It might come as a surprise, but self-care and productivity are closely interlinked. In order to get things done on time, you need to manage your time well, but also have energy and motivation for your tasks. This motivation comes from taking care of yourself well and having time for both achieving things and rest.
A productive way to take care of yourself is to dedicate some time to rest with a good book or article. You can learn something new while you rest and let your mind rest with some valuable content. Reading is a great way to practice self-care as it gives you some time to yourself, to unwind before bed and relax. If reading a book is too tiresome to you at times, you can always switch to an audiobook as well.
Bath or Shower
Making sure you take care of yourself physically is a great way to increase your self-care game. In order to be more productive on your work hours, you need to take care of your hygiene and allow yourself the time to decompress and rest, and taking a bath or a quick shower can do the trick. It will help you feel refreshed and clean, increasing your mood and motivation.
Next thing is your mental state. One way to do self-care for your mental well-being is to journal. Writing things down has proven time and time again for me to be one of the greatest ways to feel better after a hard day. It can also be a great way to plan ahead for your day, week or month. Some people even plan for the whole year ahead, and you can see which approach works the best for you. If journaling seems intimidating at first, start with writing a few sentences down every few days, and then increase your time spent writing in your journal little by little.
Setting good boundaries is essential to your self-care. You can set boundaries in many different forms: relationships, screen-time, eating, work-life balance and more. Take a look at where you lack boundaries and indulge too much, be it emotional eating, going out too much, binging TV shows, or deciding you will never pick up a cigarette ever again and set yourself a boundary or two in order to practice essential self-care. When you set a boundary make sure to enforce it as well and let other know you won’t tolerate certain behaviors of theirs.
To practice self-care, another essential part of the equation is compassion. Be careful not to judge yourself when you are falling behind on important tasks, and don’t immediately cut out self-care time for yourself. Self-care is a practice like any other and you need to be kind to yourself when things don’t go according to plan. Treat yourself like a growing plant, make sure to water it, get enough sunlight and love. Be sure to fill your own bucket first before you turn to help others.
In the end, there is more than one way to practice self-care. Some practices will fall in line with your daily life immediately, some will take more time to get used to. It’s okay to switch up the practices when their effect wears off, or try a different one entirely. Remember to be kind to yourself and treat yourself gently while searching for the best ways to take care of yourself in difficult times.