How to spend a self-care day while having a full-time job? I remember when I was working a full-time job as a receptionist and I would have one day off per week, I often didn’t even know what to do on those days. I would spend the opportunity to slow down and recharge by catching up with the new Suits episodes instead of catching up with sleep.
Even though I do think that sometimes it’s much needed to spend a day by doing absolutely nothing and just going with the flow of the day, the other times it’s good to add some direction even to the days off.
So here are some ideas on how to spend a day off and reset your energy between those hectic days.
1. don’t set an alarm
The idea of a self-care day is to reset and give your body what it needs. Let your body wake up naturally and start the day off by being fully rested. If it means waking up at 11 a.m., why not? Trust your body, it always knows what’s best for you.
If you’re not usually tracking your water intake, you could give it a chance on a self-care day. Staying hydrated will boost your energy, cleanse your body (inside and out), improve your skin etc. Also, you could squeeze an orange or a lemon in a bigger bottle and drink it throughout athe day, if you don’t necessarily enjoy the water itself.
Just a few stretches will make your body feel so much better. The more often you do it, the more flexible you’ll become. I remember when I couldn’t even touch my toes standing up… That changed soon after I implemented stretching into my daily routine. It has such a calming effect on your mind and it’s really enjoyable. Yes, you could do some yoga as well, but if you’re not a fan of any physical activity, this is also a good start.
However, I will suggest my favorite yoga channel Yoga with Adrienne which provides a huge variety of yoga practices. 5-minute morning stretch, 30-day yoga challenges, 15 -minute core practices for your ab muscles, you name it. This channel has everything when it comes to yoga. Even advice on how to clean your yoga mat. Check it out yourself here.
4. set an intention for your self-care day
How do you want to feel? Are there some things you want to do? How do you want to feel at the end of the day? Set a clear intention and have it in your mind during the day. That way, even if something unexpected comes up, you know how you want to feel and you’re not going to let any external circumstances change that. If the intention is to feel calm and suddenly you find yourself in a situation filled with anger and frustration, say to yourself that it’s just temporary. The situation will pass as everything always does, and get back to your self-care day. Find the peace within you. Everything you will ever need is already within you.
5. repeat an affirmation
As I’ve said, if the intention is to feel calm, the affirmation could be I am calm. If that can’t be further from the truth and you can’t make yourself believe it, say I am learning to be calm. The thing with affirmations is that we are trying to align with the best version of ourselves. Imagine there is already a version of yourself living the life you want. Try to align with that version. Try to be that person. Act as if you already are that person. Nothing is ever out of reach.
One of the things that I often say on this blog is that we can do absolutely anything we set our mind to. If anyone is ever stopping you from going after the life you want, it’s you. If anyone is ever letting you feel bad, it’s you. Today, make yourself feel great. Don’t criticize yourself, you’ve been doing that your whole life. Today, say to yourself whatever you want to hear. Be your own cheerleader. Repeat an affirmation that will make you feel great.
In my eBook I have 100 affirmations, some are related to health, career, relationships, forgiveness (and 96 more), so feel free to check it out here.
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How to act ”as if” you have already achieved your goals
”The mind is like water. When it’s turbulent, it’s difficult to see. When it’s calm, everything becomes clear.”
Or take a few deep breaths envisioning in your mind exhaling anxiety and inhaling all the positivity the day might bring. If you haven’t meditated before, I suggest guided meditations. You can try with 5-minute morning meditations which are very simple to follow. Meditation will boost your energy so it’s a great thing to add to your self-care day. Here is one guided meditation for positivity that I used to do almost daily when I started meditating. Now I prefer to meditate by listening to some calming music. So experiment and see what works for you.
7. eat a healthy meal
Even if it’s some fruit as a snack, it’s a good start. The more healthy meals you eat, the more you’ll find yourself craving healthy foods. Yes, it’s possible to have cashew cravings instead of pizza cravings. Also, the healthier you eat, the more in tune you’ll be with your body to recognize what it lacks. Therefore instead of feeling guilty for eating food that always makes you feel bad, try to feel good about eating. Having a healthy relationship with food isn’t that difficult once you start eating food that fuels your body with energy. Here are some ideas on what you can eat throughout the day, including 3 meals that are easy to make.
8. make a gratitude list
”When some things go wrong, take a moment to be thankful for the many things that are going right.”
I was on the phone with my mum the other day and she was saying how people are complaining all the time. For a few solid minutes she was in this vicious circle of complaining about complaining. I just stopped her after a few minutes of the monologue and said ”Do you know what you’re doing right now? You are complaining about other people’s complaining.” Of course, she just burst into laughter…
It all starts with you and your perspective on the situation. There is always something to be grateful for. In its essence, everything is neutral.
Your partner breaks up with you. You get some unexpected expenses. You lose your job. None of these things is negative.
It’s just a situation. Life happens – accept it and go with it. Accept every situation and learn to find the positive in it. Focus on the present moment and all the good things you have in life. People that you can call friends, good wi-fi connection, almond milk on sale, food in your fridge etc. No matter how small, there is always something to be grateful for. Once you realize how blessed you are, it will turn your whole day around. Ultimately, if you make it a habit, it will change your life.
Also, I’d just like to mention that this doesn’t have anything to do with religion, as I’ve stumbled upon some posts that are focused on saying thank you to God. Myself, I’m not a religious person. I do believe that our thoughts create our reality and what you focus on grows. You focus on the positive – the more positive things you’ll attract. Simple as that.
9. take a walk outside
Bring a camera if you want, or a book and just enjoy your surroundings. Yesterday I had such a great day by myself. I didn’t have any plans as to where I wanted to go, so I just went for a walk in the center of Zagreb and wandered for a few hours. So many beautiful parks and aesthetically pleasing buildings, my Instagram feed will be very thankful. Then I sat in a coffee place to catch up with my reading. I bought a book Veronika decides to die by Paulo Coelho in August when I moved to Zagreb and was stuck on page 37 since then. It’s such a nice feeling to just read outside while drinking your favorite coffee. I highly recommend you try it.
10. connect with people
”There are some people in life that make you laugh a little louder, smile a little bigger and live just a little bit better.”
Send a message to your friend you haven’t talked to in a while, show interest in what your friends are doing, drink some tea with your mum… Sometimes it’s much needed to spend some time alone and connect to ourselves. But sometimes, nothing beats a good conversation with a friend. Don’t be shy to reach out to people whose presence you genuinely enjoy. Even if there’s someone you like but have never talked to, use the power of social media and say hi. What’s the worst that can happen? No one died of seeing ”seen”.
Initially, I planned to have 20 ideas on how to spend a self-care day in only one post, but seeing my word count going above 1500 words, I’ll divide this post into 2 parts. In the 2nd one, I’ll share advice on what to journal on specifically on your self-care day, how to fill in your planner while sharing with you one of the best planners for 2019. And we’re also going to talk about one-day trips and decluttering challenges, plus some other things you can do on a self-care day, so stay tuned. Subscribe to my mailing list at the end of this post to get some extra motivation and…
… have a great day,