2020 is going to be epic. It’s an election year. An Olympic year. The start of a new decade. And the year that you become your fiercest advocate and finally commit to a sustainable self-care strategy. To help you stay motivated to follow through with your self-care plan from January to December, we’re providing 14 ways that you can focus on self-care in 2020. All our advice is proven, manageable, minimally time-consuming, and designed for optimal results so that you can not only make self-care your resolution for next year but for every year after that.
- Make a list of the things that make you happy. Review your list when you need a pick me up. Add to it, and find gratitude in it.
- Do at least three things every day that serve no other purpose than that they make you happy. These could be anything from enjoying a chocolate chip cookie to watching your favorite television show, to video chatting with your five-year-old niece whose giggle gives you all the feels.
- Keep a journal of every compliment someone gives to you. And believe every one fervently.
- Learn to meditate. There is no right or wrong way to meditate as long as you are spending a few minutes every day sitting quietly, focusing on your breathing, and calming your mind. A variety of meditation apps and books can help you get started.
- When you feel stress, identify the cause. It could be hormonal, or it could be a work deadline. An awareness of what is causing your anxiety is the first step to calming it.
- Check-in with yourself. Make sure you are asking yourself how you feel and be honest with your feedback. Are you feeling worried? Happy? Do the people you spend time with add value to your life? What or who depletes your energy? Does your job fulfill you? Be your own best friend, and dig deep.
- Ask for help when you need it, even when it’s hard to admit.
- Say no when you can’t commit to someone’s request—even if that person is your best friend, partner, child, or a family member.
- Do what’s been sitting on your to-do list for weeks (or months or years). Crossing it off will give you an overwhelming sense of accomplishment.
- Be mindful no matter what you’re doing—even if you’re mopping your floor, commuting, or jogging.
- Eat three healthy meals a day. When you fuel your body, you sustain your heart, mind, and soul.
- Don’t bottle your emotions. Holding on to negative feelings can conjure stress, depression, or even physical fatigue. Resolve inter-personal issues with proactive and constructive dialog.
- Spend an afternoon outdoors. Search for shapes in the clouds, watch waves crash into the shore, or listen for bird songs. Or just take a walk around the block. Relating to nature and getting some fresh air can calm a weary mind.
- Build an inspiring atmosphere. Decorate the spaces where you spend the most time to fuel gratitude, mindfulness, and feelings of calm. These areas should include your office, living room, bedroom, or kitchen. Decorate your walls with photos of loved ones, choose calming colors, and soothing fabrics. De-clutter your surroundings so that you can focus and minimize distractions.
2020 is going to be all about you—a new you, and the best you yet, but it’s going to take a commitment of time, effort, and mindfulness to achieve your goals. Self-care should not feel like a burden, time-commitment, or one more item to check off on your never-ending to-do list. On the contrary, it should be a few minutes every day that you look forward to the most, because they are the minutes in which you prioritize the most important person in your life—and that’s you.