9 Simple Self-Care Ideas To Implement Right Now

I don’t know about you, but I am over “self-care” advice that tells me I need a bubble bath, a glass of wine, or to pray/meditate more. 

Also completely not into suggestions that involve tons of cash or lots of pre-planning, like a spa day or a weekend getaway. 

You will not find that here. Instead, this list includes super simple self-care ideas to implement right now for free with zero or minimal planning.

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Drink Enough Water

Oh, come on—you knew this would be at the top of the list, right?

Spoiler alert: This may not mean 8 glasses a day.

But, I promise you if you make a commitment to consuming more water each day, you will not regret. It is like magic, truly.

One easy way I have started doing this myself is any time I think “oh, I’m thirsty” instead of just getting a quick sip I drink a whole cup. It takes only seconds more, and if you do this a couple times a day you will increase your water consumption considerably. 

Get Some Sleep

As a general rule I aim to be in bed for one hour longer than the amount of sleep I feel I need. So, if I am at my best with at least seven hours, I block off eight hours for sleep. 

I know I am a very light sleeper {thanks, parenthood} and I also wake up at least twice a night on average, so I figure adding an extra hour balances things out. 

Check here for approximate sleep needs by age.

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Establish a Morning Routine

Even if you are not a morning person establishing goals to start your day will help you to feel more on track. 

Having a basic morning routine will make your days less stressful. Knowing what to expect when you roll out of bed each morning puts you on a kind of relaxed autopilot. You can physically and mentally ease into the day instead of worrying what to do next.

You don’t need to wake extra early {get up whenever works for you} or accomplish specific tasks. The routine does not need to be elaborate, but if making a checklist helps, by all means do so. The key is to have a plan that works for you.

Eat Only Until Satisfied

Stay with me on this one. I am not encouraging you to deprive yourself of whatever kinds of food you want to eat. That is your business and yours alone. 

What I am saying is that I have never regretted eating only to when I feel satisfied but not full. 

Make a conscious decision to eat until you are no longer hungry, no matter how tasty the meal is. If you have trouble figuring this out—I sometimes still do—aim to put what looks like a reasonable amount of food on your plate and eat only that {no seconds}. 

Especially if you eat dinner close to bedtime you will be amazed at how much better you feel when you go to sleep at night not feeling sluggish from a big meal.

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Do Some Gentle Stretches

I try to make this a habit every morning while I wait for my coffee to brew. I also add a quick session with the Agents each weekday before we begin homeschooling. 

Too often folks give up on the “fitness” aspect of self-care because they feel it has to be all or nothing. But you don’t need to run three miles, take a one-hour yoga class, or hit the gym to feel better right now. 

Even something as simple as improving your flexibility over time {and working out any soreness or stiffness} is a step toward taking better care of yourself and increasing your overall body confidence.

Wash Your Hands More Often

Seriously, this is one of the best things you can do to take care of yourself. Not just in the fall and winter months or during flu season, but year round.

The Agents and I have all gotten into the habit of washing our hands as soon as we come back into the house, regardless of where we have been. 

Of course you will still have times when germs get the best of you, but I have found that since we began doing this regularly we have minimized sick time at our house.

Develop a Mantra

One aspect of my former religious life I actually miss is the soothing repetition of saying a familiar prayer. Sometimes you just want to have a calming verse at the ready, like a verbal security blanket when stressed.

So what’s a heathen to do? Consider poetry, movie quotes, inspirational writing, mythology, and more.

I have personally found that any positive words will do, as long as you have them memorized and can use them to center your thoughts and relax your mind. The repetition of the words, the simple act of sitting quietly with your thoughts, is the critical factor.


Write It Down

Those of you who know how into organizing and homeschool planning and travel I am might be surprised to learn I do not use a planner. It is just not something I ever got into. 

Instead, I clear my thoughts by making simple to do lists. I have used both paper and online notes and I don’t really have a preference. 

Writing things down allows me to mentally dismiss tasks until I am prepared to deal with them. This results in me being more productive in the moment.

Put Your Phone To Bed Early

I leave my phone upstairs when I take a shower in the evening {usually around 6:30 p.m.} and do not use it again until the following morning {usually around 5:30 a.m.}. 

The only thing I check before I go to sleep is if I have any texts or missed calls from family. {A habit from years ago when my dad was first ill and that’s how I was kept updated.}

Related to this, I only have notifications set up for phone calls and texts, no social media. That way I never even see the little red button and never have to overcome the temptation to click on it.

Do you incorporate any of these ideas into your daily routine? Do you have other simple self-care ideas to implement right now? What works for you?

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This Post Has 32 Comments

  1. Avatar
    Kathy

    I love this! And in fact, I do a lot of these, but I really love your simple suggestions like drinking a full glass instead of just a sip.
    I also don’t have any social media on my phone, with the exception of FB Messenger as that’s proved really useful when traveling in other countries. So much cheaper than texting!
    Kathy

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      The water thing was kind of like an aha moment for me. 😀 I like having social media on my phone, especially in the morning when I’m already balancing a cat and a cup of coffee, but I prefer to have the notifications off so I never feel like I “have to” check and see what just beeped. Definitely true about messenger vs. texting. Thanks so much for stopping by, Kathy. ❤️

  2. Avatar
    Laura

    This is very practical. I agree that self care has become synonymous with face masks, candles, and bubble bath. Sometimes it’s just daily maintenance that will help you to feel better overall rather than occasional pamper nights when you’ve let things build up for too long.

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      I feel the day-to-day stuff is so much more important. I mean, I still like planning special outings and such occasionally, but most of our lives are spent doing more mundane things. We need to remember to take care of ourselves every day, not just once a week or once a month because it’s on the calendar.

  3. Avatar
    Joi

    Definitely necessary to have self-care! Amazing post!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      Thank you so much for stopping by, Joi. ❤️

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      Sometimes we all need a little reminder. 😉 Thank you for stopping by. ❤️

  4. Avatar
    Elizabeth

    Hey Valerie, this post reminds me to look after myself the best way I can. My favourite part of your post is when you mentioned having a mantra, I have never heard of that before, but curious to try it out. It is really similar to affirmations, Love it and I have noted it down!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      They are very similar to a daily affirmation and great to have memorized so you can use them to center yourself any time you need. Thanks so much for stopping by, Elizabeth. ❤️

  5. Avatar
    Rachael

    I have trouble keeping track of my lists, but either email them to myself, write them in an app or jot them in a notebook. Getting them down definitely helps! And stretching – I so need to do more stretching!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      I e-mail notes to myself all the time. I might forget to check the notes app, or I might lose a post-it, but I *always* check my e-mail in the morning. ❤️

  6. Avatar
    Rachel

    Great list! I totally agree with all of these. I know I need to stretch more often!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      I have honestly been slacking on stretching lately and I can totally tell! I need to get back into it.

  7. Avatar
    Brittany

    Love this! I think we can all use some more self care. It’s so important to take time for yourself.

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      It’s hard to prioritize sometimes, but so important.

  8. Avatar
    Lucia

    Thank you so much for sharing, Valerie. I am such an advocate for self-care especially as I am into my 50s. We forget sometimes to do for ourselves. This was a great reminder!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      I think everyone needs a reminder every once in a while. I know I do.

  9. Avatar
    Eva Martin

    I love these tips! I agree 100% that staying hydrated and getting enough sleep is crucial to overall wellbeing!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      The water thing definitely blew my mind. I didn’t realize how much of an effect it could have until I started making a conscious effort to drink more.

  10. Avatar
    Corinne

    How good is sleep? In fact, I’ll go to bed early tonight for self-care. I can’t remember the last time I went to bed this early! Thanks for this list, Valerie!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      I love going to bed early and getting up early. I feel so much more rested than when I try to stay up late and sleep in. Luckily, everyone in my house agrees and we are all ready for sleep by 9:00 p.m. 😀

  11. Avatar
    Holly

    Ten years ago I started drinking more water. Not only did it help my skin (I’m 37 and people always tell me I look 10 years younger) but it also made me feel better. I always tell people to start with water!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      And it is so easy to do! Once you get in the habit it just becomes automatic.

  12. Avatar
    Shani Moushon

    Great list: I am going to try #6 Wash my hands more often, and I really need to work on #9, I spend way to much time on my phone.

  13. Valerie
    Valerie

    The hand washing has definitely helped us a lot. Sometimes I am still tempted to putter on my phone at night. But for the most part it was just a matter of getting in the habit of leaving it in another room.

  14. Avatar
    Julie Plagens

    I do a lot of these things. I have found the best mantras are ones that are from the Bible. I love to reemphasize the truth with scripture. Stretching also really helps!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      I am glad that you find many of these ideas useful as well. Thank you so much for stopping by. ❤️

  15. Avatar
    Lina

    I love this! Self-care is definitely more than just a bubble bath and manicure/ pedicure.

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      Thank you, Lina. I love a good pedicure, too, but that is not what is going to sustain me day to day. Glad you stopped by. ❤️

  16. Avatar
    Nilakshi

    Love this wonderful easy self care tips to implement right now. Thank you so much!

    1. Valerie
      Valerie

      Thank you for stopping by, Nilakshi! ❤️

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