It never truly clicked for me until my junior year of college: My self-care tactic can't simply be slapping on a face mask and posting a picture of it on social media with the caption "self-care!". While yes, my face glowed, I was still tired, stressed, and insecure. This is when I decided to start figuring out the best ways to take care of myself, mind, body, and soul. Here are some of the things that have worked for me so far:
1. Skin Care
I know I just bagged on throwing on a face mask. This is because I found that there's so much more to taking care of my skin then a sheet mask from Ulta. Yes, face masks are still part of my routine, but I have added so much more to it. From calming lavender lotions to under eye creams, I have started trying to figure out the best way to take care of my skin by listening to it. As my combination skin gets drier or more oily with the stress I endure, I have started learning how to take the best care of my skin possible and I have started feeling better for it.
At first, I was pretty skeptical about meditation. The idea of sitting for ten to twenty minutes and doing (what I thought was) nothing actually stressed me out a lot more then it did calm me down. I steered clear of meditating for years until I finally gave in a tried it. The difference it made to spend ten minutes of my day at the end of it sitting up and listening to the sounds of nature was just unbelievable. Meditation (like other forms of self-care) may not be for everyone. But, I have found it to help me process the stress of the day whether it be college, money, work, or life in general. I have been calmer, happier, and better under pressure since I have started meditating. It's a true night and day difference.
There's this ridiculous stigma around going to therapy. It probably ties in with this idea that even I have had for years that asking for help from anyone made me look weak. At first, I wasn't keen on the idea of going to therapy of my own accord. But, once I finally did, I found it extremely helpful. Of course, the importance of finding the therapist that works for you should not ever be overlooked. Once the right fit falls in, most people have found it to be extremely helpful.
Means of self-care are specific to each person (obviously). Finding what works for you is the most important part. The best thing I have done for myself is listening to my body and understanding what I need. This is the best form of self-care I have started doing.