On social media, terms like "self-love" and "self-care" have been thrown around left and right. For some people, ‘living their best life’ is getting mimosas with their besties and treating themselves to a pedicure. But, is treating yourself to a few indulgences here-and-there actually supporting your physical and mental health?
I know you are probably tired of hearing it, and I feel your pain, but here are some actionable ways to promote self-care and creating habit of taking care of yourself with no day drinking required.
Put the phone down and pick up your new favorite book.
I know we all love binge-watching our latest Netflix obsession for hours on end, or looking at cute puppies on Instagram, but have you ever thought that the time we’re spending bingeing could actually be allocated to a bit of self care? It may seem a little old-fashioned, but reading a book is one fundamental way to help healthily stimulate the brain. Catching up on your Toni Morrison or Maya Angelou for just 20 minutes a day can help boost your mind; it can also help you gain a more profound sense of yourself.
Treat your mental health as seriously as you do your physical health.
There has been a long-standing stigma around seeking mental health resources in the black community. The idea of having to "suck it up" and "bottle your emotions" is being thrown out the window. Seeking out professional help is particularly important, especially in the black community where it has been seen as being overdramatic or going against your spiritual beliefs. Even if you don't feel comfortable enough seeking out professional help yet, speaking to your closest friends and family members is another great option. Setting time aside, such as once a week, to talk with your friends about how you have been feeling lately is a great way to practice being vulnerable.Your feelings are valid, and you should never feel like those around you do not consider them.
Show your hair some TLC.
When it comes to taking care of your hair, social media makes it seem like if you don’t have the perfect twist out or laid edges, you’re doing it WRONG. That shouldn't be the case. Taking care of your hair is not about making it look ‘presentable’ or ‘professional.’ For starters, societal expectations are complete trash.
such as taking some time once a week that is solely dedicated to moisturizing and conditioning your hair. Why not incorporating natural, black-owned hair products in your weekly ritual, and steering clear from products where you can't even pronounce half the ingredients and unethically produced is extremely important when purchasing these products.
Self-care doesn’t have to be drinking your body-weight in mimosas, but simply making the time to take care of yourself the best way you know. Whether that is finally reading that book you have been putting off forever, or talking to a friend about how you have been feeling lately, self-care can easily be attainable and beneficial to your well-being.
Written by: Jessica Bond