Who takes care of you when you take care of others?



Taking care of family members - such as parenting a child or making sure your elderly parents are ok - is in itself work and even stressful, let alone when your family member has challenges.


So what do you do for self-care? Here are some ideas:


Physical Care

  • Exercise regularly

  • Have a good night’s sleep

  • Eat right by cutting down on sugars and processed food

  • Drink soothing herbal tea, warm chocolate, or milk

  • Receive regular preventive medical care

  • Cuddle up with your partner or spouse

  • Take a hot shower or soak in a long bath

  • Walk your dog or on your own or with a friend

  • Learn mindfulness exercises – listen to audio clips or listen to them on YouTube

Emotional Care

  • Listen to your favorite music

  • Set time aside for fun with family and friends

  • Join a social club (such as meetup.com) and make new friends

  • Express emotions such as laughing and crying

  • Put aside alone time for self-reflection

  • Prioritize activities that make you happy

  • Be flexible about social activities and work around family schedule

  • Spoil yourself - get a massage, manicure, pedicure or go to a spa

  • Laugh at the funnies (see Yahoo’s homepage)

  • Find time for a weekly date with your partner

  • Say “No” to extra responsibilities

  • Join a parent’s network to discuss concerns

  • Consider therapy for anxiety, stress and anger management

Intellectual Care

  • Go to the library or browse the Web for intellectually stimulating content

  • Listen to radio programs, audio books or podcasts

  • Do a project – handicrafts or art

  • Write stories, blogs or personal journal

  • Watch documentaries on TV, DVD from the library or Netflix

  • Take up a hobby

  • Join an intellectual discussion group

  • Enroll in a part-time course – online or offline

Spiritual Care

  • Attend religious services

  • Spend time outdoors and in nature

  • Meditate or pray

  • Contribute to causes you believe in

  • Write a journal and reflect on your new life

  • Find quiet time for yourself

  • Volunteer with your school or charitable organization

  • Take charge of yourself – recharge!

Copyright © 2020 Lily Lu, MBA, MA, LMFT

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