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  • Karen Stoner, LMT

4 Things (besides massage) that you can do for self care

4 things (besides massage) that you can do for self care

1. Talk to a friend about nothing

Short Answer: Just another human to talk to, vent with, share memes for a break or laugh can make a huge difference in your stress levels and overall feelings of self-worth and happiness.

More details: Humans are not meant to be solitary creatures, they need social interaction. Having another person to talk to, even if it isn't about anything in particular, is vital to taking care of yourself. You don't have to unload all your heavy problems on the other person, even just silly people-watching, laughing over online videos, or yes, even talking about the weather can create a sense of support and good feelings.

4 things (besides massage) that you can do for self care

2. Go for a walk

Short answer: Never underestimate the power of taking a few simple steps. It doesn't have to be long, or in any exotic locale. A short walk can sometimes have amazing powers to clear and calm your mind, and make you feel like you've done something good for yourself.

More details: Nothing fixes a stressful situation like taking yourself out of it for a short time. Stepping away from routine, even for as little as 5-10 minutes can reset things in your mind and body. You don't have to go to an extreme like "submerging yourself fully in nature" - a simple walk around the block can expose you to some fresh air, some sunlight (and subsequent Vitamin D), and give you some space to breathe and restart.

4 things (besides massage) that you can do for self care

3. Meditate

Short answer: Meditation doesn’t have to be formal or intense. It can be as simple as taking a quiet moment looking out the window while drinking a cup of coffee. A little quiet time with your thoughts can help calm your mind, refocus, and help you think more clearly.

More details: Many people are afraid of meditation because they fear they can't sit still and focus for a long time, and have no desire to sit in strange positions, listen to strange music and inhale incense. This is not necessarily what meditation entails. There are many forms of meditation, from body scans, guided imagery, to focusing on a single thought or idea. But meditation can also be sitting along quietly with your thoughts, journaling, or just taking a break and letting your mind either wander or go blank. Basically, it's any opportunity we take to "close all the tabs" in our brains and let them rest.

4 things (besides massage) that you can do for self care

4. Do a hobby you enjoy

Short answer: When you are feeling overwhelmed, a distraction with something you love can help bring you back to a calmer place. Whether it is something tactile like a craft, calming like reading a book, or stimulating like a crossword puzzle, focusing briefly on something you enjoy can help you better cope with the stuff in life you don’t enjoy.

More details: We don't allow ourselves enough fun. Maybe because we always have so much going on, so many tasks to complete, and the hope that if we work hard, we'll create the availability to do more fun things. We have hobbies to take ourselves away from the stresses of our day-to-day lives and allow ourselves to escape from the norm for a short time. You are not being negligent or lazy to take some time to focus on something you enjoy doing. It is good for you - take the time for yourself and your own care.

4 things (besides massage) that you can do for self care

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