christine alexis virgins of the screen.

Are you taking care of yourself? Could you take better care of yourself?

From you to... you? - 50 Ways to Practice Self-care

As I continue to do a deep dive into applied compassion, I thought it would be good to have a master list of things anyone can do to practice self-care and love. When we take care of ourselves, we’re better able to care for others.

Here are 50 things you can do for more self-love and care (which have additional benefits). Not all will speak to every person – it depends on your temperament and situation. However, I made this list of things to be as doable for as many people as possible. For that reason, these are mostly low or no cost options and many require little time commitment. There are a few activities on the list that are more expensive, however because of their potential benefits, I felt it was good to list them. That said, there is something for everyone to do on this list – no matter what your situation!

50 Ways to Practice Self-care

  1. Read a book. Pick up one of the intentional Writers‘ books, or just go grab something you’ve been meaning to read. Books build empathy AND it’s a way to have “you time.”

  2. Go to an art gallery. Art builds empathy, it’s beautiful, and plus, you may find something awesome to put in your house (which is good for you and the artist!). Bonus points for taking friends with you!

  3. Go for a walk in a park or around your neighborhood.

  4. Take a bubble bath.

  5. Play your favorite music. Turn it up. Bonus points: dancing around the room and singing along.

  6. Treat yourself to a coffee. Make it as fancy or simple as you like!

  7. Freewrite in your journal – this is where you write about anything and everything that comes into your head for as long as you want. Usually 5 – 10 minutes is good, and you may have some serious release of emotions/stress from this!

  8. Take a nap.

  9. Pet a fluffy thing like a cat or dog.

  10. Play with a child. Children are hilarious and spending time with them can be a real joy!

  11. Go to a comedy show (or watch one on TV).

  12. Watch a movie. Pick a genre that you really enjoy (and remember to practice media analysis to help maintain balance if the themes are darker!).

  13. Surround yourself with nature. This has been shown to decrease stress (especially for women) which has many benefits (increased mental, emotional, and physical wellness). Alone this can be a meditation, with others, it can be a source of joy and connection!

  14. Play a board game. This is a great way to be social, but doesn’t require a lot of effort to make happen (just call a couple of friends and put your game on the table!). Bonus points if it’s something that makes you laugh (like Apples to Apples or Balderdash).

  15. Declutter your environment. This seems like a weird thing to put on a self-love list, but if you’re living in a messy environment, it can impact your mood. Spending a little time putting your things in order can feel satisfying and refreshing (plus it builds your worthiness story!).

  16. Give yourself a spa experience – either at home or at a professional spa. This could mean a body scrub, manicure, pedicure, deep conditioning, body brushing – whatever speaks to you.

  17. Go wine-tasting (or beer tasting – or any kind of tasting!).

  18. Buy yourself flowers.

  19. Make a list of all the things that are wonderful in your life.

  20. Make a vision board.

  21. Eat something that gives you joy.

  22. Workout.

  23. Paint or draw a picture.

  24. Garden.

  25. Go to a festival.

  26. Go to a museum.

  27. Meditate.

  28. Go birdwatching.

  29. Go to a lake or ocean and swim, boat, or just sit and enjoy it!

  30. Go to a live concert of your favorite band.

  31. See a play.

  32. See a dance performance.

  33. Take yourself out to breakfast, lunch, and or dinner!

  34. Take a class that teaches something you always wanted to learn (like this one!).

  35. Volunteer. This sounds strange on a list for self-care and love, but volunteering has a lot of mental and emotional benefits for the volunteer. It fulfills the basic need to contribute as well as belong.

  36. Reconnect with a friend or family member.

  37. Plan your meals.

  38. Go to church or temple. This is another one that people may think is weird, but if you don’t take care of every aspect of yourself, it can have negative consequences for the self. Spiritual care is important, and a community of faith is built to address that need.

  39. Buy yourself some clothes. Sometimes you need to replace things because they no longer fit, make your uncomfortable, or just don’t bring joy. Buying a shirt that fits perfectly and makes you feel amazing is better than a closet full of shirts you dislike.

  40. When someone or something makes you feel awful, walk away. Give yourself some time away from the situation to figure out where the emotion comes from, and how you can transform the situation.

  41. Get yourself toiletries that make you feel amazing. This can be something salon-like if that’s what draws you, or it could be DIY natural care products (like what I do).

  42. Go on vacation some place you’ve always wanted to go (but never gave yourself permission).

  43. Have a staycation and explore local awesomeness!

  44. Replace or just get rid of everything that no longer serves you or brings you joy. This is an aspect of decluttering, and will impact your mood for the better.

  45. Get yourself a sleep mask and some ear plugs to create a more sleep-conducive environment.

  46. Drink the recommended daily intake of water.

  47. Practice self-forgiveness.

  48. Get a new job. If your job makes you feel like poop, cry on a regular basis, or having other negative impacts on your health, getting a new job can be an amazing exercise in self-love.

  49. Pace yourself – don’t overwhelm yourself, but don’t sit around doing nothing. When you maintain a balance of activity, it promotes wellness in every aspect of your life.

  50. When you start to feel negatively, take a breath and get some perspective on your experience.

What are you going to do today to take care of yourself? Let me recommend a serious investment in your self-care – The Heart Unboxed: How to Love the Unloveable course which helps you foster a loving heart and mind to better love yourself and others! The course is based on the process I used to completely transform my life (and you can too!). Enroll here!

From you to… you?
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