As we begin the new year, new opportunities open up for us to focus on our careers, our health, and our overall well-being. Since many of us are still working remotely, it is important to take the time to take a step back and evaluate our wellness.

Self-care can be a challenge for many of us, and it’s easy to see why. With so many self-help resources available, the journey to personal care can be daunting. Don’t worry: we’re here to help. Here are 4 simple ways to practice self-care at home.

Create a self-care routine

First things first. If you are working on a personal goal (like prioritizing self-care) you should establish a routine. Without one, it can be difficult to motivate yourself to stay on track. When you allocate your time each day with intention, you can make serious traction toward your goals.

Pick a day to prepare yourself for the week ahead. Sunday night is a fantastic choice for many people, but dedicate any day that works for you and your lifestyle. Rely on existing resources that support starting a sustainable self-care routine or create your plan from scratch. During this planning stage, you can ask yourself questions like:

1. What’s an ideal self-care routine look like to me?

2. How much time do I want to dedicate each day or week to my self-care goal?

3. In terms of an at-home self-care routine, what types of items, products, etc. might be useful to have on-hand?

Revisit your routine and results after a week or so to determine what is working or not working. Keep track of things that held you back and remember to be honest with yourself so you can continue improving your commitment to self-care practices.

Protect your immune system

A healthy immune system can prevent or limit infection. So how can you go about protecting yours, and incorporate this into your self-care routine? Well, there are many ways to accomplish this, it just depends on your lifestyle and habits.

For starters, you can make a list of go-to grocery items that you know not only support your immune function but make you feel good, too! Choosing immunity-boosting foods helps to keep your body healthy and strong. In addition, adding healthy habits like this to your self-care routine can give you peace of mind that you are truly caring for yourself.

Shopping for healthy food, drinks, vitamins and other immune-boosting products doesn’t have to take up a ton of your time. In fact, the goal isn’t ever to add more things to your plate—especially if it takes away from your idea of self-care. Instead, you can find ways to incorporate healthy shopping habits into your weekly routine without wasting time or even leaving your house. One way to do this is by using an online grocery delivery service to order healthy food, drinks, other immune-boosting essentials. You can even stock up on vitamins and OTC medications for the future when you’re not feeling your best.

Maintain Healthy Sleeping Habits

Taking care of your body is just as important when you sleep as it is when you’re awake. We recently covered how good sleep habits can change your life. Finding those habits (and maintaining them) can be a challenge. Start by establishing a regular sleep schedule for yourself. It is recommended that adults get 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night. Using these parameters as a foundation for your sleep plan is a great place to start.

Consistency is key. A nightly routine that works in tandem with your daily routine will not only help you achieve your sleep goals but your self-care ones, too. Take advantage of the sleep cycle functions on your phone. Not only will this help remind you when it is time to go to bed or to get up, but it helps to create that steady routine.

Be mindful of your sleeping environment, too. Avoid using mobile devices, laptops, or TVs while you’re trying to sleep. The blue light emitted can overstimulate you, keeping you awake. That doesn’t include any of the other potential health risks related to blue light.

Find Your Inner Joy

Sometimes the most important part of your day is the time you spend on yourself. After a busy day at the (home) office, set aside some time to recenter by creating a spa environment in your bath. Add some soothing music and candles for atmosphere and you will be relaxing in no time.

Of course, you can also use this time to focus on your hobbies you may have let slip to the wayside. Try out that new recipe you’ve been thinking about, or pick up your old guitar and work on a song or two. Getting in touch with your inner joy will aid your mental health as much as your physical.

You may also decide to use this time for a quick workout, reading a book, watching your favorite streaming show, or, and probably most importantly, spending time with your loved ones. Take the time to reconnect with the people and things that make you “you.”

Even though the world around you never stops moving, it is more than okay to take a break and focus on healing yourself. You won’t regret it.

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