Self-care is paramount to our well-being. When recharging ourselves isn't a priority; it affects our growth and our ability to help others. Focusing on self-care will increase our emotional intelligence.
So many of us forget to take care of our most valuable resource – ourselves. When that happens, we put the quality of our life and those around us a risk. Through my work in emotional intelligence, I've learned when we focus on our self-care, we increase our interpersonal success, strengthen our emotional intelligence, and build resilience.
Self-care is not a selfish act! It's about preserving your physical, emotional, and mental health, which is essential, especially in challenging times like during COVID-19. We need to be strong to contend with the impact of stress. When we engage in daily self-care, our brain recharges and responds positively, assisting us with our daily challenges.
Start Your Day Right
How we begin our day can affect our well-being for 24 hours. I recommend starting each day by waking up a minimal of 15 minutes before you need to. This extra time provides you with the opportunity to start your day calmy before beginning your morning routine. Begin by slowly taking five deep breaths and stretching from head to toe before getting out of bed.
Calmly visualize your day, thinking of the activities you're looking forward to doing. If there is nothing that excites you, consider adding in a coffee break or lunch date with someone who puts a smile on your face. This practice is an excellent way to commence your day positively.
It's All About Balance
Balancing your day with work and relaxation enhances your health, nutrition, fitness, and overall wellness. Find ways to include these elements into your daily routine wherever possible. Schedule time for yourself, with close friends and colleagues, to achieve these necessary benefits to attain the balance you require. Remember, we're all unique, and therefore our needs will be different. And that's okay! Comparing ourselves to others is when it comes to self-care is detrimental to our well-being.
Ways to Recharge Physically, Emotionally, and Mentally
When we recharge physically, emotionally, and mentally we enhance our self-care and give ourselves and those around us a gift the keeps on giving.
Tyler Ouwendyk, Owner, Momentum Fitness, recommends these five strategies to assist in recharging physically, emotionally, and mentally:
- Engaging in regular physical activity helps you sleep better, increase your energy, gain focus, boost your mood, and contribute to overall happiness and well-being.
- Focusing on proper sleep hygiene is a huge contributor to overall health, both short term and long term. Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep each night and make sure your room is cool and dark. Most importantly, do your best to set a consistent bedtime and wake up time.
- Dial-in your nutrition with the 80/20 rule! Where 80% of what you eat is nutritious, whole foods to ensure you are fueling your body with adequate nutrients to function optimally and feel our best. And 20% of what you eat is fun, likely more processed foods, allowing you to enjoy some dinner parties with friends or a quiet date night with your partner, both of which can be integral pieces to recharging, as well as your overall happiness and health.
- Dive into a hobby! Some examples are going for a walk, bike ride, reading, knitting, gardening, building or working on small projects, joining a recreational sports team, yoga, meditation, or even watching tv. The options are endless, so to make it specific to you, ask yourself these questions: What hobbies or activities do you enjoy? Which of these help you relax and unwind? And which of these bring you happiness and joy?
- Set clear boundaries between work and life. This one is my favourite and one of the most challenging practices. We're in the midst of a wild 2020; many of us are working from home due to COVID-19, so work life and home life have quickly gelled into one. We also live in an age where we receive every single work call, message, and email in an instant and right at our fingertips. Plus, if you work for an employer, they are probably asking you to do more and more, which spills past your 8 hour day. And if you work for yourself, well, you already know all the hats you need to wear. I recommend making your calendar your best friend. Schedule strict times for work, exercise, hobbies, family time, meal prep, and bedtime
Tyler's excellent recommendations support the flow of natural systems to help our body and mind to recharge. This recharge leads to improved self-management, a critical emotional intelligence personal competency that affects our well-being.
Keep in mind; your well-being benefits everyone – self-care is a priority. Remember, we believe the story that we tell ourselves each day! Marshall Connects offers Emotional Intelligence Assessments and Coaching to enhance skill development in all areas, including self-management techniques like self-care.
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