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Over the past few months, I have been working on my self-care. Self-care to me is allowing myself to improve by changing my daily habits to things that make me happy and energized. The biggest changes that I made are in how I spend my mornings. Getting up in the morning was hard for me because I wanted to lay in bed for hours scrolling on social media. Implementing these steps in my mornings allowed me to create a routine and help me get up and energized in the morning. Creating a routine for yourself is not only self-care, but self-improvement. This routine should not only include things that are healthy, but things that actually bring joy into your life. With the start of school, jobs, and all other extra activities, we oftentimes forget to think about ourselves. We get captivated by this fast-paced routine where we are running from errand to errand and forgetting about the little things that can really change our lives. Treating yourself to some of these habits may allow you to better yourself over time, and allow you to slow down and really appreciate the life that we have to live.

1. Treat yourself to your favorite drink

Usually, in the mornings I would sleep in and lounge around until I got hungry, then I would make a coffee. I recommend starting your morning by waking up early and treating yourself to your favorite drink. Every morning you can make or buy your favorite drink, whether that be coffee, matcha, tea, etc. My morning coffee is Target’s Good & Gather breakfast blend with creamer. I look forward to this drink and whatever breakfast I decide to make with it. The little things that we love, like coffee, can easily make our day better and make us happier. Just don’t forget to drink your water as well.

2. Work on skincare

Creating a skincare routine that you follow every day can allow you to stay consistent and improve your skin at the same time. If you already have a set skincare routine, try introducing tools like the gua sha, or jade rollers. These facial massaging tools can relieve tension on the face and inflammation. Teach yourself how to use these tools correctly though, so that your skin can actually benefit from them.

3. Workout

Working out can be intimidating to people because they are concerned about losing weight and looking a certain way. We should look at fitness as a way to help not only our physical health, but our mental health too. Setting aside time in your day, or even a few times a week, can allow us to release some stress in your life. Working out actually has a positive impact on depression, anxiety, and ADHD. It can help alleviate some of the worries in your life and make you feel happier. An added bonus is that extra boost of confidence you get from staying consistent and seeing good results. Working out does not always have to be a chore, so find something you like that’s fun. One of my favorite workouts is cycling class. I am not usually a fan of cardio, but when you find a class that you love, you look forward to it every day. So start with something fun, like a dance class, cycle, or step to start your workout journey.

4. Practice your favorite hobby

With all the things on our plate whether that be school, work, or extracurriculars finding time to dedicate to your hobbies is important. Setting aside time to indulge in your favorite hobby is very important. We get so wrapped up in the ongoing list of tasks we need to complete such as homework, jobs, or scholarships that we can forget to do things that we are passionate about. I really love art. I love to paint and draw but I can’t enjoy it when I have other things on my plate. So I complete the things I need to do so that I can do something I love. Setting this time aside to just paint and listen to music makes me happy and improves my day.

5. Clean/organize your room

Waking up in the morning to a clean room is one of the best feelings. Having clean sheets, good-smelling candles, and a well-organized closet are just some things that can easily make your room look better. Being in a clean organized space is good for your mental health as well. Having a clear space can clear your mind while having a more busy or chaotic one can make you anxious. You can start by making sure all your clothing is put away, then move to make sure your bed is made, and lastly buy some candles that you love. I personally love the fragrance plugs from bath and body works. You plug them into the wall and your room instantly smells wonderful.

6. Read

As a kid, it was easy to be reading all the time. In class, we would have stories read to us and then we would read some more on our own at home, but now it’s not so easy. Finding the time to sit down and read something that is not for school or an assignment can be really difficult. When you are reading you may feel like you’re wasting time but it’s important that we continue to read as much as we can. To make reading a habit buy a book that you actually want to read even if it’s a very easy read or a fiction book. Buy it and find the time in your day to read it. You can start by reading five pages a day, but start doing it every day and it will become easier.

7. Go outside

Starting school again, especially online can be a little isolating. It’s easy for us to get wrapped up with assignments and meetings and we forget to disconnect and just go outside. Especially in the colder months, we may catch ourselves staying in a lot more because it’s cold and grey but going outside is important to our bodies. We need vitamin D to improve our mood and immune system. So not only is it good for us mentally but also physically. Just going for a walk, gardening, walking your dog, maybe even going to a shopping mall outside can give you more energy.

8. Spend time with family and friends

Make plans to spend time with your family or friends during the day. Hanging out with the people you love is always a sure way to brighten your mood. You can create great memories out of the simplest of plans like going out to eat or just hanging out and seeing where the day takes you. Making sure that you appreciate the friends and family in your life is important and you should spend as much time with them as you can.

9. Allow yourself to make mistakes

On this self-care journey, it can be easy to forget to do some things or once in a while fall back into our old patterns. Make sure that you give yourself time to improve these areas of your life and don’t get mad at yourself for messing up. The whole goal of this journey is to improve yourself so that you can feel happier so do not be tough on yourself and just take it day by day.

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Maddie M

UTSA '25

Hey everyone! My name is Madylin and I am a freshman at UTSA :)
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