Self-care is one of the most important things that we can do. In a modern world where we are working stressful jobs for 40 hours a week, getting less than six to eight hours of rest on any given night, downing huge cups of coffee to stay up in the morning, eating unhealthy takeout for lunch, and still having to cook dinner when you get home from work at night. Add on happy hours, coworker drama, balancing marriage, parenting, and social life on top of everything, and you are in desperate need of mental detox. Unfortunately, you cannot always take a spontaneous trip to the spa. Due to schedule and finances, going to get massages might be out of the question. Whether you are home with the kids or just staying in, check out this list of ways that you can mentally detox from home:
Get Some Rest
The easiest way to practice self-care is just to get some rest. Getting six to ten hours of rest is essential for our physical and mental health. Sleeping in on a weekend isn’t that hard. But what about on a weekday when you have to balance family, cooking dinner, cleaning up, and any primetime television shows that you might want to catch up on? And on top of that, people who have mental health problems, such as anxiety and depression would have an especially hard time falling asleep on time. Maintain great sleep hygiene by:
- Enforcing bedtime for your children (getting adequate sleep matters even more for children than adults)
- Meal prep to prevent having to cook for the entire week
- Eat 1-2 hours before going to bed
- Removing all phones and other forms of screen time from the bed
- Practice mindfulness and meditation before going to sleep
Following this advice would help you have a long sleep every night so that you feel better rested before going to work in the morning.
Cooking Healthy Food
Large coffee and bagel and cream cheese. Takeout for lunch. Work snacks. Happy Hour. Dinner with Friends. Sunday Brunch. What do all of these have in common? They are all not the healthiest options for you. Junk food isn’t just bad for your midsection. According to Science Daily, junk food has a direct effect on your mental health. Brighten up your mood by eating a healthier diet. Steps you can take to improve your diet is:
- Replacing your daily coffee and bagel with a green smoothie
- Meal prepping lunch to take to work
- Cooking healthy recipes when you are at home
Delish has a lot of fun healthy recipes for you to cook at home. Eating a diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables not only helps you lose weight or clears up your skin. It is also chock full of vitamins and minerals that actively detox the body. Therefore, eating a healthy diet every single day will transform your mental health tremendously.
Take A Dip
If you are lucky, you would have a pool or a hot tub in your house so that you can relax anytime you want. But if like most people, you don’t have that luxury, your bathtub can be the perfect place for self-care. Warm up the water, use an all-natural bubble bath, and take a soak. Bubble baths with lavender as the main ingredient Relaxing in the bathtub releases tension in the body in places that experience the most stress, such as the back, joints, and ankles. Set the scene by dimming the lights, lighting some candles near the bathtub, and blasting your music playlist, or at least some relaxing music to set the mood for self-healing. After you leave the bathtub, you will feel like the stress has been lifted off your body.
When you cannot attend your evening or weekend yoga class, just do your yoga class at home. If you are a yogi, practicing your craft at home comes naturally. Yoga is a no-brainer to practice self-care since it is a moderate exercise that helps stretch your body. But if you are a beginner, you might need to use resources such as Yoga with Adriene and YouTube to find free yoga classes on the internet so that you can become a pro. If you have kids who would like to join your yoga sessions as well, you can find Mommy and Me Yoga resources on YouTube. This is a great way for you and your kids to bond and to simultaneously relieve stress together.
Yoga and meditation go hand in hand. But meditation is a little bit less trendy than yoga. Meditation is a practice where you sit in a comfortable position (criss-cross apple sauce with your hands to your chest or outstretched and your back straight) and you practice deep breathing and thinking about positive thoughts. You can go on Mindful or Pure Gym to find free meditation apps that can help you practice mindfulness from home. Turn to YouTube to find relaxing music to play while you meditate.
Buy A Self-Care Kit to Use At Home
When practicing self-care at home, there are so many options that it is hard to know where to start. End the search by purchasing a self-care kit. My absolute favorite self-care kit is the Black Girl Magic Box. Earlier, I created a review on the Black Girl Magic Box, where I reviewed some of the self-care items that were included in the first-ever Black Girl Magic Box, including affirmations, notepads, a lip scrub, incense, a feminine wash, and a foot soak, all of which were excellent in promoting self-care. Black Girl Magic Box is currently having a deal where you can get it for 25% off with the code SISTERHOOD due to the coronavirus pandemic until May 7th! Go on BlackGirlMagicBox.com to get your box today!
Just playing your favorite songs can boost your mood. Singing is great for your mood and boosts positive endorphins, according to Science Daily. But if your favorite songs are more moody and emotional, it might not be great for practicing self-care. If so, you can find playlists on YouTube and Spotify that have happy, upbeat songs that put you in a good mood. You can also find music that is great for exercising or calm music that is great for meditation and yoga.
There doesn’t have to be a power outage or an anniversary for you to light candles. Lighting candles can also help to create a calmer environment in your house. Bath and Body Works have great candles for clearing your mind. My favorite options are their Stress Relief candles with Eucalyptus and Spearmint and Eucalyptus Tea, their Relax candles with Black Chamomile and Lavender and Cedarwood, and their Comfort candle. These candles not only smell delicious but they also help you to unwind and boost your mood.
Practice A Hobby
When you are trying to balance work, school, kids, marriage, a workout routine, and social life, you need to do something that you have passion in. I love to write, so when I have time during the weekends, I like to take the time to work on this blog or write short stories or work on a novel. I know that you have the one thing in your life that you would do in life even if you got paid absolutely nothing (and no, it can’t be sleeping or eating!) If you can’t think of one, there are so many fun hobbies to try, even if you have a tried and true, such as:
- Knitting, sewing, and crocheting
- Writing poetry or prose
- Read a good book
- Drawing pictures
- Adult coloring books
- Doing puzzles
- Doing Sudoku
- Playing Solitaire
- And so much more!
So many hardworking people develop midlife crises because they do not create a balance from their home, work, and social life. Develop a hobby to keep you busy and to maintain a purpose in your life.
When you experience a lot of stress, it is good to have an outlet otherwise than your family or friends. An alternative to attending therapy sessions, or something that your therapist would suggest, is to journal. According to Positive Psychology, journaling has great effects on people with depression, anxiety, and stress. The great thing about journaling is that it is a self-care method that is easy to do and does not take a lot of time out of your day. Just journaling 10 minutes a day is essential for self-care. And after you finish all the pages in our journal, you have an entire book of experiences to look back on!
Get or Give A Massage
Getting a full body massage from the spa causes you to feel brand new. But if you don’t have the money or the time to head to the local spa, then there are other alternatives to get a massage. For example, if you are lucky enough to live with your partner, then you have someone who can give you a massage. Getting and giving massages is a great way to bond with your partner and an excellent way to destress. Even if you two are not the best at giving massages, you can direct each other about which touches feel good and which places need more or less pressure. Otherwise then you can give yourself a massage. Full body massages are not the only types of massages that you can do. You can massage yourself in many places, including your scalp, hands, feet, shoulders, and lower back. You can also purchase a hand massager so that you can reach those spots easier. Breo iPalm520 Shiatsu Hand Massager is a great massager that you can get on Amazon.
As humans, we need to get enough Vitamin D. According to Science Daily, going outside is great for our physical and mental health. So sometimes cracking open a window isn’t going to do everything for your health. If you have a porch or a backyard, this is the perfect way to get fresh air. Just relaxing in a lawn chair on your front or backyard and getting fresh air feels amazing. There is a lot to do in your yard, such as:
- And so much more!
Give Yourself A Facial
Facials are another popular treatment to get on the spa menu otherwise than massages. Facials are great because they make your pores feel super clean. When you are not able to get your facial done at the spa, you can easily do this spa treatment at home. My favorite facial masks are made from all-natural products such as a mixture of bentonite clay and apple cider vinegar. You can add cucumbers to your eyes to create a cooling sensation and prevent eye bags. Getting a face steamer is essential to feel that cooling sensation that you get at the spa. Zorra 4 in 1 Nano Ionic Large Facial Steamer and Facial Humidifier is a best seller on Amazon at an affordable price.
Get Ear Seeds
Acupuncture is a great treatment to help heal the body of various ailments. Along with seeking medical treatment, many people choose to go to an acupuncturist to get treatment. But many are skeptical about acupuncture since regular acupuncture visits can add up and are often not covered by insurance. Also, acupuncture is an invasive treatment, so people who are afraid of needles, like me, can shy away from it. Ear seeds are a great alternative to traditional acupuncture since it uses the pressure points in your ear that are used in ear acupuncture. Instead of placing needles in your ears, these seeds are made from sterling silver, 24K gold, and are placed on the pressure points of your ears. You massage these seeds on your ears every hour for thirty seconds so that you can get benefits in the areas that the pressure points benefit. I have tried ear seeds when I attended the PopSugar Chalet event in November and they were great for my health. You can purchase ear seeds on Amazon here.
Did you ever hear the saying “Laughter is the best medicine”? Maybe the person who created the saying meant it more literally than metaphorically. According to the National Institute of Health, laughter has a positive effect on health and can even help the people who are the most immunocompromised, such as cancer patients. Just 10 to 15 minutes of laughter a day can help to heal physical and mental health ailments. You can get more laughter through your day by:
- Watching comedies and romantic comedies on Netflix
- Talking to a friend or partner over the phone
- Catching up on memes on social media
- Spending quality time with family
- And so much more!
Out of all of these methods, laughter is the easiest thing to do and the most healing thing on this list in the long run! Even if others make it seem like you are not being productive, remind them that you are getting your daily dose of laughter, which is one of the best forms of medicine.
Thank you for reading this article. I hope that you are able to apply one (or three!) of these healing activities to your schedule. What are some of your favorite self-care activities to do at home? Tell me about it in the comments!
Talk to you soon!