spiritual well-being isn’t necessarily tied to religious beliefs, although that can be closely connected. Reach Out Australia defines spiritual self care as activities that enhance your perspective beyond your everyday life. Some activities include going on a meditative walk, practising self reflection and learning mindfulness.
It is important to maintain healthy, supportive relationships in our personal lives outside of work or school. Try to prioritise close relationships such as your friends, partner, family and children. You may do this by supporting and encouraging them in their hobbies, passions and achievements. Make sure to spend some of your time off with the people close to you, doing activities you both enjoy and practise active listening with your friends and family.
Create your own self care plan
Reach Out Australia provides their own self care plan that you may like to fill out and follow in your own time. You may prefer to create your own template and customise it to your liking. Fill out the plan with activities that complement the types of self care that interest you. Keep the chart somewhere you will see it regularly so you will know to stick to your plan. It is suggested that once a month you conduct a reflection on your progress and whether you have been following your plan.
Sometimes the most important thing in a whole day is the rest we take between two deep breaths. – Etty Hillesum
If you find that you’re having trouble sticking to that plan, that isn’t a personal failure. Think of it instead as a future attempt in learning for your self care journey. It may be that the activities aren’t suitable for your schedule, and that something may need to be readjusted. Try a different lineup of self care activities and be realistic about your goals and expectations. You may find that the activities that most benefit you aren’t what you would expect. What is most important is that your self care is tailored towards your needs and that you are getting the most possible benefit from them.