Why do we care about boundaries

Learning to care for yourself: reasons, exercises & tips

Waiting customers, urgent projects, demanding family members - we are often busy with important things. Self-care falls by the wayside. We take care of everyone, just not ourselves. Willingness to help, a sense of duty and commitment are important qualities - but if they lead to losing sight of your own needs, you have to change something. A lack of self-care has serious consequences. Ask yourself honestly: Am I really taking good care of myself and making sure I am fine? We explain what self-care means and how you can take better care of yourself ...

➠ Content: This is what awaits you

➠ Content: This is what awaits you

Definition: what is self-care?

Caring means taking care of other people. You want someone else to be well, take care of it, help, and offer advice and support. With self-care, you do the same - only for yourself. You do everything to ensure that you are well, take care of yourself, and pay attention to your own needs, wishes and limits. Self-care shows itself in the effort to focus on your own well-being, to deal with yourself well and also to protect yourself from excessive stress.

It is important to distinguish between selfishness and self-love. It's not about thinking only of yourself or even taking advantage of others. Rather, the concept of self-care is about not forgetting yourself. Often we just care about others. Partners, children, family, work, colleagues, boss, customers ... you shouldn't just take care of yourself - but also.

Signs of a lack of self-care

If there is a lack of self-care, many immediately think of an unkempt appearance with negligent clothing or poor personal hygiene. However, it is seldom possible to tell whether a person pays sufficient attention to himself by looking at the appearance. Much more often, they are things that other people do not even notice.

  • You feel irritable and unbalanced.
  • You are exhausted and listless.
  • You have a weak immune system.
  • You feel you have missed out.
  • You don't drink and eat enough - or too unhealthy.
  • You don't take breaks and strain yourself.
  • You're not getting enough sleep.

Reasons for low self-care

There are two prerequisites for someone to take good care of themselves: self-acceptance and self-competence. For example, to accept that one already has to accept physical limitations. At the same time, you need self-competence to deal with it properly. A lack of self-care is therefore rarely a question of too little time. Of course, sometimes it has to be quick and unhealthy snacks are used instead of eating healthy - but these are just exceptions.

If there is a lack of self-care in the long term, the problems lie deeper. The following reasons are particularly common:

  • You don't want to appear selfish.
  • They don't think they deserve it.
  • They want to be commended for their helpfulness.
  • You are very performance-oriented.

Behind all of these reasons are certain beliefs, such as, “You are not worth caring for. That little bit of work is nothing. ”They can lead to an inferiority complex and an exaggerated work ethic in which any recreation is branded as laziness.

An overly great desire for appreciation and recognition from outside can also lead to one's own needs not being recognized or at least being neglected.

Self care exercises

Self-care should become a permanent attitude and way of life. It is not a “now I will take a quick look at myself”, but a way of thinking in which you pay close attention to yourself and take care of yourself. Especially at the beginning, a few exercises can make it easier to get started and help you treat yourself better:

Write morning pages

Take a few minutes each morning to write down your thoughts in the form of morning pages. Record what is on your mind, what you are thinking about, and how you are doing. Try to be as honest as you can when doing this. Nobody else has to read your notes. This exercise improves the awareness of one's own feelings.

Take a break

A particularly pleasant exercise in self-care is taking regular time out. Take an hour or two regularly, which you design according to your own ideas. Basic idea for the time: Enjoy yourself. This can be alone with a good book or a long chat with a friend. Just do something that makes yourself happy.

Practice gratitude

Gratitude is a good practice for more self-care. Be aware of all of the things that you are grateful for, that are going well for you, and that you enjoy. Think about what you seem to take for granted: a nice apartment, the workplace, a nice weekend with the family or your health.

How do I manage to take care of myself?

You can already take the first step to more self-care with the signs and exercises mentioned above. Make sure you get enough sleep, a healthy diet and little stress - with this basis you are already taking care of your own well-being. However, that alone is not enough. In addition, you need to practice and maintain self-care in everyday life. These tips will help:

  • Appreciate yourself
    Feelings of inferiority make you dependent on the opinion of others. They need outside approval and approval. Wrong approach. Learn that you are good enough yourself. They are worth taking care of. At any time and any day. Treat yourself well and realize that your worth does not depend on others.
  • Realize your needs
    We often ask ourselves: What does the other need? But when was the last time you asked yourself this question? Listen to your inner self and recognize your own needs. This includes the conscious attitude to take more care of yourself. More time for yourself or a hobby, activities with friends and family, a regular appointment for a good meal with your partner - there can be countless needs and desires. Self-care means knowing and respecting them.
  • Maintain social contacts
    Self-care doesn't have to mean you come back alone. Friends are an important social factor that you should definitely maintain. They give you new ideas, listen to problems, encourage and help with advice and tips. Even short conversations with good friends or an evening together are real balm for the soul.
  • Say no
    A fundamental point in self-care is the ability to set boundaries and say no. Anyone who does not do this will be exploited. You need a healthy egoism to know your limits and make sure they are respected. Sometimes you have to cancel and ask the other person for their understanding. Always ask yourself: Does it really suit me right now? Do I have the time and energy? Rejection won't please everyone, but it's essential if you want to take better care of yourself.
  • Stop worrying and negative thoughts
    Optimism and positive thinking help with self-care. Many people are stuck in a carousel of negative thoughts. You worry, fear, and doubt. Over time, these become a burden - and reinforce each other. Establish positive thoughts and stop the endless brooding.

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[Photo credit: Karrierebibel.de]