The best thing you can do for yourself and your family is to practice self-care. Apply these 10 activities for self-care on a budget to create balance and well-being in your body and soul.
What do you think of when you hear Self-Care? Do you hear the word selfish? Lots of people get the wrong idea about self-care. They think they have to be deserving of it.
You might feel like it’s splurging to do something good for yourself. It can seem extravagant. I’d like to change that mindset today. Self-care is something you deserve.
Self-Care Doesn’t Have To Cost Anything
We often feel pressured to be productive all the time. Being busy is a sign of worth and accomplishment. However, it really doesn’t have to be that way. Just kicking back and doing nothing is important to recharging our batteries.
Let yourself have some downtime to do something frivolous like binge on your favorite Netflix show, take a nap or just sit and pet your cat. You deserve it.
A change of scenery can be a wonderful source of renewal, and it doesn’t have to cost a lot. Just heading out to walk in your neighborhood might help when you’re feeling stir-crazy in your home. If you’re able to afford it, a low-cost staycation to a nearby location for a day or two is a fun way to switch things up. You’ll be surprised what this change of perspective can do for you.
In Matthew 11:28 in the NIV it says: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
What is Self-Care?
We touched on the fact that many people feel guilty for spending time and resources on self-care. There are a lot of complex reasons for this within our society. Despite what anyone else may say, you deserve to focus on your own needs.
It’s good for those you love when you take care of yourself. You truly can’t fill another’s cup if your own is empty. So, I’d like to take this opportunity to emphasize why you shouldn’t feel guilty for practicing self-care and encourage you to do so in every area of your life.
It’s Not Selfish
First, you must understand that taking time to care for yourself is not selfish in any way. It may be hard to get past the mindset that the needs of others are more important than your own, but overcoming this mindset is essential to allowing yourself to adequately meet your own needs. Care isn’t a zero-sum concept. When you care for yourself, it doesn’t have to mean you don’t care about others.
Self-care isn’t a luxury; it’s a necessity. It is like the airplane air mask comparison. You have to ensure you can breathe before you can help those around you. If you’re tired, rundown, and overwhelmed all the time, you truly cannot give your best self to others. You also can’t offer yourself the very best. Remember that self-care isn’t selfish.
It Sets a Good Example
If you’re a parent, investing in self-care is not only good for you, it sets a good example for your kids. Even if you don’t have children, taking the time to care for yourself might be inspiring or motivational for those around you. In order for a stigma to end, it has to be normalized. When more of us let the world around us know why self-care matters, they may begin to change their minds about the concept, as well.
It Demands Respect
It also sets a precedent for how you expect others to treat you. When you demonstrate that you value yourself and that you find it worth investing time in yourself, they will respond in kind. Learning to say no and set boundaries is good for your relationships. It teaches others how you expect to be treated and makes it clear that you see yourself as a priority. You shouldn’t feel guilty about that.
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Activities For Self Care on a Budget
1. Breathing Exercises
When you can’t do anything else, it’s ok to stop and breathe and take a time out. Sometimes just a little bit of alone time is all you need to feel rejuvenated. So why not give yourself a time-out? Lock yourself in your room with a nice cup of tea. Listen to some quiet music. Practice some quiet breathing exercises. It’s a luxury we all can afford.
2. Daily Affirmations Checklist
Get the daily affirmations below to have with you. Hang in your bathroom, bring them to work, and put them in your journal. Self Talk is great for your brain. Say them out loud daily or even a few times a day.
3. Take 5 minutes and write a love letter.
Sounds crazy right? I am going to write a love letter to myself. I am overwhelmed, stressed, full of anxiety, and just plain old tired.
You can keep a journal near bye to write in and write a letter to yourself. You can talk to yourself and get out your feelings, but it has to end up as a love letter sharing your special qualities and mostly letting yourself know you are loved.
You can also write a letter to someone in your family or a special friend or mentor in your life. This little exercise can be a life-changer.
Write in Your Journal
Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer, journaling can be a very therapeutic activity. Jotting down what you’re grateful for has been proven to be beneficial to well-being. It can also be energizing to simply do a brain dump in which you write down all the things that are floating around in your head.
Jotting down dreams for the future might inspire and motivate you to take action. Give it a try.
4. Watch a comedy or funny movie
It is o.k. to take a timeout. You deserve it. Set a time limit of 30 minutes up to 2 hours. I would only watch a movie once a week, or you can do it at night when your commitments are done. I do this every evening right before bed. I watch a comedy show. It sets the mood for a good sleep.
5. Use Essential Oils and Create a Spa Night
I have been using essential oils for years. I keep many oils in my bathroom, but I also keep a few by the bed. For Christmas last year, my husband bought me a diffuser. At night I set it up with a calming oil blend and I put it on the timer for an hour.
Set up your bathroom with some candles, bath balms, and a face mask. Put on some quiet music or an audiobook. Spend at least 30 minutes alone and focus on just you.
6. Create a Dream Board or Vision Board
I recommend you get a poster board and a few magazines or just start printing off images from the computer of things you love and want in your life. Another idea is to make a secret board on Pinterest. Although I think having a physical board to look at is more inspirational.
7. Get outside and move
Getting outside and getting some vitamin D and breathing some fresh air may make all the difference. You can take a short walk or do some gardening. One thing I like to do is get my camera out and start taking pictures. You can try to capture nature with birds, flora, and fauna and enjoy living things.
Pick up the phone and call a friend you haven’t talked to in a while. Meeting up with them in person for a walk together or a cup of coffee is even better. Connecting to others might just provide the spark you’ve been missing.
8. Get Audiobooks from Overdrive App
This app lets you rent audiobooks from your public library. I love to read but don’t have enough time in the day to sit and it hurts my eyes after a while. I love to listen to things on audio, like podcasts, and audiobooks.
Since this article is about self-care on a budget, why not save money on your audiobooks? You will need to make sure your library is listed on the app. Then search for the audiobooks you want. You will add your library card to the app so they can find and rent the book to your card.
9. Do a Body Detox
When your body is full of toxins, it doesn’t operate at its best capacity. The best thing you can do is on occasion do a detox. There are many ways you can do this, from drinking detox smoothies to buying products online for detoxes.
I also like to drink water with a teaspoon or two of apple cider vinegar every day. It gets your body in an alkaline state which is healthier than the acidic state from our poor food choices and toxins in the air. If you don’t like apple cider vinegar you can add lemon juice or grapefruit essential oil.
10. Do a Digital or Electronic Detox
We are so used to having our phones in our hands, laptops, and IPads open and available that we don’t even realize how much time we are spending there. Decide to take a 7-day break from it. If your business is run online, then limit any personal use from it. You will feel better in no time.
Coloring can be very soothing and relaxing. It requires focus which takes your mind off other stressful thoughts. It has become very popular in the last few years and many therapists now suggest it as a way of self-soothing. There are some scripture coloring pages in our shop.