Everyone takes self-care activities for granted as a necessary part of life. How often do you think about self-care? You may view self-care practices — such as eating healthy foods, exercising, getting enough sleep — as obvious, so much so that they don’t register in your mind.
However, self-care is even more important when working from home because you need to make a conscious effort to make self-care a daily habit. The problem is, working from home leaves you with little time for self-care and provides many distractions that might hinder self-care practices.
Self-care activities must be a priority on your to-do list when working from home. But that’s easier said than done. Self-care has first to become an ingrained habit, and this doesn’t happen overnight, but it will be well worth the effort.
Here’s a look at how to make self-care a priority while working from home, so you feel less stressed and more productive.
The importance of self-care when working from home
Stress is one of the most significant issues people face when working from home. From juggling work assignments to managing household responsibilities to the sheer isolation of working from a home office, it’s easy to see how stress and burnout creep into your day.
Fortunately, self-care activities can help you avoid burnout and stress. Even if you have a busy schedule working from home, it’s possible to incorporate activities into your daily routine to improve your wellbeing.
There are self-care activities that have a physical aspect, such as going to the gym or going for a walk. Other self-care activities have a mentally soothing factor, such as reading a book or taking time to write in your journal.
Whether physical or mental, the goal is to find self-care activities you enjoy and look forward to doing every day. With regular effort over time, you position yourself to experience higher productivity and self-confidence—which are essential when working from home.
Self-care activities to try at home
- Do some light stretching or yoga for 20 minutes every day
- Give yourself off days for a mental break
- Practice self-affirmations every day
- Meditate for ten minutes every morning
- Listen to calming music for ten minutes after work
- Read a book for thirty minutes every evening
- Write down problems you have and come up with solutions for them
- Listen to self-growth podcasts
- Read self-motivation blogs online
- Listen to an inspiring speech on self-motivation and self-growth
How to include self-care activities in your workday
When it comes to making self-care a priority in your daily life, self-care needs to become part of your routine. And to create a routine, you need an action plan. Here are some tips to help you get started.
1. Prioritize self-care in your to-do list
It’s easy to put self-care activities on the back burner when you’re busy working at home. Don’t forget, though: self-care is just as important as work and needs to be a daily activity.
Just as you would schedule work-related tasks, it’s crucial to schedule self-care activities. Planning ensures you make time for your wellbeing and don’t let other distractions get in the way.
How to create a self-care to-do list
When scheduling self-care activities, think about what times of day are best for you. Some people prefer morning self-care activities, while others find evening self-care more relaxing.
Also, consider what self-care activities work best for you during that time of day. For example, if you like to go for walks and prefer to schedule your self-care early in the day, plan to go for a walk during your lunch break. Or, if you prefer to read in the evening, schedule that time at the end of your day.
Then when you know what time and activities you want to do, take time to schedule self-care into your weekly routine and set reminders for yourself. Set a reminder on your phone or use a scheduling and reminder app to stay on track.
It becomes more difficult to cancel or postpone the self-care activities you select when you see that you’ve scheduled self-care in your calendar. And, just like with work-related tasks, when self-care is in your calendar, it’s less likely you’ll put it off.
2. Have self-care resources at hand
When you work from home, it’s beneficial to access self-care resources. These resources can be self-care checklists, bookmarked blog posts, or even self-care books.
By having these handy resources, you keep self-care top of mind and get inspiration for new self-care activities you might not have considered before.
Examples of self-care resources
Examples of self-care resources include checklists, guides, blogs, and books. Take some time to find a few options in each category and make them accessible throughout the day. For example, if you enjoy the variety of self-care options checklists provide, then print off a blank copy and stick it on a cork or magnet board. Then throughout the day and week, check off an item every time you use the checklist. Or, if reading is your idea of self-care, then use an app like Goodreads to find and save books.
3. Use a self-care tracker
A self-care tracker is a great way to keep track of the self-care activities you’ve been doing. This self-care activity can be helpful in two ways:
- You can use it to track the self-care activities you’ve been regularly doing and make sure you include various self-care activities each day.
- If you’re struggling to find time for self-care, you can use your self-care tracker as a goal to work towards. For example, if you only have time for one self-care activity per day, make it a goal to do two self-care activities the next day.
How to make a self-care tracker
To make a self-care tracker, you’ll need some paper and a pen or pencil.
- Start by making a list of self-care activities that work for you.
- Next, divide the paper into seven sections, one for each day of the week.
- In each section, write the name of at least one self-care activity.
- Then, track whether or not you did the self-care activity that day.
Look back at your list at the end of the week and celebrate your wins and acknowledge opportunities to improve next week. Keep learning and improving on your dedication to self-care.
4. Make self-care a social activity
Being thoughtful and proactive about self-care while working remotely can be tricky since most people do it in isolation. When you work from home, it’s easy to slip into working long hours without taking a break.
By making self-care a social activity, you break up the day and add variety to your routine.
How to make self-care a social activity
There are several ways to make self-care a social activity:
- Schedule self-care activities with co-workers. Schedule mutually convenient times to connect with co-workers for self-care activities, such as walks, yoga, or meditation–all of which you can do virtually.
- Join a self-care group or forum. There are lots of online groups that focus on self-care. Self-care groups can be a great way to connect with people who share your self-care interests and to get new ideas for self-care activities.
- Attend self-care events in your area (in-person or virtually). There are likely regular self-care events happening in your neighbourhood. Take a break during your workday or afterward to check out online event calendars or local newspapers to find out what’s happening in your community.
- Find a self-care buddy. When it comes to self-care, it can be helpful to have someone to talk to and share ideas with. Finding a self-care buddy can help you develop and maintain healthy self-care habits. To find a self-care buddy, you can reach out to co-workers with similar self-care interests and goals. Look for someone who you feel comfortable talking to about self-care.
5. Establish self-care rewards for when you meet your goals
If stress and burnout are why you want to add self-care to your daily routine, consider setting self-care rewards. This approach can help you stay motivated to make self-care a priority.
Self-care rewards can be anything that makes you feel good and puts a smile on your face. Some self-care rewards ideas include:
- Getting a massage
- Buying yourself flowers
- Enjoying a guilt-free Netflix binge session
- Taking a walk in nature
- Eating your favorite food
- Treating yourself to a new book, gadget, or piece of clothing
Self-care rewards are a powerful motivator because they provide a tangible way to celebrate your self-care successes.
How to set self-care rewards
To set self-care rewards, follow these steps:
- Decide what type of self-care reward you want. Your reward could be something physical, like a new book or gadget, or something intangible, like taking a walk in nature.
- Come up with a list of self-care goals that you want to achieve. These could be related to your physical and emotional health, such as reducing stress levels or improving sleep quality.
- Match each self-care goal with a corresponding self-care reward. For example, if your goal is to lose 10 lbs. by taking time to work out at home, your self-care reward might be buying a new piece of clothing you’ve been eyeing.
- When you complete a self-care goal, reward yourself with the corresponding self-care reward.
- Repeat until you’ve completed all of your self-care goals.
- Self-care rewards are a great way to stay motivated and celebrate your self-care successes. It’s easier to prioritize self-care when you have something to look forward to enjoying.
Redefine your day to make time for self-care activities
Self-care is an integral part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle, primarily when working remotely. By making self-care a priority, you can reduce stress and burnout and improve your overall wellbeing.
There are endless possibilities for activities that you can try at home when it comes to self-care. By following the tips and strategies in this article, you can make self-care a priority and improve your wellbeing. Thanks for reading!
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