Who doesn’t love a bit of self care, it’s a great way to relieve stress and keep your wellbeing in check! However, in today’s world many of us are too busy to find the time to indulge in any type of self care activity. This is why we should all be scheduling in a self care Sunday every once in a while!
You really do owe it to yourself to make YOU a priority!
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What is a self care Sunday?
A self care Sunday is a day that is prioritised for self care activities. This doesn’t actually mean pampering yourself and lazing about all day. It’s about engaging in activities that look after your whole wellbeing.
In fact there are 8 different types of self care; Physical, financial, personal, professional, social, spiritual, environmental and emotional. All these elements linked together can help relieve stress and keep our mind, body and soul healthy. This in turn can help reduce physical and mental health conditions as well as elevate symptoms of those already suffering such conditions!
In fact without self care we are in danger of becoming so stressed we become unable to manage emotions and eventually burn out!
A self care Sunday doesn’t have to be a Sunday either! For many people, me included, a self care Sunday can fall on any day of the week. If a Tuesday is best for you then a Tuesday it is!
I have always been a lover of having a self care Sunday! I love nothing more after a stressful week enjoying a day of pure self care! It’s almost like a re-set button leaving me feeling relaxed and ready to tackle a whole new week! However, the last few months have been extremely stressful and taking a self care Sunday has never been more needed!
As many of you know, as well as running this blog I’m also a registered nurse working 13 hour night shifts on a very busy trauma ward. (Although at the moment it’s all COVID patients!) I’m currently working 4/5 night shifts a week which have become increasingly stressful! So much so that I’ve started having anxiety attacks when I least expect it, probably down to the increased stress on the wards!
It’s not just us nurses that are having it bad at the moment though, everyone is finding life more stressful! This is either due to increased job pressures, financial worries, health concerns, childcare issues or just finding the whole lockdown scenarios difficult.
For many people their mental health has deteriorated, people are feeling isolated and lonely, even something a simple as having a hug has been taken away from most of us! To be honest there has never been a better time to take a self care Sunday! In my case I think I actually need a week lol.
How to have a self care Sunday
A self care Sunday will be different for everybody. Personally I like to turn off my alarm and allow myself to sleep in as long as I want. I then usually take a long hot soak in the bath and try a few beauty treatments. In the afternoon I then like to either spend some time getting crafty (usually making soap or candles) baking something nice or going out for a long walk. Then in the evening I either read a book or binge watch something on Netflix. I also take some time out to catch up on any chores and give my bedroom a little spring clean.
A self care Sunday for you could look completely different to mine but that’s ok, it’s whatever works for you. To get you started I’ve listed 10 of my favourite things to do on a self care Sunday. However you can do whatever you want, the important thing is to do something that makes you feel good and more importantly relaxed.
You don’t have to stick to the same things all the time either, just mix and match each week with whatever feels right.
Sometimes a whole day of self care can be impractical. If so, just allocate some time in your schedule that enables you to take some time out, even if that’s only half an hour or so!
10 Self care ideas for a self care Sunday:
Have a lie in
It’s recommended that we should all be getting around 8 hours of quality sleep each night! However with busy schedules, this is something that many of us, including me fail at all the time!
If this is you, turn off your alarm just for one day and try and catch up on some much needed rest. Just having one good nights sleep is usually enough to catch up on what we’ve missed during the week enabling our bodies to become fully rested!
Sometimes, one of the best ways to clear your mind is to cook something delicious. In fact, sinking your hands into some cooking is a great way to build resiliance and promote wellbeing.
I find baking to be extremely therapeutic, you become completely focused on the task in hand and are rewarded with some tasty treats at the end! However, try not to bake something too extravagant especially if you’re a newbie baker as this will most likely leave you feeling more stressed than relaxed!
Read a book
Reading is a great way to escape the pressures of everyday life. Whether you’re enjoying the latest fantasy novel, indulging in some romantic flirty fun or learning something new, books are guaranteed to give you some much needed escapism!
Unlike listening to music or watching TV, reading is completely consuming and requires us to actively engage with the story. Reading for just 20 minutes before bed is also known to increase relaxation, and reduce stressful, late-night thoughts, in turn helping you sleep better.
Catch up with friends
When was the last time you had a good old catch up with your besty?
Due to working unsociable hours it tends to be months sometimes before I can have a good catch up with my closest friends. However, we still try and schedule time each month to meet up for a meal and have a few drinks.
Being able to share experiences and problems with each other is a great way of releasing tension as well as bouncing ideas off one another. Having this support system can give you a sense of belonging, reduce stress, give emotional support and increase self esteem!
Even if current restrictions mean you can’t physically meet up with other people, you can still pick up the phone, FaceTime or even have a zoom night. Which ever way you do it, you’ll feel much better for doing so.
For most people having a self care Sunday means pampering yourself all day! As already discussed this isn’t necessary true, however indulging in some beauty treatments is still one of my favourite ways to enjoy some self care!
You can either buy some of your favourite beauty treatments or like me, make your own. Whatever you decide, turn your mobile on silent, play some chilled music, light a candle and indulge in whatever pampering your heart desires!
Do some exercise
Exercise is one of the best ways of reducing stress levels. When we exercise our brain releases endorphins that improve mood and reduce feelings of anxiety and depression.
Whatever you do is completely up to you?
If you’re someone who is already pretty active why not try out something different such as climbing or mountain biking. If you’re someone who doesn’t exercise regularly why not try out something gentle like yoga or walking?
Get out in nature
One of the best ways of reducing stress and feeling more invigorated is to get out in nature.
I find taking a walk in my local park really helps me disconnect from all the weeks stress and worries. I find the sunshine and fresh air clears my mind and lets me see things more clearly, helping me become more focused and often helping me see things in a totally new light.
For me personally I love making my own soap and bath bombs. I find it really takes my mind of things plus I get a great deal of satisfaction when my ideas turn out way better than expected!
Do you enjoy being creative? If so, use your self care Sunday to tackle your next creative project.
Have a Netflix day
If you’re actually feeling too exhausted to do anything at all then why not just stay in bed and binge watch your favourite films or TV shows. It’s not the most productive thing to be doing on your day off but we all need a lazy day once in a while!
Take a social media break
I think I can safely say most people are connected to some sort of social media these days. In fact, research suggests that the average person spends 153 minutes just on social media a day! However, this constant scrolling and checking notifications can also leave us feeling drained, uninspired and sometimes make us feel inadequate!
So for a few hours at least why not turn your phone on silent and reconnect with the real world instead.
Self care is extremely important for maintaining a healthy mind body and soul. When we look after ourselves we are more likely to make healthier choices which in turn help us maintain our own health and wellbeing.
Not everyone will be able to indulge in a whole day of self care but the important thing is to make time for ourselves as often as we can. Without self care, the daily stresses of life can become too much and eventually build up leading to an increased risk of burnout and stress related illnesses.
Can you afford not to look after yourself better?
Related: The best self care morning routine
Thanks for reading,