We often use the expression, “Please take care of yourself” or “Look after yourself” as a goodbye greeting. But barely a handful of people do take that seriously and implement that in their daily lives. Self-care is as important as taking care of your loved ones. But what exactly does self-care mean?
It simply means acknowledging the relationship we have with ourselves, maintaining a healthy mental and physical balance and prioritizing it. Taking essential steps and putting in intentional effort for yourself does not mean you’re choosing yourself over your loved ones. It only means that you are mindful about your health and need to be able to support the ones you care about.
Self-care can be practiced in several ways, you don’t necessarily need to have an elaborative plan. It is as basic as taking time out for yourself in a day, reflecting on your thoughts and feelings, maintaining a healthy physical and mental balance and if needed, even calling yourself out on the things that are harming you and that need to be changed.
Your mental and physical health functions hand-in-hand which is why any inconvenience caused to either is reflected on the other aspect. Our life is dynamic and so are the dimensions of wellness. Hence, it is important to engage in self-care in the ways best suitable for you. In terms of mental health, it may help in reducing/ managing stress, relieve the pressures of everyday life, eliminate anxiety, depression and negative thoughts, improve concentration and focus, channelize your energy and thoughts, and better anger management. From a physical health focus, self-care is clinically proven to reduce the risk of heart diseases, cancer and stroke.
Predominantly, people with Kapha dosha Body Type are inactive, unenergetic and have very low motivation levels in life that aggravate with time. To maintain mental and physical health balance and attain spiritual wellness, Dharana at Shillim proposes to practice a Kapha pacifying Dinacharya- a daily routine that will aid in balancing these characteristics as this automates some of the most important self-care practices. This is mainly divided into 3 Kapha routines- morning, mid-day and evening. Ayurveda says that people with Kapha dominant dosha need to practice several hours of commitment by consistently following the daily routine for chores, sleeping, eating, workout, eventually bringing in proper time management and discipline and experiencing spontaneity in life.
Also, here are a few simple ways you can practice self-care by yourself to better your mental and physical health.
Ways to Practice Self-Care for better Mental Health:
- Do not bottle up your thoughts or feelings- Rather write it in a journal, talk to a friend, read a book, listen to your favourite music, take a nap, play with your pets, take a walk by yourself to gather the pain points and acknowledge your feelings or cuddle. If need be, even cry it out! Crying is highly therapeutic and shall end up feeling way better after, learn when you need to reach out to someone for help
- Socialize- Meet up with your friends or loved ones regularly. Revive your contacts with old friends, reminisce old memories, share a laugh with your friends or volunteer
- Spiritual check– Meditate, practice yoga, breathing and relaxation exercises
- Get enough sleep- A minimum of 6-8 hours of sleep is generally required for our body to function properly
Ways to Practice Self-Care for better Physical Health:
- Exercise regularly- A quick 15 min dance/ Zumba routine, quick run or a light jog, work-out or stretching sessions can help brighten your mood as your body releases endorphins, stress-reducing hormones and boosts overall mental and physical health
- A healthy, balanced diet- Avoid the consumption of processed, packed/ canned foods as it contains too low in nutrients and high in calories. Rather opt for healthy alternatives like fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh juices, etc. Reduce caffeine, excess sugar, aerated drinks and alcohol intake. Include foods that are dense in nutrients like nuts, dry fruits, green leafy vegetables, etc.
- Drink enough water– Ensure to drink water at regular intervals and stay hydrated
Our body and mind share a unique connection which is why we don’t feel great or in high spirits when one of the aspects is not working well. Dharana Wellness Centre, a wellness retreat near Mumbai and Pune focuses on spiritual wellness and a holistic health approach that includes mental, physical and spiritual balance. It is time to start taking your self-care habits seriously and action these things for your body, mind and yourself to feel better!