One of the topics I’d like to explore more regularly on A Girl Named PJ is self care — or how we attend to our physical, mental and emotion health.
Why? Because I’m terrible at it.
Yes, I suck at self care, but it’s not for lack of knowledge. I know I should be more intentional about taking care of my body and my mind. I don’t even have a good excuse for not flossing regularly or going to bed early or attempting to sit in silence for 10 minutes every day. I fluctuate between consciously choosing not to do those things and simply not thinking of them.
So when Pure Encapsulations reached out to me about collaborating on a post, I thought I could use the opportunity to jump start a new self-care plan. After all, taking vitamins is one of my oft-neglected daily self-care goals.
Obviously, I’m not a doctor, so I won’t tell you to start supplementing your nutrition with vitamins. However, if you already take them or if you’re thinking about adding vitamins to your diet, you might be interested in Pure Encapsulations. All of their supplements are hypoallergenic and contain zero artificial sweeteners, zero coatings, zero artificial colors, zero gluten, and zero magnesium stearate. (Apparently, in large doses, magnesium stearate can cause liver toxicity. I Googled it.)
- Getting enough sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults under the age of 65 need 7-9 hours of sleep. I probably average 6.5 hours and think I’d be a whole lot nicer in the morning if I got between 8 and 9.
morewater. I mostly drink coffee. All day, every day. Any liquid — even coffee — counts toward your daily fluid intake, but I really do need to drink more water. A recent article in the Harvard Health Letter recommends drinking 4 to 6 glasses per day, which seems a lot more reasonable than the previous recommendations of eight 8 oz glasses.
- Meditating. Or attempting to meditate. I just started reading 10% Happier, which is about a broadcast journalist’s experience with meditation. I have a feeling that when I finish, I’m going to want to give the app Headspace another shot.
- Connecting with a friend. Between being a work-at-home mom and the new kid in town, my days can often get pretty lonely. Whether it’s getting on the phone or attending a local playgroup, I need to make an effort to connect with at least one new or old friend every day.
- Exercising. Before I had two kids, exercising used to look like lifting weights with a trainer or doing cardio at the gym. Now, I basically just run up and down the stairs of our townhouse. I’d like to be more intentional — but also flexible — about exercising. Some days I may only be able to manage a 30-minute walk around the neighborhood, but I also hope to find an exercise class to attend regularly.
- Flossing. Honestly, I usually don’t pick up floss unless I feel something stuck between my teeth. That’s bad dental hygiene, and it has to change.
- Following an evening beauty routine. For somebody so paranoid about getting wrinkles, you’d think I’d be more diligent about taking off my makeup before bed. I almost always go to sleep without washing my face, so a nighttime beauty routine would need to be simple yet effective.
- Picking a bedtime — and sticking to it. In order to get between 8-9 hours of sleep, I need to start going to bed at a more reasonable hour. That means I have to be willing to make sleep a priority over working. Besides, it’s not like I’m doing my best work at 1am.
To motivate me to meet these daily self-care goals, I created a printable weekly self-care checklist for my fridge that I can reference throughout the day and use to track my progress. I don’t expect to knock it out of the park my first week (or even my first month), but I would like to see myself improving over time.
Since I’m probably not the only one here who struggles with self care, I thought you might like a free copy of my weekly self-care checklist. So I asked my friend Sarah to make it pretty — thanks, Sarah! You can cross out any self-care goals that don’t apply to you and add your own at the bottom of the page. (There are a couple of blank spaces just for that!)
If you find this printable useful, please let me know! I’m also curious about your self-care plans. What are some of the things you do daily, weekly, or monthly to take care of your mental, physical, and emotional health?
PS – Because sometimes you just can’t adult today.
Disclosure: This post is a collaboration with Pure Encapsulations. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that allow me to bring new, exciting content to A Girl Named PJ!