How To Make Self-Care Fit Your Busy Schedule

 Source |  Daria Shevtsova

When we think about making time for ourselves it is always follow by making a statement like, “there’s never enough time”. But that is seldom true. In fact, self-care should be emphasized as our basic need right next to our birthright.

Let’s be honest: If don’t take care of yourself, you won’t be able to care of those that matter the most to you.

Consider when you are taking a flight and the flight attendant informs the cabin on “In case of emergency” instructions. One of the instructions, informs the parent to strap their oxygen mask first before applying to your child. It is a classic example of taking consideration of oneself before being of assistance to another.

Though that may seem like a random and dang near life emergency example, the concept is still congruent and simple. It might feel impossible to make time for yourself even more so when you’re a business owner but it is certainly possible.

It all starts with what are the single things you do every day. You work, you pack your lunch, you shower, you brush your time, and you eat your meals.

You get everything that is necessary done even on those crazy days where it seems impossible to finish your work. You go on automatic mode – checking your e-mails, surfing Facebook, replying back to a text.

The trick is how to fit your self-care rituals to make it seamless in your day to day schedule.

Today is the day to affirm, do the work and make those changes. With these tips in mind, you will know exactly what to do to finally commit to a self-care routine that works for you.

What does self-care mean anyways?

Self-care is any activity that allows you to be happy, confident and whole. It can be an active run outdoors, a warm yoga stretch, or something as mundane as showering or reading your favorite book. Then there is the most obvious self-love acts like buying a shirt you feel great in or traveling to a beautiful landscape.

It pays in dividends and memories. The more you show yourself care and love, the brighter your days become. You’ll be happier and restore with much energy. The only obstacle in securing your self-care is yourself and the reasons for why you cannot find the time. In this post, I am going to help you resolve that.

Prioritizing your self-care means identifying and getting rid of whatever distracts you

Like everyone, we make excuses for why we can’t find time. So, if you are serious, cut the excuse out and adapt the routine into your life, you’re going to have to do an honest review of your current schedule.

So, I have a challenge for you. For the next week, use a planner (digital or handwritten) and write out your daily schedule and be totally realistic. For example if you are on social media, take note of how long you are on surfing through the feed.

After a week or so, take a look at your schedule. What were some activities that you took part in that weren’t necessary of your time? Did you find yourself distracted from watching a little more T.V.? Or did you find yourself spending too much time on the phone chatting small talk?

Once you’ve recognize all of the low merited habits, it’s time to get rid or limit them as reasonably possible.

For example, I post informative things on my Instagram account for this website. But if I spend too much time scrolling through the main feed, I fall into the habit of spending time that I could be dedicating to myself. The same goes Facebook; which is why I take monthly breaks from the social giant from time to time.

When I am serious and dedicated about kicking distracting activities from my time, I’m always relaxed and happiest. I have more of myself to give and be of assist to others through my friendships and work. And that is the point of a self-care:

Taking care of you first so that you can best take care of others after.

Now that you know what your distractions are, replace them with self-care rituals

When we schedule our daily schedule, some of us always classify our time by breaking them into larger morning, afternoon or evening routines. What I suggest is to consider breaking each hour by 20 minute increments.

It may be excessive, but hear me out! Let’s take a look at my schedule once I adapted the 20 minute increments for my morning:

5:40 AM Wake up, meditate, pray and visualize

6:00 AM Brush my teeth, shower, apply my facial skin care routine

6:20 AM Get dress and apply my make-up

6:40 AM Drink water and my breakfast shake

7:00 AM Put on some music and relax a bit

7:20 AM Head out the door to leave to work

Now, let’s take a look at my evening routine with the 20 minute increments:

6:00 PM Come home from work

6:20 PM Greet family and my dogs. Check in with family + ask how was their day

6:40 PM Prepare and eat dinner

7:00 PM Relaxing and enjoying my meal

7:20 PM Shower and apply my facial skin care routine

7:40 PM Check my e-mails

8:00 PM Write my next blog post using the entire hour

9:00 PM Check social media, post or answer messages

9:20 PM Turn off Laptop PC

9:40 PM Catch up on my reading

10:00 PM Go to sleep

This is an example of my routine during the workweek and it may alter from time to time considering my podcast schedule on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

These activities are my main routines that don’t change much across the board and I have bolded the mindful activities that I consider my self-care rituals.

Suppose you’re not sure what you would consider a self-care ritual? Chances are, you probably apply them already! Here are some ritual ideas to identify or add to your schedule:

  • Prayer

  • Affirmations

  • Journals

  • Exercise

  • Meditation

  • Self-massage

  • Gratitude

  • Listening to music

  • Reading

If you integrate these mindful small acts into your repeatable routines in the morning to the evening, that 20 minute gesture becomes a significant reminder that you respect and love yourself.

Even learning to say no to things that interfere with your self-love practice is crucial. It is not that you’re being mean or inconsiderate of others but if it is a random request without much notice, you are allow to say no. Someone else’s request is not your call to do something about it. Remind yourself that often until you can put it into practice.

The Bottom Line

Plan out your daily activities that cater to your physical, emotional or social need then consider adding the 20 minute increments to integrate your self-care rituals.

You will know what best works for you so listen to yourself and take the time to plan out the most meaningful activities. For instance, plan one day to commit to forty minutes to an hour session once a month to get in touch with loved ones.

Also, follow-up on fun things you may want to do. Think about some laid-back activities that made you feel the happiest whether if that is hanging out at the beach with friends or joyriding around town while enjoying the sunset.

Now, make the commitment and actually do them. The more you plan and practice, the more you get better at loving yourself and others.

Like everything in this life, attaining your self-care needs requires planning your time. So kick out those things that eat away your time and plan out your self-care rituals throughout the day.

It’s not being selfish to take time out for you; it’s being considerate of you.

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