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Self care tips for busy working women: Prioritise your well being to find balance and thrive.

Updated: Jun 7, 2023

Self care is one of the primary habits we need to develop as working women to help us maintain balance in our lives. It is crucial to our overall well being and improves our quality of life and yet tends to be elusive to most of us. We are conditioned to put our needs on the back burner and prioritise work and family and everything in between. But much like the safety video we are shown inflight (on planes) when the oxygen mask comes down, we must put it on ourselves first before helping others. In fact, it enables us to help others better. So here are some self-care tips from my experience, that you can incorporate into your life and routine:

  1. Setting boundaries: Learning to say 'NO' when necessary. Protect your time, energy & emotional well-being. It is ok to prioritise your needs and say yes to things only when it aligns with your values and goals.

  2. Connect with nature: This one is on top of my self-care list. Spend time outdoors in parks, forests or beaches. Take walks in nature, breathe in the fresh air, observe the sounds and take in the beauty. For me, engaging with the nature around me brings with it a sense of grounding, gratitude, peace and a connection with the world around us. It helps me feel refreshed and rejuvenated.

  3. Getting enough rest: Aim for at least 7-9 hours of sleep. Create a bedtime routine that helps you unwind and relax and is conducive to a good night’s sleep. This one is still a work in progress for me as I have always preferred staying up late and waking up late. Binge watching shows on Netflix and technology, in general, does not help. But I am getting there.

  4. Exercise and stay active: Physical activity is not only for physical health but also helps to boost your moods & reduce stress. My experience with this is to find a form of exercise that you enjoy such as walking, dancing, yoga, swimming, cycling, running and so on to keep you motivated.

  5. Eat a nutritious meal: Fuel your body with a balanced diet with food from each food group such as fruits, vegetables, lean protein, whole grains & healthy fats. Especially as we grow older a healthy diet does not only have an impact on our physical health but also on hormonal balance and mental well-being. But it is also increasingly complicated to know what is good for you and what is not. So my motto is anything in moderation is fine as long as it is a balanced diet. And with a bit of trial and error, you can find what suits you. In addition to this, it is also very important to keep yourself hydrated and have enough water throughout the day.

  6. Hobby time: Cultivate a hobby that you love such as reading, painting, dancing, singing, cooking….Find time for things that give you joy and fulfilment. Some ‘Me time” to pursue a hobby or join a social club or even time for personal grooming or spa day. Doing something creative or different from the regular routine helps to de-stress, manage anxiety, open your mind, give you new perspectives, increase imagination, creativity and more.

  7. Practising self-reflection: Take time to be by yourself. Try and spend a few minutes in self-reflection every day. You may try meditation (see my blog post on meditation) or any form of mindfulness such as deep breathing exercises, journaling, and affirmations all of which help you relax and reduce stress.

  8. Connecting with others: Spend time with your family and friends. Foster meaningful relationships with them and have meaningful conversations, enjoy fun activities or outings together or just enjoy each other’s company.

  9. Finding your purpose: Find what you are passionate about and create a vision for your dream life. If you are not following your passion or fulfilling your purpose you may feel stuck, stressed and burnt doing a job that you do not enjoy. Instead, do the work you enjoy and that aligns with your values, goals and beliefs. In the long run, this will help you lead a happier and more fulfilling life where you are relaxed and more at peace. A life of no regrets.

Finally, I believe that self-care is a personal journey. You need to find what works for you and brings you joy, relaxation and rejuvenation. But it is crucial that you make time for it in your busy schedule every day. The only way to ensure this is to start by allocating just a few minutes to yourself every day. You may then gradually increase how much time you allocate to self care. But the most important thing is to incorporate it into your routine even if it is just 5 minutes a day and do it consistently till it becomes a habit.

Last but not the least, do not hesitate to reach out for help when needed. For any of the steps above, seeking help is a sign of strength and having a support system of either friends, family or professionals is invaluable.

So do reach out to me on coachsanjukta.mitra@gmail.com if you need to brainstorm ideas and find clarity in creating your own self care routine and/or if you need the support to start incorporating it into your busy schedule to prevent burnout, reduce stress and find balance.

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