As a Black woman sometimes it’s hard for us to remember the importance of taking care of ourselves. We’re always giving and taking care of everyone else that we forget about ourselves. Remember self care is an act of self preservation. Here are some tips to help you to take care of yourself as much as you take care of everyone else.
Evaluate your current level of self-care by looking at how often you drink water, eat healthy foods, and move your body. Don’t forget about your emotional and mental health either. Ask yourself how you handle stress. Do you keep going when you know you need to take a break? Do you express your feelings or do you hold everything inside? Do you turn to unhealthy coping strategies or do you reach out for help when you need it? Also remember to identify the people in your life who make your problems worse versus the people who listen to you without judgement?
Try to dedicate one day out of the week as “self-care day.” Saturdays and Sundays usually work best but any day where you can take care of yourself is fine. If you can’t dedicate the entire day to self care, dedicate a few hours.
Make a list of all of the things that feed your spirit and put it in your calendar to do them at least once per month.
Schedule joy breaks throughout your day. Try practicing deep breathing for 2 minutes, listen to a guided meditation for 5 minutes, color in an adult coloring book or dance to your favorite songs.
Learn to say No. Make it a priority to say “no” to requests to your time, energy and resources twice as much as you say yes.
Remember you can’t pour from an empty cup and we need breaks too.