30 Days of Essential Self Care Ideas

30 Days of Essential Self Care Ideas

When was the last time you took a moment to prioritize your own peace of mind and happiness? Self care shouldn’t be something you occasionally indulge in — ideally, self care should be a regular part of your routine. If you’re not sure where to begin, we have a list of 30 easy self-care ideas to incorporate into your daily life. Try one out each day this month to see how prioritizing your needs can help you feel better than ever.

Self care ideas: 30 days of making time for yourself

Day 01: Try a new hobby.

Too often as adults, it’s easy to say, “I would love to do [insert activity here] if I had more time, but I’m just too busy.” Now is your excuse to finally devote time to the hobby you’ve been wanting to try for ages.

Day 02: Take a luxurious bath or shower

Part of self-care is prioritizing your physical needs. Taking a luxurious bath or shower is the perfect way to take care of your body. Put on some music, set up some ambient lighting, and invest in some fancy bath products. Once you start relaxing in the shower, you won’t want to go back.

Day 03: Spend time outside

These days, most of us spend the majority of our time looking at screens. Today is the day to break the habit and to go spend some time outside. If you like being active, consider playing a sport or a game. However, even if you don’t, just sit in the sun for a few minutes — you’ll do yourself some good.

Day 04: Meditate for a few minutes.

Health experts agree that regular meditation has plenty of benefits. Whether you’re new to a meditation practice or you meditate all the time, spend some time sitting quietly with yourself today. You can meditate on your own or find a guided meditation online to help you focus.

Day 05: Read a book.

Reading regularly is one of those habits that tend to fall by the wayside as you get older. However, when there’s time, most of us enjoy getting lost in a good book. As a self care idea, spend some time today reading a book that you’ve been meaning to pick up for a while. Even if you only make it a few pages, you’ll be glad you did.

Day 06: Call a friend.

Reconnecting with old friends can be a great way to embrace self care. To that end, today’s challenge is to pick up the phone and call someone who you haven’t talked to in a while. Odds are that after a few minutes of chatting, you’ll find yourself in a much better attitude than you started to dial.

Day 07: Go for a walk.

Engaging in regular movement is important for both your physical and mental health. While you don’t need to become the next Olympian to be healthy, there’s a good chance that taking a short walk will have a positive impact on your body and your mental attitude.

Day 08: Get some extra sleep.

For some of us, the idea of getting a solid eight hours of sleep every day is almost laughable. However, maintaining a regular sleep schedule is also crucial for your physical and mental health. With that in mind, today, spend some time getting some extra shut-eye.

Day 09: Listen to music.

Few things can pump us up like listing to a great song. Today’s self care idea is to put on your favorite music, pump up the volume, and jam out. We can almost guarantee that in just a few songs, you will have a more positive outlook on the day ahead.

Day 10: Journal about your day.

Journaling can be a great self care practice. While you can really write about anything, if you need help getting started, simply write about your day. Spend some time reflecting on what happened, how you felt, and what were the most meaningful moments. Then, put it down on paper.

Day 11: Cuddle with a pet.

Being with pets can also have a positive impact on our mental health. If you have a pet of your own, make it a point to cuddle with them today. If you don’t have a pet of your own, you can always visit an animal shelter or ask a friend who has a pet to let you babysit.

Day 12: Use positive affirmations.

Positive affirmations are positive statements that can help you overcome self-doubt. When repeated frequently, science says that these statements can help you change your outlook. To that end, today’s task is to look in the mirror and repeat your favorite affirmation to yourself.

Day 13: Practice a power pose.

As the name suggests, power-posing is a self-improvement technique where people stand in a posture that they mentally associate with being powerful. This activity is meant to boost your confidence and self-esteem. While it may feel silly at first, spend a few minutes standing in your favorite power pose and see how you feel.

Day 14: Eat your favorite meal.

Sometimes, self-care is about treating yourself. For today’s exercise, eat your favorite meal. If you like to cook, make an activity out of cooking the meal for yourself before you sit down to enjoy it. However, if you don’t care for cooking, don’t sweat it. Getting take-out works just as well.

Day 15: Challenge yourself to drink more water.

Did you know that the average person needs to drink anywhere from 11 – 15 cups of water per day? Unfortunately, most of us don’t even get close to hitting that mark. To that end, for today’s activity, challenge yourself to drink more water. Even if you don’t manage to drink the recommended amount of water, upping your intake is undoubtedly a good thing.

Day 16: Dance it out.

There’s something about dancing that is bound to improve your mood. Trust us when we say that you don’t need to have any particular moves to participate in this activity. You just need to turn up the music and dance like nobody’s watching.

Day 17: Watch your favorite movie.

For today’s self-care activity, turn on your favorite movie. If you can, make a night out of it and grab some snacks, pop some popcorn, and dim the lights. By the time you curl up on the couch to watch the flick, we’re betting that you will already feel more relaxed.

Day 18: Do something creative.

This self-care initiative is about being creative in whatever way feels good to you. If you were an artist as a kid, consider breaking out your art supplies and creating your newest masterpiece. If you enjoy playing instruments, spend some time practicing.

Day 19: Take a break from social media.

Self-care isn’t always about indulging in things that feel good. Sometimes, it’s about breaking bad habits for the overall good of your health. While some of us can use social media without getting too invested, for others, it can have a negative impact on our moods. Try taking a break from social media for the day and see how it feels to you. If you find that you feel better, consider taking a longer break.

Day 20: Be more mindful.

Mindfulness is simply the act of being present to what you’re currently doing and feeling. It is one of the core pillars of self care. In light of that, as you go about your business today, try to be more mindful. When you catch your mind wandering, purposefully bring it back to what’s happening at the present moment.

Day 21: Stretch your body.

For many of us that have seated jobs, we don’t spend enough time stretching our bodies. Over time, our muscles can tighten substantially. Today’s task aims to combat that unfortunate side-effect. Take some time to look up a few gentle stretches on the internet and try to do them to the best of your ability.

Day 22: Rediscover old photos.

Usually, a stroll down memory lane ends up being a good thing. For today’s self-care challenge, take some time to look through old photos. We are betting that you will find some happy memories buried in those photographs and you may even find old friends who you are inspired to try to reconnect with in the future.

Day 23: Set some new goals.

Self care is not only about caring for yourself in the present moment, it’s also about setting yourself up for success in the future. Given that, it’s a good idea to spend one day setting some new goals for yourself. Make sure to choose SMART goals to increase your chances of following through on them until you achieve your desired result.

Day 24: Create a gratitude list.

Cultivating gratitude is also a key component of self-care. In light of that, one activity that you can do to help bring more gratitude into your life is to create a gratitude list. This is simply a list of 5 – 10 things that you are grateful for in the present moment. Some people use this as a daily practice, so try it out and see if you want to incorporate it into your daily routine.

Day 25: Volunteer your time.

While self-care sounds like it is centered on the individual, it can sometimes be achieved through helping others for no other reason than the fact that it feels good to give back. For today’s activity, find somewhere to volunteer your time. It can be a local school, a food bank, or any other charitable cause that speaks to your conscience.

Day 26: Explore somewhere new.

The saying “variety is the spice of life” is a cliche for a reason. Too often, we have a tendency to get stuck in our own routines, which can be boring and can have a negative impact on our moods. In order to break yourself out of the habit of falling into the same patterns, do yourself a favor and explore somewhere new. For best results, go somewhere that you’ve been meaning to go for a while.

Day 27: Rest and relax.

Many of us have a habit of feeling guilty whenever we relax. However, a foundational concept of self-care is that rest is a necessary part of life. With that in mind, your task today is to spend some time relaxing in whatever way feels good for you.

Day 28: Take a mental health day.

Too often, many of us go without using our PTO days, because we are afraid of how much work will be waiting for us when we return. That said, sometimes it is important to take a day to recharge. If you can reasonably take time off, consider using today as a mental health day. We’re betting you’ll be glad you did.

Day 29: Get yourself organized.

Unfortunately, self-care isn’t always fun. Sometimes, it means taking care of a task that you’ve been putting off for a while. Most of us have one area of our home that we’ve been meaning to organize for a while. Use today as an excuse to finally tackle that task.

Day 30: Brainstorm more self care ideas.

By now, self care has probably become a regular part of your routine. Keep the momentum going by brainstorming some more self-care ideas to take you through next month and beyond.

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Tara Mastroeni

Tara Mastroeni is a real estate and personal finance writer. She has a BFA in Media Production from Emerson College. Her work has been published on websites such as Forbes, Business Insider, and The Motley Fool. She has also been featured as a subject matter expert on Innovators with Jane King and the American Trends podcast. Find her at TMRealEstateWriter.com or on Twitter at @TaraMastroeni.