Self-care means taking care of yourself

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Self-care is essential to the mind, body and soul. There are an endless amount of activities, small or big, that anyone can do to help themselves.

Self-care should not be introduced once you realize that you are experiencing burnout; self-care needs to be an active part of your routine to solidify the health of yourself.

According to Macy Burkett, from the University of Kansas, “Each method of self-care fits into one of the seven pillars: mental, emotional, physical, environmental, spiritual, recreational and social. A well-balanced self-care routine involves each of these, so avoid restricting yourself to just one or two pillars. When you’re feeling down or stressed, listen to your body and the type of self-care it needs.”

Brianna Thomas, a third year psychology student at Florida A&M, spoke about how important self-care is for students and self-care practices she incorporates into her life.

“It is one of the most important things you can do for yourself and your education. Neglecting the self is to neglect your education because there is no education without you,” Thomas said.

“I like to get food that I really enjoy. When I was in Tampa, it would be a Jamaican patty from this one spot close to my house. A snack, or indulging in a smoothie or a bubble bath,” Thomas added.

Here are five daily activities that you can do to potentially give yourself a boost.

  1. Be outside or get active.

Simply getting a few rays of sunlight or vitamin D can make a huge difference on how your day can go. Being in the sunlight, going for a walk or run, or hitting the gym can have a significant impact on your body.

No need to overwork yourself or to go too hard on yourself, but slowly adding in some exercise will reflect on your energy for the day.

  1. Make sure you have a sensible breakfast.

Having a full breakfast, that not only keeps you full but energized, puts you on the path for a good and productive day. Giving yourself the proper and vital nutrients amplifies how you take care of yourself.

  1. Listen to music that makes you feel good.

Music is one of the key factors in play when it comes to how we feel throughout the day. Make sure you are listening to music that motivates you, encourages you, “pumps you up,” or puts you in a good mood. Music is powerful and sparks the energies within our bodies.

  1. Stay hydrated, drink plenty of water.

Water is one of the most essential necessities as a human. Without water, the majority of us become sluggish or lack energy. Keeping a bottle or two of water on your person is a good idea because it keeps your body flushed and hydrated.

  1. Find “you” time.

Take a break from being around so many people. College students are naturally always around people, 24-7, nonstop. Whether you have classes, are at dining halls, meetings, etc., find your essential “you” time. You do not have to go AWOL, but sometimes just stick to yourself.

Moira Lawler from Everyday Health, shared her perspective on self-care.

“Self-care is not synonymous with self-indulgence or being selfish. Self-care means taking care of yourself so that you can be healthy, you can be well, you can do your job, you can help and care for others, and you can do all the things you need to and want to accomplish in a day,” said Lawler.

Self-care is not just running bubble baths for yourself, but a 365, 24-hour system and cycle for your individual self. Sometimes self-care is separating yourself from the outside world and taking time for yourself.

Christy Romulus, a fourth-year biology pre-med student, says she does not take enough time to focus on herself as she would like.

“Not often enough, I feel like I am a very happy spirit. People always tend to come to me [because] I’m always smiling and laughing. It never really shows when I don’t want to be bothered,” Romulus said.

Michayla Cherichel, a fourth-year English major, says when she notices she needs self-care.

“Self-care is very important on a day to day. I think without it, you leave yourself vulnerable to dys-regulation. I recognize when I most need self-care when I realize I am very tired, or I find that I am not interested in things that I usually am. [If] I have a lot of lazy days in a row, that’s when I’m like ‘All right girl, let’s do what we have to do to get back on track,” Cherichel said.

With consistent and proactive cultivation of self-care habits, individuals can maintain a deep-rooted sense of self-awareness, fulfillment, and balance from