Why is self-care important for your wellbeing?
The Self-Care forum defines it as “The actions that individuals take for themselves, on behalf of and with others to develop, protect, maintain and improve their health, well-being or wellness.”
It’s a great life skill that can support you while studying because proactively looking after yourself can only be a good thing for your physical and mental health.
As the saying goes, “You can’t pour from an empty cup”, meaning none of us can work well when we are running on empty. Therefore, it is important to include some self-care practices into your daily schedule that will allow you to recharge your batteries.
The health and wellness benefits derived from self-care can undoubtedly go a long way in supporting you and your well-being whilst you study. So, what are some of these benefits?
Practicing it can:
- Reduce stress and anxiety
- Encourage relaxation
- Improve and encourage a good night sleep
- Improve physical fitness
- Reduce sense of stress and overwhelm
Exercises come in all different shapes and sizes, you can choose what works best for you. Below you will find a list of other activities and exercises designed around self-care that you may wish to try.
Mental Self-Care includes exercises such as mindfulness, reading a book, trying out a new hobby, listening to music.
Physical Self-Care includes walking, running, cycling, walking the dog, eating nutritious foods in a healthy way, keeping hydrated and good sleep hygiene.
Spiritual Self-Care is anything that helps you connect with your inner self. It doesn’t have to be religious but can be if this works for you. Activities include spending time in nature, meditating, daily acts of kindness for others and self, etc.
Emotional Self-Care involves activities that can support you in connecting with your emotions and healthily processing them. Exercises such as keeping a journal, meditation, daily gratitude, and talk therapy are all great forms of emotional self-care.
Social Self-Care is all about connecting with others, and whether we are extroverts or introverts as humans, we all need to connect with others one way or another. Examples of social self-care activities include meeting up with friends, having a phone call with a family member, cuddling up to your partner, enjoying some time with a pet, zoom calls, etc.
Self-care does not need to be complicated, and it also does not need to take up a lot of time in your day. This is why it can play an essential role in supporting you manage your studies. Start small and work from there, finding what works for you.