5 Tips for Practicing Self-Care

This fall, I’ll be entering into my junior year at the University of Utah. As I reflect over my past two years at the U, there are some practices I wish I had implemented sooner. From figuring out what a manageable class schedule looks like to resisting the draw of on-campus coffee shops, the past two years have been full of growth. One area, however, that I am still working on is practicing more self-care. While it can be simple to think, “Go do a facemask,” or “Meditate for 10 minutes everyday,” I know that I have often struggled to make self-care into a regular habit. So, here are some of my tricks for implementing self-care, no matter how easy it may be to focus on your own busy schedule.

  1. 1. Create a daily routine

    When beginning to implement self-care into your life, it’s important to have small moments everyday that you can to look forward to. Whether it’s going to the gym, listening to music on the way to class, having a skin care routine, or even journaling for a few minutes, taking the time to step back everyday (if even just for a short period of time) can help promote a better routine of self-care.

  2. 2. Plan events to look forward to

    With crazy school and work schedules, it can be easy to get bogged down by life’s everyday tasks. But, if you plan trips, buy tickets for an event in the future, or just plan a night out with friends, you’ll have another motivating factor to get you through taking challenging classes.

  3. 3. Don’t sweat the small stuff

    As easy as it is to freak out over a difficult assignment or a bad day at work, it is also equally important to keep things in perspective. While you should give yourself time to work through something and process your emotional well-being, it’s also necessary to think about events in the grand scheme of things. As annoying as it can be to hear, ask yourself the question: Will it matter in five hours, five days, or five years? 

  4. 4. Take breaks when studying

    For me, when I get started on work, I tend to focus and obsess on something until I’ve gotten a certain amount of work done, and then I’ll reward myself with a break. At times, this way of working can be motivating, but other days, I’ll find myself stuck in a rut until I give in and take a break. I have been working on this practice, however, and I have been slowly learning to check in with myself and take breaks when I need them. There have been times that I have avoided eating dinner until after I’ve finished writing an essay at 3 am, but I’ve learned to (and I’m still working on) spacing out my work with frequent breaks. 

  5. 5. Find ways to reward yourself

    Yes, Parks and Rec was right, you should “treat yo’ self!” Even if it’s a small reward for checking off items from your to-do list, some positive reinforcement can help you stay motivated and on track!

Self-care is all about finding a balance between your responsibilities and taking care of yourself, so use these tips to have a successful semester! 

 

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