Self-care offers various benefits, making it popular among many people. It does more than improve your physical health and reduce your anxiety and stress level, but it can go wrong. Here are some things to avoid.
It’s also instrumental for boosting your self-esteem, leading to a happier life and long-lasting relationships. It’s no wonder that 80% of Americans intend to practice self-care, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite its benefits, self-care can go wrong if not properly carried out. That said, here are some destructive self-care practices you’d want to avoid at all costs.
- Doing it all by yourself
While you may desire to take care of yourself, there may be certain things that can prevent you from enjoying its full benefits. For instance, responsibilities like taking care of your kids may not allow you to enjoy that needed vacation. Likewise, a tight work schedule can get in the way of a relaxing night. Therefore, it would be an error to do everything by yourself. Therefore, it’s best to get help to actualize your self-care goals. Fortunately, you can call your family members or friends to help you out. For instance, your trusted friend can babysit while you go for a relaxing date or take a refreshing nap. You can also get your elder kids to perform home chores to reduce your stress.
It’s essential to avoid over-indulgence in your self-care. Maintaining a balance in your routine to promote a healthy lifestyle is crucial. However, doing too many things can have negative consequences on your health. You know you’re over-indulging if you repeat certain habits for the temporal pleasure it brings and not its health benefits. This can cause you to feel more miserable after the pleasure wears off. For instance, over-eating your favorite food may feel delightful for a while, after which you beat yourself up. Likewise, binge-watching TV shows when you have school work or assignments can cause you to fall behind your schedule. Over-indulgence can create a vicious cycle that leaves you frustrated, distressed, and stagnated.
To avoid over-indulgence, it’s essential to practice self-discipline. Self-discipline is the act of doing something, irrespective of how you feel. While it can be daunting, you can achieve it with the right steps. For starters, acknowledge the areas you are likely to over-indulge, as it helps you create a plan to control your desires. The next step is to keep them out of sight to avoid temptation. For instance, if you have a craving for certain foods, you can clear your home off them for the best results. Since good sleep is essential for your health, you’d want to put off your TV and keep your mobile devices away to relax your mind and lull your body to sleep.
- Incurring debt while practicing self-care
Sure, you love to splurge on yourself from time to time. Indeed, spending on yourself is a great way to practice self-care and self-love. However, you might be doing the opposite if your spending is getting in the way of your finances. That said, you may want to rethink your splurging if it’s causing you to incur avoidable debt. Moreover, you may not view positive relationships and good health as the good life if you always spend as your self-care strategy. That said, you should be mindful of your expenses and ensure that you are not going out of line. As a tip, set up a reward system where you buy something nice for yourself when you accomplish a goal.
- Bad self-soothing choices
People resort to self-soothing when physically hurt, or experience anxiety and depression. It is a way people treat themselves to deal with and move past the pain, hurt, or disappointment. Self-soothing starts from birth, evident in thumb-sucking. Indeed, several self-soothing practices are beneficial for overall wellness. For instance, treating yourself to a warm bubble bath with Epsom salt or getting a good massage can relieve you of stress. Likewise, a nice cup of warm tea, aromatherapy, and listening to your favorite music can go a long way to deal with any form of pain you might be experiencing.
However, it becomes concerning if your self-soothing practices distract you from finding solutions to problems. Self-care focuses on your growth and finding meaning in life, and self-soothing is a tool for that purpose. Therefore, any practice short of this is considered destructive. Moreover, certain habits can cause more harm than good and must be avoided. For instance, alcohol and drug abuse, gambling, overconsumption of caffeine, compulsive spending habits, and poor eating habits are not ideal for your health and overall wellbeing. Therefore, it’s prudent to note your self-soothing practices to ensure that you are not sabotaging yourself.
- Not going for practices that are suitable for you
While self-care is beneficial, choosing the wrong practices can have negative consequences. Indeed, your mental and physical needs change daily, weekly, monthly, and even annually. Therefore, whatever self-care routine that once worked for you may be ineffective now. Moreover, certain strategies that work for someone may not work for you. That said, you might end up feeling exhausted and stressed with the wrong routine. For instance, a night out might stress you out if you are an indoor type. Likewise, traveling may become a chore if you don’t enjoy the activity. Furthermore, you can end up becoming more resentful when you’re not able to achieve your self-care goals.
To avoid this trap, you need to create a routine that you will gladly follow. For starters, determine what self-care is and what it’s not, as this will be the foundation of building the right routine. As a tip, focus on activities that bring you joy and how you can incorporate them into your daily life. For instance, if looking good makes you feel better, you can invest in makeup beauty products and nice attires to fulfill your desire. By all means, set goals for your self-care activities and evaluate them thoroughly after a week to determine if they are effective. Fortunately, you can keep adjusting your routine as you go forward, so keep this in mind.