By Sarah Hunt, AZFB Communications Intern
Each day usually has some amount of stress in it for every one of us. That is why self-care is so important; if we don’t stop, relax, and take care of our mind and body’s needs for a few minutes, we won’t be able to continue doing the things we need to do. Here are some of my favorite ideas for self-care for you to try.
No, I don’t mean the kind you wear to the grocery store to stop the spread of COVID-19. These face masks either come in packages (sheet masks) or bottles (liquid masks). You can find them in the beauty section for a decent price at Walmart or Target, or you can order them in bulk on Amazon. Check what the package says, but usually these are worn for about 10 minutes. In the meantime, you can kick back and start an episode of your current show.
I always say, yoga is what you do when you’re either too cheap or don’t have time to get a massage. All that stress and tension building up in your muscles is not good, and will keep you feeling achy and sore unless you release that tension. Yoga is a great way to do that. My favorite yoga teacher on YouTube is Adriene from Yoga With Adriene. She has tons of videos varying in length and purposes; I highly recommend you try one out!
These are a great way to help you wind down after a long and stressful day; you should even be doing these in the middle of the day so your body doesn’t get too overwhelmed with everything you’re doing. These are especially helpful for people who have anxiety. A common breathing exercise is to inhale through the nose for four seconds, hold your breath for four seconds, and then exhale out of the mouth for four seconds. Repeat for up to five minutes. You can find more exercises to try here.
Drinking tea has many benefits, but for starters, when you drink something warm, it can help relax your body, and even help you sleep (as long as it’s caffeine free). Try this recipe for Citrus Honey Green Tea from Fill Your Plate.
Essential oils may sound like a bunch of bologna to some people, my previous self included. I have tried them in the past few years and have found some really do work for me. It may be different for each individual, but lavender does help me sleep, and peppermint can relieve headaches and stuffy noses. If you have muscle soreness and need a way to relieve that tension other than or in addition to yoga, try doTERRA Deep Blue Rub. You only need to apply a tiny amount for it to start working. It gives a slight cooling, then warming, sensation that undoes the knots in your muscles as you rub it in and even after that.
Spend Some Time With Your Pet
You don’t need to have a certified emotional support animal to feel the mental and physical benefits of having a pet. Just giving your pet cuddles and hugs can help relieve stress. It’s a bonus if your pet is athletic and likes to go on walks or hikes with you. Exercise is a great way to relieve stress, and pets can sometimes make it easier for you to get out of the house and get in your daily steps.
Find more ideas for healthy activities on Fill Your Plate’s blog!