How to create a Sacred Self-Care Routine

Self care is trending and so are ‘self-care Sundays’. It is common to get inspired by other bloggers on the internet and indulge in such self-care activities on some odd Sunday afternoon. But what I realized with my own experience and my clients’ experiences is that self-care has mostly become an “instagramable affair” and is hardly serving it’s true purpose – improving the quality of our lives. In this post, I want to talk about how to create a sacred self-care routine, actually follow it and improve your quality of life.

Last year, I was planning my wedding and was taking all kinds of self-care seriously. Ever since getting married in January of this year, my self-care sessions have just involves face and hair masks. So as I write this post, I am also creating a brand new self-care routine for myself. So if you want to do the same, grab a pen and paper or the Self-Care Planner and plan out your self care routine

The Self-Care Mindset

Self-care is a practice of looking after your own well-being for a healthier and happier life. ‘Self-care isn’t selfish’ because your well- being affects the world in more ways than you realize. Start your self- care practice with a mindset that these practices are going to improve your relationship with yourself as well as others.

With this mindset, you can move guilt-free and open-minded in the self-care planning session.

Types of Self-Care

There are two basic types of self-care that you need to consider. This is a fresh approach to self-care that I came up with about a year ago.

  1. Emergency Self-Care
  2. Routine Self Care

Self-care should be performed on a regular basis to maintain your physical, mental and emotional health.

But sometimes, something goes wrong or unexpected things come up and in such times self-care becomes a necessity. Say for example, you just had a break-up or you lost your pet or something bad happened and you are in grief. Such times you need to take utmost care of yourself for your overall well being.

But I am going to be honest here, whenever I am angry, sad, tired or stressed, I do not want to use my mental energy to think about what self-care activity will make me feel better. This is why I use the Self-Care Planner to plan out my self-care practices in advance (when my mind state is normal).

Now that we have all the basics out of the way, let’s get planning!

Step 1 – Emergency Self-Care

If you were to take just one piece of advice, or follow through with just one step – this is the one. Plan out your emergency self-care routine. You will thank yourself later, trust me! I will be doing this for 4 emergency situations –

  • Angry
  • Tired
  • Stressed
  • Sad
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Here is how you do it –

  1. Think of the last time you were in that mental state
  2. Ask yourself – What would have made me feel better when I felt like that
  3. Write all those activities down

Example – Here is how I just planned my emergency self care for when I am stressed

  1. Last time I was stresses? – When I had to make the DM presentation for the new college
  2. What would have made me feel better?
    1. Talking to someone about it
    2. Stress release Meditation in calm
    3. Going on a long walk / drive
    4. Reflection journaling about it

Truth bomb – Making a warm cup of tea / coffee does very little when you are stressed.

#ProTip – These self-care cheat-sheets not only help you skip the decision making but help your loved ones bring you comfort. My husband knows that whenever I am tired, a shoulder massage makes me happier. Your self-care cheat sheets not only help you, but also help the ones who care for you.

Step 2 – Ideas Braindump

Brain-dump various self-care activities that you personally enjoy in each of the three basic categories – Mind, Body and Soul. Starting with a brain dump and then organizing all those thoughts is the ultimate way to tackle any task / project or plans.

You can get inspiration for your self care activities from your friends, family, blogs of Pinterest. Honestly, Pinterest is my favorite place to search for any resources. Here is my Self-Care board if you need a collection of great self-care ideas.

But here is the thing – Only write down the activities that actually bring you joy. A self-care activity like pet an animal is a game changer for so many humans, but it just doesn’t bring me joy. I am not the most fond of animals (I can feel some of you getting offended by this), but petting animals is just not my thing. And this is why that activity wont go on my list. Choose activities that are aligned with your personality.

Also, if you are trying to incorporate self-care activities that you can do free of cost, check out Self Care Activities that You can do for Free!

Step 3 – Organize

Now that you have all your ideas in one place, it is time to organize it. If you have the self-care planner, you can start right away but if you don’t, just sketch out a table with four columns and then start.

  1. Activity – Write down 1 activity from your list
  2. Repeat – How often do you need to repeat it? Daily, weekly or monthly? For example – I need to take a hair spa once a month but I intend to meditate every day. Also, face and hair masks can be done once a week. 
  3. Requirements – What stuff do you need to perform this activity. For example, to perform though logging I will need my journal and pen. Also, to do a juice cleanse I will need different fruits and a juicer or ready-made juices.
  4. Feeling – How will this activity make you feel? For example, doing a weekly digital unplug will make me feel more mindful and present. Going on a hike will make me feel excited and adventurous.
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Do this for every activity on your list so that you can have a sorted list of daily, weekly and monthly activities. Also, you can stay prepared for each activity when you know the requirements.

Here is how writing the ‘feeling’ section changed my self-care game. Last month, I was feeling super “blah”. Like everything was going great but I was just not feeling great. So I went through my self-care activities list and found one activity that would make me feel content and at peace – going to the Ganesha Temple in our city. I immediately got psyched and visited the temple that evening and ended up feeling so peaceful and content with my life.

Step 4 – Routine & Track

It is time now time to structurize your routine! The Self-Care Planner has three sheets – daily, monthly and weekly self care sheets. Write down all your daily activities together. And the best part is you can track your your regular progress and keep yourself accountable.

If you do not have the planner, do it in you notebook, journal or on some spare sheets of papers. Have a tracker to visually see yourself progress.

My daily activities currently include –

  • Meditation
  • Going in the sunlight before 8 am
  • Working out
  • Give one genuine compliment to any one person (atleast)

This is how I just planned my self-care routine, and you can too. And if you have stayed patient and come here till the end, here is a gift of appreciation for you. When use the code – STARREADER to get a 25% discount when you buy any of these –

Let me know your self-care routine in the comments below or email me your self-care questions / suggestions at neha@mystigal.com

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