I am someone who will always be by my friend’s side, running to help whenever they need me. This leaves me with little time for self-care. This semester has taught me an important lesson with all of this though. With no breaks or time off I found myself getting burnt out. Along with the no breaks, I found myself dealing with a lot of other people’s problems and trying to be there for them. It led to me crying to my mom over the Easter break about how I felt like I have run repeatedly into a wall all semester. While this feeling hasn’t completely gone away it did cause me to start doing more for myself. I learned to say no to friends when I didn’t have the time or energy. I also learned to wait for my closest friends to come to me with their problems instead of trying to help them before they have to ask for it.
I started doing more for myself and found time to do things I love. Here’s a list of things that I love to do for myself.
Anyone that knows me knows I love to paint my nails. Sometimes it will be a basic color and sometimes I will spend over an over doing nail art. I love letting my creativity out with my nails and it helps to give my mind something to focus on.
2. Running and other exercises
I love exercising, especially running. One way to care for myself both mentally and physically is to block off around 2 hours of the day to run or do other exercising. Although it doesn’t take me 2 hours, blocking off more than I need allows me to not stress about making it to my next event in time.
3. Painting Rocks
This is a fun activity in two ways. I can paint rocks with designs, cute sayings, or whatever the rock looks like. I then take the rocks and hide them on trails, pathways, or around Scranton. There is a Facebook page called Scranton Rocks where people will post pictures of the rocks they find. It’s a nice way to let my creativity out while sharing it with a community.
4. Watching a TV show
Another nice way to relax is to out on a TV show. I try to not put on a show that is intense and full of drama. One of my favorite self-care shows is Friends. I’ve seen it before, so nothing is surprising but is still makes me laugh and smile and is a nice way to take a 20-minute break when I’m stressed.
Around Easter I bought my first succulent and pretty soon after I bought two more and made nice terrariums for them. While there isn’t much I do now for them, it brightens up my room and makes me happy when I look at them.
Something else that makes me happy is to rearrange my room a little. Whether it is buying a new set of lights or just moving some decorations around or reorganizing my desk. It changes up my room and gives it a slightly new feel that helps me recenter myself.
I love to read and sometimes sitting down and reading for 30 minutes is an amazing way to relax. Finding a book, I read years ago or picking up a new one is still one of my favorite ways to relax.
8. Going for a walk
Breathing in some fresh air and seeing people walking around or being in nature is another great way to relax. Stretching my legs is also a bonus. It is nice to spend time out of my room.
Another way I love to de-stress is by writing. Sometimes I will write fiction but the most common way I write is to journal. I will write about my day and my feelings and it is a great way for me to process things.
10. Talking with a friend
Whether it is serious talk about feelings, sharing your day, or telling jokes, it is a great feeling to talk to friends. Enjoying time with friends is a great way to relax and recharge.
Some of these things might work for one person but have the complete opposite effect on another. There is no way of knowing what works for you until you try different ways to relax. Find what makes you happy and from there help yourself grow.