Maybe a spa day? Getting a pedicure? Sure, these are forms of self-care that are wonderful, but self-care is actually SO much more and can look different from person to person. Read below on the Importance of Self-Care in Nutrition & Wellness.
First off, what exactly is self-care? Self-care is taking time to take care of yourself and your basic needs to promote overall health & well-being – so that you can continue to show up in your life and be the best mother, father, friend, sibling, spouse, employee, etc. Self-care helps us deal with the daily stressors of life, so if we regularly practice self-care, we’re much more likely to better control our emotions and deal with the tough days in life. So this could include habits related to nutrition, mental wellbeing, attending doctor’s visits, hygiene, etc. Research shows that self-care can promote positive health outcomes, such as encouraging resilience, a longer lifespan, and becoming better equipped to deal with stress.
When my clients who struggle with dieting, disordered eating, or eating disorders learn to actively practice regular self-care, they are able to reduce their disordered urges, their emotional eating, and overall improve their ability to manage emotions from a much more stable place. It can help us have a more positive relationship to food & our bodies when we’re able to take care of ourselves from a foundational level.
Imagine this: you had an extremely stressful day at work, you go home and your child is having a temper tantrum, and you need to get dinner on the table, STAT. If you’ve been neglecting self-care and you haven’t had time with friends in weeks, you’re short on sleep, you haven’t had time to relax and recharge, it’s going to make this scenario THAT much tougher. You may lose your temper, break down, or cry. But if you practice small habits of self-care daily (such as journaling, taking a bath at night, going to bed at a decent hour, stretching, etc.), you’re much more likely to be able to handle the stress, breathe through it, and keep on going.
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