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Published on February 02, 2017

Five Simple Ways to Practice Self Care

Practice self care 

Self-care can be a tricky thing to manage with a busy schedule and daily responsibilities, but taking care of you should be a priority. You owe it to your friends, family and above all yourself to be at your best!

Here are five easy ways to practice good self-care:

Set aside “me time” every day, even if this means a brisk ten-minute walk or taking a break to read a few pages of a book. Finding time to let your mind rest lowers anxiety and stress levels that build up during the day. With a refreshed mind, you will be more productive when you return to your regularly scheduled activity.

Invest in your passions. Think about what you love and start doing it. Learn woodworking on the weekends. Join a monthly poetry or reading group. Teach yourself a few magic tricks or a foreign language. Having an identity outside of your daily priorities helps strengthen your sense of self. With work and family priorities, it can be challenging to find time to develop your own interests, but unlike “me time,” passion building does not need to happen every day. Like you, it is a work-in-progress.

Nurture your relationships. Studies show that people with strong social support systems are happier and live longer. Spending time with friends and family isn’t just enjoyable, it’s also good for you!

Make a realistic plan to take care of your body. Health-based New Year’s resolutions regularly fail because people set the bar too high. If you have gone to the gym once a month for the past year, it is unlikely that you will now go every single day. If you have been living on sandwiches during the week, perhaps it is not wise to suddenly cut bread out of your diet. Instead start out slowly, with a health routine that makes sense for you and fits into your schedule. Everybody is different and every body is too!

Check in on your mental health. Take a free, quick and anonymous mental health online screening. Oftentimes, we become so focused on staying physically healthy that we forget to pay attention to our emotional health. However, mental health directly impacts our energy levels and how we feel physically. To remain healthy this year and always, it’s important to support all aspects of our selves.

dave miers

About Dr. Dave Miers

Dave Miers, PhD, is the counseling and program development manager for mental health services at Bryan Medical Center in Lincoln, Neb.

He helped establish the Nebraska State Suicide Prevention Coalition in 1999 and chaired/co-chaired this Coalition until 2017. He currently serves as the past co-chair. Dr. Miers is a member of the leadership group for the Lincoln/Lancaster County Suicide Prevention Coalition. Dr. Miers has published research and co-authored a chapter in the Routledge International Handbook of Clinical Suicide Research focusing on family survivors of a child suicide. Dr. Miers helped develop the Lincoln Lancaster Local Outreach to Suicide Survivors (LOSS) team in Lincoln, Neb. He also helped develop other LOSS teams in Nebraska and is active with LOSS team development on a national level.

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