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When I worked at a domestic violence shelter they used to talk to us about self care all the time. I thought it was nice for other people but I always ignored it and didn’t think it applied to me. I was too busy working and going to grad school. It was great for my coworkers who could make time to relax but I didn’t have the time. I had a real “power through it” mentality. I’m sure you can guess where this is going and you’re right, it ended badly in a spectacular breakdown that took me weeks to recover from. These days I take self care really seriously and I make my mental health a priority on my to do list. Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of articles on Pinterest about self care plans that involve spa days and pedicures. If you can afford to get massages and facials then freaking do it girl and drink a little cucumber water for me. I know I’m too freaking broke for that and I’m sure that I’m not the only one. Here are some ideas for when you need to feel better fast but you’re really broke. Learn from my mistakes and make it a priority to do something for your mental health today, even if you feel like you don’t have time. Shameless plug-checkout my article on how to afford self care when you’re broke.
- Get some library books (mine even has Kindle books!)
- Send your friend notes some love notes via text message
- Write a gratitude list
- Take a free online class from Harvard
- Signup for a free trial of Showtime or HBO and do some binge watching
- Clean out your closet and donate your old clothes
- Go for a walk, bonus points if it’s somewhere you haven’t been before
- Call a friend or family member on the phone
- Make a playlist of songs that put you in a good mood. Checkout mine here.
- Rearrange your furniture
- Listen to a podcast
- Commit to not complaining for a whole day
- Setup a mental health planner
- Take a bath
- Turn off your phone, computer and TV for 24 hours
- Write down affirmations for the week
- Join a support group
- Get outside
- Write a bucket list of things you want to do in your lifetime
- Listen to stand up on Pandora
- Clean your room
- Have a dance party
- Challenge yourself to drink a shit ton of water
- Volunteer at an animal shelter
- Watch a sunset
- Watch some TED talks
- Go to bed early
- Make plans to see friends that make you happy
I am not a licensed therapist. If you are suffering from a major disorder and need treatment please seek the help of a professional. If you need help finding a mental health care provider call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or visit BetterHelp to talk to a certified therapist online at an affordable price. You can download a free printable list of hotlines here and join the free mental health support group on Facebook here. This post contains affiliate links, you can read my full disclosure policy here.
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