120 Best Self Care Ideas (for everyone & every situation) — Minimize My Mess (2024)

Written By Ema Hidlebaugh

Jump to Self Care Ideas

Self care likely conjures up images of cucumber slices on your eyes at a swanky spa, but that’s only one type of self care.

Self care is more than a trendy buzz word - think of it as the action step of self love and self respect.

It’s the antidote to hustle culture and society’s obsession with productivity.

We all deserve to rest, reset and refine.

As a messy minimalist, my personal favourite type of self-care is to simplify my life and make it easier.

You’ll find the right self care practice for you, with this gigantic list of 120 self care ideas (…with lots of non-generic, unique ideas you won’t see on most self care lists).

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I may receive a commission if you buy something via a link - here’s my full disclaimer

  • Self care 101

    • What is self care?

    • How do I start self care?

    • What is the best self care?

    • What is the most important part of self care?

    • Who is self care for?

    • Why is basic self care so hard for me?

    • How do I find time for self care?

    • Should self care always be enjoyable?

    • Self care tips

  • 120 Best self care ideas (for everyone & every situation)

    • 10 Best self care ideas for spiritual wellness

    • 10 Best self care ideas for physical wellness

    • 10 Best free self care ideas

    • 10 Best extravagant self care ideas

    • 10 Best self care ideas for professional wellness

    • 10 Best self care ideas for parents

    • 10 Best quick self care ideas

    • 10 Best self care ideas for introverts

    • 10 Best self care ideas for bad days

    • 10 Best unique self care ideas

    • 10 Best self care ideas for busy people

Self care 101

What is self care?

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Self care is the regular practice of intentionally engaging in activities to take care of your physical, mental, spiritual, social, professional and emotional health.

This can include things like:

  • Getting enough sleep and rest

  • Eating things that make your body feel good

  • Moving your body in ways that you enjoy

  • Taking breaks from work

  • Being creative

  • Spending time in nature

  • Practicing mindfulness

  • Feeling grounded

  • Connecting meaningfully with loved ones

  • Setting boundaries

  • Engaging in activities that bring you joy

Self care is not just about pampering yourself (although that is highly encouraged); it's about making sure you're taking care of your body and mind, so you (and by extension, your loved ones) can live a happy and fulfilled life.

Self care is a vital part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle but is often overlooked.

Taking the time to prioritize yourself and practice self care can have significant positive impacts in every part of your life.

It may feel counterintuitive but prioritizing time to be “selfish” and fill up my cup, helps me be the best version of myself and do the most good in the world.

How do I start self care?

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You’re off to a great start by reading this!

Pick a couple of things that you’d like to try from the self care idea lists below, and make a note of them.

  • Step 1 - pick ONE act of self care from your list to do first

  • Step 2 - ask yourself these questions

    • How did you feel before and after?

    • Would you want to do it again?

    • If so, how often would you like to do it?

  • Step 3 - if you want to do it again, keep doing it until you find the right balance of how often is right for you

  • Step 4 - when you feel able to, add in another self care practice and repeat steps 1 through 3

  • Step 5 - Keep adding regular self care in to your normal routine until you feel more balanced time, health and happiness wise.

What is the best self care?

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It’s important to remember that self-care looks different for everyone and is not one-size-fits-all.

For instance:

  • Taking the time to cook a wholesome homemade meal may be ideal self care for one person

  • Whereas treating themselves to a takeaway one night a week may be kindest self care for someone else

It’s important to not yuck anyone else’s self care yum.

It may require some trial and error to find the right self care routine for you.

What is the most important part of self care?

I think consistency, kindness and balance are the most important parts of self care.

  • Consistency is key to maximizing the positive effects of your self care routine. Most of us will likely have to rely on dedication, determination and discipline when we first start out on a self care routine. It may not feel that important in the grander scheme of things, but showing up for yourself on a regular basis will rewrite how you think about yourself.

  • This surge in kindness towards yourself will then keep you consistent with your self care because you genuinely believe you deserve it (which you do, I promise).

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  • The balance comes in to play a little later…

    • Remember how I said that self care was intentionally taking care of your physical, mental, spiritual, social, professional and emotional health?

    • Imagine them as six cups, some are full, some are empty and some are somewhere in between.

    • Personally, I don’t think it’s possible to have all six health cups full at once. Perfection is not my goal, balance is.

    • The key is to find balance between the health cups. You get to decide what that balance looks like in your life.

      • You could focus on the health cup that’s currently most empty

      • Alternatively, you could be more like me, and have certain health cups that need to be prioritized. For instance, I’m not very good at looking after my physical health if my mental health cup is low. So if they’re both low, I’m better off at concentrating on filling up my mental health cup, rather than splitting my efforts equally between the two cups.

Who is self care for?

I love this question because it’s so often just seen as a rich lady’s pastime, but self care is for everyone!

It’s a really important way to take care of ourselves and ideally everyone should be encouraged to make it a priority.

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  • My daughter is 3 and I love that she’s going to grow up with self care being a big part of her life. We’re learning to listen to our bodies, name our emotions, take deep breaths, stretch, and pick our favourite treats/ways to relax. I love it when she says, “dis is soooooo ‘laxin!”

  • My husband’s go to answers are “I’m okay” and “I don’t mind” whenever I ask how he is and what he wants to do. He’s a very chill guy so I almost have to bully him in to putting himself first every now and then. Nowadays he loves his Saturday morning hikes with his friend, and we always make sure to do at least one thing that he wants every weekend.

  • In contrast, I’m much less selfless and easy going than my husband. If I don’t prioritize self care, I can easily slip into a place of resentment and victimhood. It isn’t fun for anyone.

Self care helps us all be happier and healthier versions of ourselves.

Why is basic self care so hard for me?

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There are many reasons why we struggle with self care, such as:

  • Not sticking with it - We often don’t make self care a priority, so it quickly falls off of our plate

  • It feels selfish - A lot of us were taught, directly or indirectly, that prioritizing ourselves was selfish - so it can feel wrong when you first start

  • Lack of time

  • Lack of money

  • Lack of support from loved ones

  • Lots of responsibilities / people relying on us

  • Feeling that we don’t deserve it

  • Not wanting to look inward - Self care can also be difficult because it requires us to be honest with ourselves about our needs and feelings. Taking the time to really identify what we need and how we’re feeling can be tough, and it can be tempting to bury our heads in the sand and hope that things get better all by themselves.

  • Medical reasons holding us back physically and/or mentally - Personally, I have ADHD so sometimes I struggle with basic, everyday care tasks like having a shower. In those times, I have to remind myself that the smallest acts to take care of myself count and should be celebrated. That day, my self care could look like bringing a stool in to the shower to make my life easier.

How do I find time for self care?

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If you feel like you don’t have enough time to add any self care to your routine, check out the 10 self care ideas for busy people first, as some of the suggestions should free up some time.

If that feels overwhelming, check out the 10 quick self care ideas for some suggestions that you can implement in a minute or two.

Should self care always be enjoyable?

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Ideally - yeah - self care would always be enjoyable.

However, that doesn’t mean that all self care will always be easy.

  • For instance, your first few therapy sessions might feel really uncomfortable if you’re not used to exploring your thoughts, feelings and experiences, but who knows …the immense relief of letting go of things you didn’t even know you were carrying around with you might make you walk through this life with a newfound sense of calm

  • Pushing yourself to stick with an earlier bedtime might feel boring for the first few weeks, but who knowsmaybe you’ll start jumping out of bed in the morning, laughing as you wonder “who AM I?”

  • Reigniting your love of dance may cause a few more aches and pains than you recall, but who knowsthey could be short lived as you grow stronger every week and soon feel twenty years younger

  • Setting a boundary with your Great Aunt Mildred about not discussing politics at the dinner table may feel a bit scary to start with, but who knowsit might make family get togethers a lot more enjoyable for everyone

That doesn’t mean that we should keep punishing ourselves if a self care practice is really not working for us, though.

Trust your gut and try something new if you’re not sure if the current one is right for you.

So, a more realistic description could be:

Self care is often enjoyable, sometimes challenging, but has positive impacts to your life overall.

Self care tips

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  • Get an accountability buddy - does Sally at work want to focus on self care too? You could team up to support each other

  • Start a self care journal - you could go fancy and design your own bullet journal layout …or you could just keep a note on the back of a napkin about what you’ve tried and if you liked it

  • Make it part of your daily routine - adding self care in to your existing morning, lunch, afterwork, or evening routine is a great way to make it stick

  • Assign self care to days of the week, e.g.

    • Self care Sunday

    • Me time Monday

    • Take out Tuesday

    • Walking Wednesday

    • Thankful Thursday

    • Fun thing Friday

    • Spa morning Saturday

  • Get others on board

    • Encourage your partner to get involved so you can each get out of the house for a couple of hours of solo time whilst the other takes care of the kids.

    • Or, make a pact with a fellow parent to make more time for yourselves and take turns watching each other’s kids.

    • Add it as an agenda item at a weekly meeting at work

    • Make a point of adding it to your usual catch up questions when you see your loved ones

  • Schedule it - blocking out time on your calendar to devote to self care is a great way to prioritize it

120 Best Self Care ideas (for everyone & every situation)

10 Best Self Care Ideas for Mental & Emotional Wellness

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1) Journal

Journaling is a beautiful way to get to know ourselves, be mindful, clear our heads, stay present, and find the answers to the big questions in life.

Here’s some help and inspiration to get started with journalling.

2) Find your FLOW

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Finding FLOW means finding activities that fill up your cup and make you feel energized.

Jo Rodriguez of @StraightForwardPsychology explains flow best:

“I cannot stress this enough, finding your flow is the lifeblood of a positive mindset.

Choose your flow activity and use these pointers to help you enhance that feeling:

1) Set yourself a mini goal for motivation and structure

2) Try to get a good balance of skill required and achievability. Nothing too difficult.

3) Have little check points along the way so you know you’re achieving what you set out to do.”

-Jo Rodriguez

Jo explains that a flow activity could be music, sport, gaming, work, learning, puzzles, DIY, chores, housework, cooking, baking, art, reading, meditating, going for a walk, etc.

…anything where you get so engrossed that time seems to fly by.

3) Affirmations

Affirmations are one of those weird things that I don’t understand, nor necessarily like - but I know they’re effective for me, so I do them anyway.

Here are some of my favourites if you need some to borrow whilst you collect your own:

  • Everything is going to be okay (it sounds so simple but this is what I need to hear 99% of the time and I get a wave of relief every time I say it out loud)

  • I eat food that makes my body feel good

  • My body is an instrument, not an ornament

  • I don’t chase, I attract. What belongs to me will simply find me.

  • I have enough time to do everything I want to

  • I do not waste time worrying about unknowns

  • I trust people to let me know their feelings

  • I always find a solution

  • I can do hard things

I have a list of them in my notes on my phone, and I add new ones whenever I hear something that makes me feel positive and strong.

Now that the list is really long, I don’t read them all out every day, I scan the list and read relevant ones out loud.


This is a great exercise if you want to tackle negative self talk.

Write down all of the recent mean thoughts that you can think of, and then get SASSY.

  1. Stop

  2. Apologize

  3. Self Soothe Yourself

Write your answers below each mean thought.

For me, they usually sound like:

  • “Ema, I’m sorry for judging you, I know you were doing the best you knew how”, or

  • “Ema, I’m sorry for getting frustrated with you, you’re doing the best you can”

Our name is the strongest power word we can use so include it if you want your brain to really pay attention (that’s why 911 operators ask your name, it’s the best way to get your attention back during the call)

5) Make an ‘I am enough’ list

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This is the best tip I’ve ever received from my therapist.

It takes a bit of preparation but it’s very powerful so it’s well worth it.

Start a list in your phone notes or a special journal:

  • Make a note of any compliments you receive

  • Don’t forget to compliment yourself - add things that you did well or that you’re proud of

Our human brains are wired to focus on the negative - which is why lots of us could receive 99 compliments but still focus on the one complaint.

The simple act of remembering to write down compliments or positive memories does something magical, and our brain actually starts to believe them.

After years of having a low self esteem, this is what helped me love and like myself.

6) Invest in therapy

The right therapist can help you understand your conscious and subconscious core beliefs, and their impact on how you move through the world.

Growing up in England, it really wasn’t the “done thing”. If someone went to therapy, they certainly didn’t talk about it freely.

Things were so different when I moved to Canada - everyone seemed to have a therapist, and everyone was so open and positive about it, so I gave it a try.

I learned that one of my subconscious negative core beliefs was that I didn’t want to take up too much space in this world.

Imagine how confined my life used to be, when being smaller - physically, emotionally, romantically, intellectually and socially - was my unintentional goal.

I am a kinder, stronger, happier and a more confident person thanks to therapy.

If you can’t afford therapy at the moment, I love the concept of trickle down therapy. Alyssa Davies from Mixed up Money chats about it more here.

You may also benefit from immersion learning, by following therapists that you connect with on social media (I love Jo from @StraightForwardPsychology because she swears lots and uses humour to simplify really complex ideas).

That way you can inject a bit of self care and reflection in to your daily doom scrolling :)

It’s also a great conversation starter if you feel comfortable talking to others about it, “what’s the best thing you’ve ever heard from a therapist?”

7) Set a new goal to work towards

A sense of achievement helps me build self esteem and confidence.

Here are 73 example personal goals to choose from.

8) Try a social media detox

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Take a break from social media and spend some time away from the news, drama, and negativity to reset and refocus.

9) Take a day off

If you are able to, have a day off to take a breather.

Surround yourself with loved ones, or enjoy some quiet time with yourself - which ever feels best to you.

10) Colour or doodle

There are so many fun and unique colouring books available nowadays - this secret worlds one looks magical, but this sweary motivational one is my favourite.

If you’d rather doodle, this is one of my favourite kinds of videos to watch for zen tangling inspiration (doodles).

10 Best Spiritual Self Care Ideas

1) Meditate

Sometimes I’m able to just have quiet time by myself, but sometimes I need guidance.

I love the free app Insight Timer for guided meditations.

2) Visit your “church”

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This could be an actual church, a temple, a lake, a rooftop, your back porch, the woods …any special spot that makes you feel at peace.

If you can’t think of anywhere, pick a spot in your home to create a sacred space.

It could be something as simple as sticking some inspirational photos on the inside of a cupboard door, so that you can open the door, grab a cushion, and have a special place to sit and get into a calm headspace.

3) Come up with a new morning routine

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Your morning routine can be as intricate or as simple as you want, just make sure to pick a routine that you can easily stick to.

If it’s easier, try just adding one thing at a time.

You can take this in any direction that you want, but the top recommendations often include variations of the following:

  • Hydrate

  • Nourish

  • Move

  • Cleanse

  • Mindfulness

  • Spiritual connection

  • Journal

  • Avoid technology

4) Honour loved ones that are no longer with you

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Sometimes I find it really spiritual to honour loved ones that are no longer with me.

You can honour them however feels best for you, here are some suggestions:

  • Watch their favourite film

  • Listen to their favourite music

  • Write about some of your favourite memories

  • Light a candle for them

  • Watch the sunrise or sunset

  • Call a mutual friend to talk about them

  • Eat their favourite food

  • Look at old photos

  • Talk to them

  • Write them a letter

5) Do an electronic detox

Avoid devices wherever possible for a set amount of time, set day of the week, first week of the month, etc.

6) Work through a workbook

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Two really special workbooks that I loved:

  1. Calling in the One workbook - recommended by my therapist - great for people looking for the “one”

  2. The Artist’s Way - recommended by my AA sponsor - great for creative types

7) Set boundaries

Your physical, emotional and mental space is sacred, so protect it with boundaries.

A boundary is a line that we draw in the sand. On one side of the line are things that are ok and on the other side of the line are things that are not ok.

Setting a boundary can feel like a big deal if you’re not used to it.

If you’re anything like me, you might trip over your words and list a long list of reasons, apologize repeatedly, and sweat a lot.

But avoiding boundaries causes even more discomfort - resentments build, relationships erode.

The good news is that setting boundaries is like building muscle, the more you practice the easier it gets.

To keep things simple & easy, I’d recommend having some short and sweet pre-rehearsed phrases that you can use as boundaries.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Let me give this some thought before I answer

  • We can talk about this civilly, or not at all

  • I don’t feel comfortable discussing this

  • I’m happy to take on project B, but I’ll have to put project A on hold

  • Our parenting choices are not up for discussion

  • That falls outside of my role

  • I’m not taking on any new volunteer roles at the moment

  • Not today

  • No, thank you though

  • I’m unavailable this week

  • The baby has a nap routine so our availability is 2-4pm

If you do experience any push back, remember JADE:

  • You don’t have to Justify you boundary

  • You don’t have to Argue about your boundary

  • You don’t have to Defend your boundary

  • You don’t have to Explain your boundary


ASMR stands for autonomous sensory meridian response, and is the practice of listening to different sounds (aka triggers) with a goal of relaxation and pleasant tingly sensations.

People seem to either love or hate ASMR …and they’re usually married to each other.

My husband rolls his eyes at my - in his words - “clickety-clack” videos, but for me ASMR feels like a blissful out of body experience so I’m putting this in the spiritual section.

If you love those tingles you get when someone massages your scalp, you might just fall in love with ASMR too.

I really enjoy The Wandering Present on Tiktok or Youtube, and Diddly ASMR on Youtube.

If you like it, but the slight cam girl vibe of some creators and videos takes you out of your relaxation, I’d recommend no talk videos.

ASMR Bakery is my all time favourite.

Don’t forget to use headphones to get the full effect.

9) Energy healing

Check out the wonderful @Ela_qi on Tiktok if you’re intrigued.

I can’t believe how powerful and effective her videos are for me - I feel physically different after watching for a minute or two.

She has videos for a wide variety of ailments, from the common cold, insomnia, to ADHD paralysis.

10) Create a vision board

Whether you believe it’s the intentionality and focus behind putting one together, or the universe using it as a wish list of what to give you more of, vision boards can be really powerful and motivating.

Here’s a free template to use if you’re excited to get started - you just need to pick a template you like, upload you own photos - or add photos from their stock library, and personalize the text.

10 Best Physical Self Care Ideas

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1) Qigong

Qigong is an ancient Chinese practice that blends physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation.

It is used for health, spirituality, and martial arts training.

There are loads of tutorial videos available, but I really enjoy love Yoqi on Youtube who combine qigong with yoga - with really powerful results.

Here’s their beginner routine, daily routine, and an amazing facial massage practice (I don’t really know how to explain it but my hands feel like they’re on fire after this one - but in a good way. Also, a heads up that the massage routine includes putting oily hands through your hair and on your scalp, so plan around hair wash day accordingly)

2) Dance party

Create a playlist of your favourite songs to dance to, then hit shuffle whenever you need your brain to release some dopamine and endorphins.

This can be especially effective for those of us with ADHD.

If I’m feel especially unmotivated, I just start with wiggling my fingers and toes along to the beat, then work up to a full booty bop.

3) Move your body for fun

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Whether it’s walking around your neighbourhood with a podcast, jumping on a trampoline, splashing around the pool, playing team sports, exploring on tandem bike, or enjoying a relaxing yin yoga class - focus on moving your body for fun.

4) Get it onnn

Whether solo or with other people, org*sms are great self care!

Benefits include improved sleep, a whole co*cktail of “happy, happy” hormones, less stress, and pain relief.

5) Take a cold shower

Cold showers have a whole host of benefits ranging from a clearer complexion to a healthier heart.

My Dad swears by them - he used to get every cold going but he’s rarely under the weather nowadays, and he barely sweats at all anymore.

I’m trying to work up to running the cold water for the last 30 seconds of my shower. So far I’m at about 7 seconds - this is a tough one for me!

6) Drink a glass of water

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If you’re anything like me, every cell in your body is probably crying out for hydration right now.

Have a glass of water, or better yet, treat yourself to a water bottle that will help you drink more moving forward - I love this one, but I think I’m going to get one of these as I like the idea of matching how much I drink with the time of day.

I’ve also added regular water drinking reminders to our Alexa speaker. My daughter is fully on board and loves shouting, “family water time, family water time, family water time!” until all of us have taken a chug.

7) Stretch and foam roller

My husband loves rolling around of the floor torturing himself with his foam roller.

He says it really helps reduce his aches and pains.

I tried it once and I warn you - it was owie! I definitely appreciate a more gentle stretch.

8) Take a dance class

Just think - you could find out if it really does take two to tango, or finally live out your dreams of being a breakdancer.

9) Join a sports team

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You could join a conventional sports team like volleyball, go hardcore and join a running club, try something more gentle such as walking basketball, or explore more unique sports like ultimate frisbee or roller derby.

10) Try a new hiking spot

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Google something along the lines of “best hiking trails nearby….”, and add on your favourite descriptor to make it extra fun:

…for beginners

…with young kids

…for intermediates

…for off leash dog walks

…for experts

…that are wheelchair friendly

…for best views

…for seniors

…for spotting wildlife

…with swim spots

10 Best Free Self Care Ideas

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1) Volunteer

This one may seem counter-intuitive but trust me, the warm and fuzzies you get from volunteering far outweighs any time and energy you put in to it.

My favourite way to give back is to foster dogs.

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2) Take a nap or have an early night

Sleep is a huge part of a healthy self-care routine.

A good nap is one of my go-to coping mechanisms when I’m feeling stressed.

3) Hug

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Whether it’s a friend, partner, kiddo, pet or yourself, it’s scientifically proven that hugging is absolutely lovely-jubbly.

4) Call or text a friend

Thanks to technology, we can usually chat with friends and family from all over the world for free.

My Mum had such regular phone dates with all of her besties that I knew who to ask her to send my love to based on the day of the week.

She was the happiest person I’ve ever known so this is definitely a Mummy McMillan approved self care practice.

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5) Go for a walk

Whether you like to watch nature or people, listen to podcasts or the hubbub of the city, getting out for a walk is a great form of free self care.

6) Change your bed linen

Clean sheets always feel extra special.

Side bar in case anyone else is having the same issue…

Our fresh bed linen is feeling even better these days because we discovered these weirdly wonderful pins to keep our duvet corners connected to the duvet cover corners.

We have a Murphy bed so our duvet gets packed up every day and getting tied up in extra fabric was becoming the bane on my existence.

7) Reminisce

Taking a walk down memory lane may bring back happy memories, or help us process less happy ones.

Either way, a good cry usually feels pretty cathartic to me.

You could check out the featured photos on your phone, blow the dust off of an old photo album, or listen to a song that reminds you of a special time.

8) Set your intention for the next year

I cannot believe this booklet is still free.

I fill it out at the end of every year but you can do it on a rolling basis at any point to review the last 12 months and set your intention for the next.

9) Take a shower in the dark

Play your favourite soft music, light a candle and turn off the lights for the most relaxing shower ever - without the costly spa price tag.

10) Go to the library

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If you’re a geek like me, this might tickle your fancy too.

I love the feeling of possibility that I get when I walk into a library.

What will I discover?

What cool new services have they added since my last visit? (…you can borrow national park passes from some libraries in Ontario now, how cool is that)

It’s a great way to waste away a few hours and costs zero of the dollars!

10 Best Extravagant Self Care Ideas

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1) Go for a spa day

Whether it’s a mani, pedi, facial, massage, or some other fancy treatment - it’s time to enjoy some stereotypical self care time!

2) Get a hair cut

From the scalp massage to the gloriously tacky gossip magazines, I love getting a new ‘do’.

3) Treat yourself to some collective effervescence

There’s something so special about being in the presence of amazing talent like at a concert or musical.

I love the term “collective effervescence” which refers to how emotionally moving and energetically powerful it can feel to be part of an audience mesmerized by a performance.

4) Invest

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Investing in your future can be a great self-care practice.

I’m no financial expert, but here are the main things we’ve learned in our first couple of years of investing:

  • Returns are not guaranteed, but investing in the stock market is not the huge gamble that I used to think it was. According to Investopedia, “The index has returned a historic annualized average return of around 11.88% since its 1957 inception through the end of 2021”

  • You can simplify and diversify your portfolio by investing in ETFs, which are groups of individual stocks. So with one buy, you can invest in hundreds of companies.

  • Unless investing is your full time job, you’ll probably make the most money if you touch it less. @PersonalFinanceClub shared a great metaphor: your portfolio is like a bar of soap. the more you touch it, the smaller it gets.

  • Market crashes are not usually the time to sell if you can avoid it - everything is “on sale”, so we plan to buy at these times when possible. You haven’t lost any money until you actually hit sell.

  • Robo advisors are a great way to dip your toe in to investing as they do everything for you, but their fees are much lower than the bank. We love Wealth Simple as it’s so user friendly.

The majority of what we’ve learned about investing is from Bridget Casey, owner of Money after graduation. I highly recommend that you follow her Instagram to make your life richer.

I also highly recommend our fee only financial advisor, Robb Engen of Boomer & Echo. He’s really simplified how we invest - I love his one ticket investing solution. It’s made investing so boring that I rarely look at our portfolio anymore. It’s just as easy as a robo advisor, but with less fees.

Of note - we live in Canada so these are both Canadian finance experts.

5) Mini break

If you have the means, getting away for a few days can be just what the doctor ordered.

That’s one thing I really miss about the UK, weekend city breaks were much more affordable.

My next dream mini break would be to Sparkling Hills resort in Vernon, BC.

6) Go for a fancy dinner

Get dressed up and treat yourself to a delicious treat.

If we want a really special dinner, we usually go to a restaurant that has a chef’s tasting menu.

I love that they plan the entire menu out for you to showcase their signature and new dishes.

7) Get your make up done professionally

I love getting makeovers at Sephora as you can redeem the cost of the service for the same value of the products.

They’re a great deal if you’re already in the market to buy products.

8) Replace your mattress

I can’t think of a better thing to splurge on than where you sleep - a good mattress can be life-changing.

They are my least favourite things to buy though as so many people are trying to sell you whatever mattress they happen to earn a high percentage commission on.

We ended up going with a Douglas mattress (not an ad or affiliate partner) and I really like it - I don’t wake up with aches and pains anymore like I used to with our old mattress. I think they’re a Canadian company so they might not be available in the US.

Out of lots of them, Sleepopolis seemed to be the least sleazy review site that we could find so we relied on it to narrow down brands.

9) Elevate your daily experience

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Think of things that you do every day - is there anything else that you could upgrade as a treat to yourself?

E.g. luxury sheets, a posh coffee machine, allowing yourself to buy unlimited fancy coffees when you’re out, a good quality chef’s knife, etc.

10) Splurge on quality foods

Head to a lush farmers market or posh supermarket to buy delicious snacks or ingredients to enjoy. Nom.

10 Best Self Care Ideas for the Workplace

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1) Pick a soundtrack

If you’re able to, listening to music or a podcast can make work so much easier.

If I need to focus, I blast anything by Mind amend (brainwave entertainment audio), or if I’m working on graphics to doing something mindless, I love listening to podcasts.

2) Take movement breaks

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If I’m focused on something, I can sit in the same spot all day. Not good

If I’m distracted, getting up, stretching and walking on the spot for a couple of minutes helps shake it off.

Either way, movement breaks have a positive impact on my day.

3) Get a quick change of scenery

If you’re stuck on something, try and mix things up to see if things look different afterwards.

You could take a walk around the block, or pack up and find a cafe to work out of for an hour or two.

4) Look forward to your break

Make your break a mini daily treat by doing something you love.

One place I worked had a massage chair for staff, it was such a nice bit of zen to add to my break.

You could read a favourite book, work on digital art, bring in your gameboy equivalent, etc..

5) Make the most of your break

As long as it’s not used as a way to hop on to the productivity/must work every second of the day train, learning something new during your break can be really fun.

  • Perhaps you’ve always wanted to learn Spanish? Hola!

  • Perhaps you’re fascinated by coding or flower arranging?

6) Try the Pomodoro technique

This is a flow of working that lots of people swear by.

I find it helpful when I’m struggling to focus, but annoying if I’m hyper focused, so I don’t use it all of the time.

You set a timer (a visual one like this works better for me than the one on my phone) and follow the following work pattern:

  • Round 1

    • Work for 25 mins

    • Rest for 5 mins

  • Round 2

    • Work for 25 mins

    • Rest for 5 mins

  • Round 3

    • Work for 25 mins

    • Rest for 5 mins

  • Round 4

    • Work for 25 mins

    • Rest for 15-30 mins

7) Can you improve your work environment?

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  • How’s the lighting?

  • Is your chair comfy?

  • Do you need a footrest?

  • Would adding a plant or some new photos to your desk bring you joy?

  • Would you rather be at home?

A lot of people prefer working from home - no commute, less distractions, more pjs.

The pandemic showed us that a lot more jobs can be worked remotely than we thought.

If you find working from home beneficial all or part of the time, it might be worth discussing it with your manager, or prioritizing a role that supports this.

8) Assess your work life balance

  • Do you feel able to switch off at the end of your shift, or do work stresses follow you home?

  • Has working from home made blurred your start and end times so that you’re always in work mode nowadays?

  • Do you need to devote so much of your personal time to networking for work?

Spend some time to come up with a plan on how to structure your day / week so you can switch off properly and recharge your batteries.

9) Get comfortable

There are now work pants that feel like jogging bottoms when you wear them.

I heard them referred to as fweats on Tiktok the other day - fancy sweats.

There are super soft and stretchy crisp, white shirts.

No one needs to feel uncomfortable in their work clothes nowadays.

Here’s a free guide on how to build a work capsule wardrobe

10) “What do you want to be when you grow up”?

Use these career journal prompts to help identify and understand your professional goals.

10 Best Self Care Ideas for Parents

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1) Toy rotation

Toy rotation equals calmer kids, tidier homes and happier parents.

The best thing is that this toy rotation method only takes 10 minutes.

2) Capsule wardrobe for kids

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  • Are you drowning in tiny t-shirts and up to your eyeballs in wee onesies?!

  • Does your little one grow out of outfits before they even try them on?

  • Is picking out outfits for your kids a headache?

Here’s a free guide on how to build a capsule wardrobe for kids, toddlers and babies in just one hour.

You’ll save time, money, space …and most importantly, your sanity.

3) Go for a solo staycation

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I think this is something that I may have raised my eyebrows at back when I was a “perfect parent” (i.e. had no kids) …but I recommend this to every parent I know now!

I remember the first time I felt the full weight of parenthood.

For me, it wasn’t the sleepless nights or even breast feeding struggles - it was when we all got a cold at the same time.

It sounds so silly but it had never occurred to me that you still have to parent when you’re sick.

It’s the most wonderful job I’ve ever had, but it’s also the hardest. By a lot. A lot, a lot. (no word of a lie, my three year old just handed me a string of snot as I was writing this)

And we outnumber her! We only have one! So we’ve got it easy compared to lots of people.

All this to say, sometimes a night to yourself in a nearby cheap and cheerful hotel, where no one needs to do anything, is the ultimate self care practice.

(also, screw old eyebrow-raising, judgemental me! Remember - your self care doesn’t need to make sense to anyone but you)

4) Mindlessly scroll on your phone

I’ve never been more emotionally, mentally and physically exhausted than in early parenthood, or when my daughter is sick (…which is only twice a month, for ten days at a time, during cold and flu season - thanks daycare).

If you find yourself with some solo time and you want to do a traditional act of self care but don’t have the energy to even think about slicing a cucumber - don’t feel guilty about mindlessly scrolling instead.

Sometimes we just need to decompress, zone out and not talk to anyone.

5) Have breakfast for dinner

I can’t believe that we adults have to pick, prep and make dinner every single day.

We love breaking up the monotony with breakfast for dinner every now and then.

If we’re feeling energetic, we’ll make a fry up, or if we’re feeling meh we’ll have cereal.

6) Try these if you get overwhelmed by noise

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Constantly feeling overstimulated was an unexpected side effect of becoming a parent.

I’d never felt touched out before or so overwhelmed by sounds.

I have noise reducing airpods which are amazing, but I always forget to charge them and when I’m mumming, I still need to be able to hear what’s going on.

These let me stay present and carry on conversations, filter out nuisance noise, and don’t need to be charged.

7) Try and have at least one regular solo date

My hubby hikes every Saturday morning with his friend, and I usually go for brunch with a friend or check out a thrift store on Sundays.

It’s a great foundation to build on for the rest of the week.

8) Find babysitters

Finding a babysitter that you can trust can be tough.

Try and have a few options available to you for when you need some time.

  • Local childcare / parent groups on Facebook could be a good place to find recommendations

  • A lot of our daycare teachers also offer babysitting - I love this option as Willow already knows them

  • If you know any other parents, you might be able to save money by arranging a babysitting exchange

9) Get by with a little help from Alexa

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Setting up routines in the Alexa app has been such a game changer for us.

Willow gets bedtime reminders, teeth brushing prompts, we all love hearing about the dinosaur of the day, we never miss our daily stretches and I don’t think I could get us out of the door in the mornings if it wasn’t for Alexa telling us what to do and when.

Willow loves it and always runs over to the speaker to say, “love you ‘Puter, have a nice day!”

10) Challenge yourself to seek out solutions

Very necessary disclaimer: what works for one kid won’t work for all kids, and what works for your kid today might not work tomorrow.

It takes lots of trial and error, but there are oodles of tools and tricks we can use to make day to day parenting a little easier on ourselves.

The key for me is to be intentional about seeking out solutions.

For instance, I spent months dreading bath times because they were such a pain in the bum, and feeling completely helpless about it.

I finally got fed up enough to challenge myself to problem solve.

I wrote a list of the bath time stressors and researched solutions for each.

Here are some examples of the tricks and tools we now use:

  • Ice lollies are a bath treat - watching every sticky drop of melted ice lolly run down Willow’s hand as she ran around the apartment used to stress me out way too much so now they are just a bath time treat. Baths are a whole lot more enticing when they’re super fun.

  • Add glow sticks - talking of fun, as a special treat we sometimes turn off the lights, turn on some music, and throw in a handful of glow sticks to create a disco bath!

  • Skip shampoo - so many times I work myself up about things that I’m not even sure I care about. For example, Willow hates having her hair washed but it felt like really big parenting fail to skip it, so every bath was turning into a battle. I had no idea that skipping shampoo was even an option until I read this. So I just, stopped. And the world carried on spinning, Willow’s hair is looking (and smelling - phew) more fabulous than ever, and bath times are a hell of a lot easier.

  • Set a visual timer - we slap this bad boy on the sink so that Willow can see how much time is left. It’s really changed the power dynamic. On tough days, the timer is the “bad guy”, and on good days, it’s great reminder for us all to stick to the bedtime schedule.

10 Best Quick Self Care Ideas

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1) Have a cuppa

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As a Brit, I’m legally obliged to include this one.

It doesn’t matter what the bad, bad thing or tragedy is - the first response in England is always to put the kettle on.

Take a quick moment to enjoy a warm beverage.

I love lemon, honey and ginger tea (which is not one of the approved British warm beverages, and is the reason I was asked to leave a decade ago)

2) Hit unsubscribe, unfollow or unfriend

Make it a habit to block, hide or remove negative, unwanted or unhelpful content from your feed or inbox as it comes up.

Also, if you’re feeling a bit brutal, birthday reminders are a quick and easy way to unfriend people that you no longer feel connected with.

It will only take a second, but soon enough, you’ll be surrounded by much more positive people, messages and news.

3) Be a superhero

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Channeling your inner super hero by standing in this pose for a couple of minutes can increase feelings of self-perception, confidence, and power, and decrease stress levels


I always do this pose before interviews and it really helps me.

4) Take some deep breaths

If I’m feeling blah or grr, I take three deep breaths.

Sometimes it works a treat …and sometimes I need to take a few more.

5) Do a mini stretch

Pick 2-3 of your favourite stretches to quickly do to help relieve tension.

6) Compliment someone

Taking a moment to compliment someone has big benefits for us and the greater good.

The Daily shared these five benefits of complimenting people:

  1. It makes you happy too

  2. It makes you feel more grateful

  3. It strengthens your relationships

  4. It increases your stress resilience and physical health

  5. It creates a ripple effect

7) Ground yourself

Take a minute to complete this mindfulness exercise, to help ground yourself, be more present, and shake off anxiety:

  • Name five things you can see

  • Name four things you can feel

  • Name three things you can hear

  • Name two things you can smell

  • Name one thing you can taste

8) Put your wrist under running cold water

Commonly used as a cooling or anxiety technique, this trick is one of my favourite things to do when I’m feeling off but can’t really put my finger on why.

I also find it helpful when I feel nauseated.

9) Smile

Smiles can be really powerful and are a quick and easy self care practice to add in to your life.

Try smiling for 10 seconds and noticing how it makes you feel.

Even a fake smile usually turns into a genuine one for me when I do this.

“British researchers found that one smile can generate the same level of brain stimulation as up to 2,000 bars of chocolate.”

- Ron Gutman

10) Name three things that you’re grateful for

Not all happy people are grateful, but all grateful people are happy

- Heard at an AA meeting

Try and keep a running list of things that you’re grateful for that you can look back on if needed.

10 Best Self Care ideas for introverts

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1) Say no

We introverts may need more alone time than others, or may prefer smaller gatherings.

Pushing myself to go to too many large gatherings makes me feel disconnected from my authentic self.

It’s ok to say no to things if you need to protect your energy.

Saying no makes the things you say yes to much more enjoyable and genuine.

2) Give yourself permission to ghost

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Sometimes saying goodbye to a big group can take a lot more time and energy than we have available to us.

I now give myself permission to slip out quietly if needed, followed up with a heartfelt toodle-do-love-you text.

People who mind don’t really matter, and the people that matter really don’t mind.

3) Take mini moments to yourself

If you’re at a gathering and need a breather, you could become the resident dog’s BFF, you could say you’re going to get some air, or you could sneak in a faux bathroom break.

A few moments to yourself will hopefully help you reset and feel better.

4) Take an activity

If large get togethers feel stressful, you may benefit from taking an activity to help distract you.

Things like knitting, reading or a jigsaw can give you some mental “alone time”, even when you’re in a group.

5) Don’t be afraid to suggest smaller activities

As I’ve gotten to know myself better, I’ve learned that I much prefer movie or brunch dates to big parties.

This helps me be social and feel comfortable.

6) Allow for buffer time

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If you need some time before and/or after social events to recharge your batteries, don’t forget to build it in to your calendar.

7) Know your limit and play within it

Notice how you feel in relation to how many events you attend in a certain time period.

For instance, we like to only arrange one get together a weekend.

Two hangouts in a weekend doesn’t sound too exhausting, but squeezing them in between rest, hobbies and chores made our weekends feel too short.

Work out what’s best for you.

8) Start a new series

Whether it’s a book, movie or show series, there’s a something a little magic about having a whole saga to consume for when you need to retreat from society for a mo.

9) Show your best friends how much you care

Contrary to popular belief, we introverts often have lots of friends and acquaintances, but there are usually only a couple of special people in our inner circle.

Arrange something to show how much you appreciate and value them - it could be something extravagant like a whole treat day, or something simple like a thoughtful text.

Nurturing these relationships strengthens our connection, and makes us feel good too.

10) Dodge small talk

We introverts usually prefer deeper conversation rather than awkward small talk.

Next time you find yourself feeling drowned by chit chat, consider changing the direction of the conversation with one of these questions instead.

10 Best Self Care Ideas for Bad Days

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1) Face your fears

When I’m feeling down, I try to identify one or more of my fears and then do this exercise:

  1. Write down your fear

  2. Thank your brain and body for feeling this fear as a way to protect you

  3. Write down the opposite of your fear (whether you believe it or not)

  4. This is your counter argument

  5. Whenever you feel that fear crawl over you, say your counter argument a few times - preferably out loud

Here’s an example of a fear that comes up for me all the time:

  • Fear: People don’t want to read what I write

  • Counter argument: People want to read what I write

Do I sound silly and egotistical saying to myself in increasing volume and intensity, “people want to read what I write, people WANT to read what I write!”…?

I sure do.

But it soon squashes my fear and gets me back to writing.

2) Contact one of your safe people

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When I’m in the thick of it, I forget that I have people and resources that I can turn to.

So I have a list in my phone notes of people and places that I can reach out to when I need support.

To avoid trauma dumping, I check in with them first to see if they have the time and capacity to listen today.

I also let them know if I’m open to hearing advice, or if I just need a sympathetic ear today.

3) Rewatch your favourite show or movie

My go to “closest thing to a hug” show is Queer Eye.

I cry buckets of therapeutic tears every episode and always feel like there’s more love in the world after watching it.

Rewatching our favourites feels safe and comforting.

4) Do something nice for someone else

Switching my focus from my pain to someone else’s joy works surprisingly well for me on my blue days.

If you feel able to, think up a thoughtful gesture for a loved one, or a random act of kindness for a stranger.

5) Use social media for good

Save your favourite Tiktoks/reels/posts to a folder called “cheer up” and watch them back on tough days.

They can be funny or heartwarming - anything that might lift your spirits when needed.

6) Wallow

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Sometimes the best thing I can do on a bad day is to put on something cozy, eat something comforting and let myself feel my feelings.

I find that the more I accept and embrace my feelings, the quicker I can move through them.

Sometimes I’ll watch a sad movie to help “unlock” my feelings.

7) Give yourself what you need

A somber but freeing realization as I got older is that we’re all going to disappoint each other at some point.

We’re complicated, complex, selfish beings.

Pair that with the fact that we can’t read each other’s mind - and we’re bound to get things wrong now and then.

I’m realizing more and more that the person that swoops in to save me, sometimes has to be me.

(Miley explains it best)

Ask yourself these two questions:

  1. What do you need?

  2. Is there someone that directly ask for help with this, or alternatively, is it a need that you can fill for yourself?


  • Let’s say you wish someone would pop over with soup - is there someone that you could ask for soup, or, can you order some to be delivered?

  • Maybe you’re feeling really anxious, and just need to hear that everything is going to be ok - is there someone that you could ask to say that to you, or, could you try saying it out loud to yourself?

8) Consider your hormones

You’d think that if something happens every month for decades in a row, I’d be prepared and expect it.


Every 28 days or so, I am completely flabbergasted that I don’t actually want to divorce my lovely husband, and I’m not actually a worthless pile of poop, I am “just” hormonal.

If you menstruate or deal with any other hormone fluctuations, and are feeling really low, this is a gentle reminder that they could be linked.

The knowledge doesn’t help the symptoms much, but it helps me mentally and emotionally, to separate those uncomfortable and sometimes scary thoughts and feelings from my true self.

9) Just add water

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This was a tip I heard in my Mum group, but why should babies and kids get all the fun.

“Just add water” is now part of my regular self-care routine for days when I’m feeling off.

I ask myself if I need any of the following:

  • Bath

  • Shower

  • Swim

  • Hot tub

  • Steam room

  • Glass of water

  • Cup of tea

  • A walk along the water

  • Skimming rocks at the beach

  • An emo walk in the rain

  • Hydro massage chair

  • Paddling pool in the garden on hot days, etc.

10) Level-up your cocoon

If you want to get in to optimum cocoon mode, I recommend these two:

  1. Fuzzy weighted blanket

  2. Magical meditation mask that blocks out all the light but doesn’t squish my eyes

10 Best Unique Self Care Ideas

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1) Pull a card

For self care inspiration, try this pack of 52 stress-less & selfcare cards which were developed by a team of therapists, counsellors and yogis.

2) Reconnect with younger you

Think about things that made you happy as a child / teenager:

  • Are there any hobbies that you’d like to take up again?

  • Are there any old adverts that you’d like to search for on Youtube?

  • Are there any retro toys that you think your little one might enjoy too? (check out ebay!)

  • Any idea what your first celebrity crush is up to now? Let’s get a a’googling that one

  • Have you listened to any nostalgic albums recently?

  • Do you want to rewatch the first ever movie that you saw at the movies?

  • Are there any old cartoons or kid shows that you’re curious to find clips of?

  • Is there an old fashion favourite that you want to reintroduce to your wardrobe? 12 year old me is so happy about the 90s fashion revival!

3) Use this free journal prompt generator

Take a few moments a day to answer the daily prompt on this free journal prompt generator.

4) Self care whilst you sleep

A unique self care idea is to improve your day before it’s even started.

Try one of the following ideas that I learned from Tiktok:

  1. A zen start - Set an alarm 20 minutes before you need to wake up. Grab your headphones, hit play on a guided meditation (this one works great for me), and then go back to sleep. You’ll wake up feeling well rested and excited to start your day. Check out the original Tiktok by @PartTimeWellness

  2. A cuddly start - Set an alarm 10 mins before you need to wake up. Roll over for cuddles and snooze some more (apologies, I can’t find this Tiktok, but will be sure to link it I do).

5) Float

You don’t hear about float therapy that much nowadays but there’s still plenty of float houses around.

I expected it to be more spa like and relaxing, with lovely warm water, but the water is actually body temperature to help make you feel like you’re floating in air.

For me, the result is more of a meditative experience.

I always leave feeling really “unlocked” and creative.

I did one float during my pregnancy and halfway through I was overwhelmed with feelings of love, and how it would feel to hug my daughter.

It was really special.

6) Go for a boat ride

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I don’t know why, but there’s something about being on a boat that feels like vacation to me, so it’s always a treat.

Here in Vancouver we have some affordable options to pick from as there’s a sea bus that crosses the Burrard inlet every 15 minutes, and lots of cute little aqua buses ferrying people to and from Granville Island.

When I lived back in the UK, one of my favourite things to do was to rent a little rowing boat on the canal close to my Dad’s house.

7) Write your dream life

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Think of it as a vision board, but in story form.

  • Where do you live?

  • Do you work?

  • Are you in love?

  • What do you do for fun?

  • Who do you spend time with?

  • What’s your favourite part of your dream home?

  • What car do you drive?

  • How much money do you have?

Expand on your dream life story as much as you want.

8) Be too much

A lot of us have been told that we’re too much over the years, but nowadays, being too much is all the rage!

And the best thing about the internet is that no matter how weird we think we are, there’s always millions of fellow gorgeous weirdos out there for us to connect with.

  • Are you trying to keep your dog sweater knitting obsession quiet because you think your sister in law with make that face?

  • Are you trying to blend in with the rest of society instead of wearing your hair in the vibrant rainbow colours of your dreams?

  • Do you want activate full cat lady mode and get the kitty cat wallpaper you’ve been eyeing for months?

  • Are you too scared to paint the exterior of your house bright pink because of the snooty neighbours two doors down?

  • Do you want to start a Tiktok account where you recreate popular dance trends whilst dressed in full C-3PO cosplay, but think Barbara in Finance might judge you?

Caring what people think is soooo 2019.

So have a think about whether there’s any part of yourself that you’ve been keeping small, that you’d like to bring out into the light.

Embrace your wonderful, wonderful weirdness.

9) Start a collection

I know, not the usual suggestion from a minimalism site. However, minimalism is all about letting go of what you don’t need, and celebrating what you love.

Collecting items is fun because there’s the thrill of the hunt, and the huge boost of happy hormones when you strike gold and find a new addition for your beloved collection.

Is there anything that you’d love to start a collection of?

  • Perhaps you’re a music enthusiast so would love to hunt for old records

  • Maybe you love to travel so want to get something small from every place you visit

  • If you want to get outside, you could collect items you can find in nature …like sea glass or rocks that look a bit like hearts

  • If you don’t want to spend too much, you could start collecting something that’s regularly found in thrift stores such as salt and pepper shakers or Fiesta cookware.

10) Find a new friend in bed

I just don’t think we should gate keep this anymore.

The best perk of being pregnant was sleeping with one of those big giant body pillows!

This is a U shaped one and this is a C shaped one.

I thought I’d be a U pillow kind of girl but I ended up returning it and ordering a C shaped one instead.

People seem to either love them or hate them so you’ll often see them available at a fraction of the price on FB marketplace.

It takes up a little too much space to use every night but if Sean is away, I’m feeling under the weather, or I need a really good night’s sleep I get to bring him out for some spooning.

Best. Sleep. Ever.

10 Best Self Care Ideas for Busy People

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1) Create a capsule wardrobe

Whenever someone says they’re exhausted and overwhelmed, a capsule wardrobe is always my number one suggestion.

A capsule wardrobe may seem insignificant in the grand scheme of life, especially to those who don’t consider themselves fashionistas - but trust me, capsule wardrobes are the key to embracing simplicity in all areas of life.

No other quick win has such a huge, positive knock on effect to confidence, overwhelm, chaos, clutter, and daily routines.

I call it the capsule wardrobe snowball, because it inspires you to continue simplifying your life in other areas too.

This free step by step capsule wardrobe guide makes it easy, and the best part is that it only takes 2 hours.

2) Minimize

Physical clutter breeds mental clutter.

It makes us late, it makes us lose things, it causes arguments, it makes other chores like cleaning take so much longer (here’s a full list of the surprising problems that clutter can cause us).

Letting go of things that you no longer use or love is one of the best things you can do to improve your day to day life and stress levels.

Follow the Minimize My Mess Method to make decluttering easy (there’s even a free interactive decluttering tool to make it even easier).

3) Organize

Once you’ve let go of things you no longer use or love, it’s nice and easy to find a logical and labelled home for everything you want to keep.

Click here for organizing tips and my free Organize your home in 30 days challenge

4) Make life easier

Make a list of all of the things that you don’t enjoy doing.

  • What would happen if you stopped doing them?

  • Can you just say no?

  • Can you delegate them?

  • Can you pay someone to do them for you?

  • Have you googled to see if there are any tips, tricks or hacks to make them easier?

Reduce this list as much as humanly possible.

For example - I hated folding clothes, so I came up with a new way to store our clothes.

A note on delegating

No one person can do all of the things, so try and delegate whenever and wherever possible.

Delegating is not always the easiest skill to learn though - especially if you’ve been used to taking everything on yourself.

I have to fight my urge to micromanage when I delegate.

“I do it this way, so you should too" …is not a good look.

The best way I’ve found to properly let go of ownership of a task is to communicate clearly that they now lead this entire process from start to finish.

E.g. Say my husband was going to take over cooking dinners in our home…

This is what it would look like if he’s taken on full ownership of the task: He would research recipes, come up with a meal plan that takes in to account all of our preferences, check inventory in the kitchen, write a shopping list, check budget, get groceries, prep, cook, serve, store leftovers, etc.


This is what it would look like if he was just a helper for one of my tasks: Him asking me to find him a recipe five minutes before dinner time.

5) Add downtime to your calendar

Find a window in your schedule for you time, even if it’s just for 15 minutes - then set it as a reoccurring meeting.

Keep carving out reoccurring downtimes wherever possible until life feels less frantic and overwhelming.

6) Order take away

120 Best Self Care Ideas (for everyone & every situation) — Minimize My Mess (57)

If you’re able to, pay for convenience whenever you can during this busy period of life.

Your time and energy levels are very valuable.

7) Do something creative

120 Best Self Care Ideas (for everyone & every situation) — Minimize My Mess (58)

When life gets busy, our creativity is usually the first thing to get shelved, so taking some time to be creative can be very therapeutic for those with busy lives.

8) Make it entertaining

If you’re spending a lot of time commuting, doing chores, cooking, doing repetitive tasks, etc., upgrade your day to day life with some entertainment.

Find some great podcasts, download some fun audiobooks, make a playlist of your favourite songs, and treat yourself to some great headphones (I love my AirPods) …to add more joy to your day.

9) Build a second brain

I first learned this term in the comments section of this Tiktok.

In that video it was advice being presented to people with ADHD, but I feel like lots of people would benefit from it.

The idea is to transfer information from your brain and then record it externally (to a checklist, instructions, post it note, etc.)

Our brains do a lot of executive functioning in the background in order for us to live life fairly easily and seamlessly.

The more we have on our plate, the more the background executive functioning will be negatively impacted.

So the less executive functioning your brain has to do on low level tasks - the better. It saves energy for more complex tasks.

That’s why overly simple things like a packing checklist, a daily morning to do list posted by the front door, and a bedtime routine set up in the Alexa app can been really powerful, and make life feel a lot easier.

10) Make a To Don’t list

120 Best Self Care Ideas (for everyone & every situation) — Minimize My Mess (59)

We’re all painfully familiar with to do lists, but have you heard of a To DoN’T list?

If you’re anything like me, you have so many ideas you want to try and things you want to do.

There is a limit to how many priority tasks we can be working on at any one time though.

That’s why I only concentrate on three tasks at a time.

Everything else goes on the To DoN’T list.

  • My brain is happy because it’s written down somewhere safe, I don’t have to keeping thinking about it over and over.

  • And my overwhelm is happy because there’s only ever three things I need to be thinking about.


We’ve covered what self care is, why it’s so important and why so many of us struggle with it.

I hope that these 120 self care ideas have shown that there are several practices that you could add to your life - my fingers are crossed that a few jumped out to you so much that you’re eager to get started right away.

You deserve it.

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120 Best Self Care Ideas (for everyone & every situation) — Minimize My Mess (2024)


What are the 7 pillars of self-care? ›

Each method of self-care fits into one of the seven pillars: mental, emotional, physical, environmental, spiritual, recreational, and social. A well-balanced self-care routine involves each of these, so avoid restricting yourself to just one or two pillars.

What are the activities that heal your mind? ›

8 mental health exercises to boost your emotional wellbeing
  • Mindfulness. Mindfulness isn't just a buzzword. ...
  • Meditation. ...
  • Gratitude journaling. ...
  • Breathing exercises. ...
  • Physical activity. ...
  • Cognitive reframing. ...
  • Sleep. ...
  • Connect with others and with nature.
Sep 11, 2023

What are 10 ways to take care of yourself? ›

10 Small Ways to Make Taking Care of Yourself Just a Little...
  1. Get personalized vitamins delivered right to your door. ...
  2. Start the day with a clear mind. ...
  3. Go through some positive affirmations. ...
  4. Use a guided meditation app. ...
  5. Schedule workouts in your calendar like meetings. ...
  6. Write in a journal every night.

What are 5 self-care strategies? ›

Here are some self-care tips:
  • Get regular exercise. Just 30 minutes of walking every day can boost your mood and improve your health. ...
  • Eat healthy, regular meals and stay hydrated. ...
  • Make sleep a priority. ...
  • Try a relaxing activity. ...
  • Set goals and priorities. ...
  • Practice gratitude. ...
  • Focus on positivity. ...
  • Stay connected.

What are the 3 R's of self-care? ›

The 3 R's of Self-Care: Reflection, Regulation, and Relaxation.

What are the 3 rules of self-care? ›

What Are The Four Golden Rules of Self Care?
  • Self-care is a lifestyle.
  • Self-care is not static.
  • Self-care sometimes involves elimination.
  • Don't compare your self-care.
Jun 22, 2017

How to heal yourself mentally? ›

Emotional healing can take place through small, subtle actions such as treating yourself to a warm bath, doing the things you enjoy, and spending time with positive people. Remember that self-care is the foundation of emotional recovery, and don't overlook daily self-care practices.

How do you rewire your brain for healing? ›

Rewiring your brain might sound pretty complicated, but it's absolutely something you can do at home.
  1. Play video games. Yes, you read that right. ...
  2. Learn a new language. Ever considered studying another language? ...
  3. Make some music. Music has several brain benefits. ...
  4. Travel. ...
  5. Exercise. ...
  6. Make art.
Jun 17, 2020

How to give yourself time to heal? ›

  1. Give Yourself Time. Healing from whatever deeply hurt you can take a lot of energy and time. ...
  2. Talk about it. Every time a deal or relationship doesn't go as planned, don't just keep it to yourself. ...
  3. Make Up your mind. ...
  4. Don't post anything on social media. ...
  5. Make it a lesson, learn from it.
Feb 6, 2020

How to develop self-love? ›

They could be as simple as speaking kindly to yourself, taking breaks when needed, or engaging in activities that make you happy. Other self-love habits include practicing gratitude, spending time in nature, eating nourishing food, and exercising in a way that feels good to your body.

How to take better care of yourself as a woman? ›

In this article, we'll explore ten practical self-care tips that every woman can incorporate into her daily routine to make herself a priority.
  1. Practice Mindfulness and Meditation: ...
  2. Prioritise Quality Sleep: ...
  3. Nourish Your Body with Nutritious Foods: ...
  4. Move Your Body: ...
  5. Set Boundaries:

How to practice self-care every day? ›

  1. 01 of 09. Be Self-Compassionate. ...
  2. 02 of 09. Get Enough Sleep—Every Single Night. ...
  3. 03 of 09. Nourish Your Body With Healthy Foods. ...
  4. 04 of 09. Keep a Gratitude Journal. ...
  5. 05 of 09. Meditate. ...
  6. 06 of 09. Give Yourself a Daily Self-Massage. ...
  7. 07 of 09. Learn to Say No. ...
  8. 08 of 09. Declutter Your Spaces.
Jan 7, 2024

What are the eight 8 areas of self-care? ›

Therefore, self-care is not only for your well-being but for your productivity as well. Namely, there are 8 main areas of self-care: physical, psychological, emotional, social, professional, environmental, spiritual, and financial.

What are the 8 elements of self-care? ›

According to RegisteredNursing.org, there are eight aspects to self-care: mental, physical, emotional, spiritual, social, personal, professional and medical.

What are the 8 areas of self-care? ›

Therefore, self-care is not only for your well-being but for your productivity as well. Namely, there are 8 main areas of self-care: physical, psychological, emotional, social, professional, environmental, spiritual, and financial.

What are the 8 dimensions of self-care? ›

Wellness comprises of eight mutually co-dependence dimensions: emotional, physical, occupational, social, spiritual, intellectual, environmental, and financial.

What are the 4 basics of self-care? ›

Self-care includes all the things you do to take care of your well-being in four key dimensions – your emotional, physical, psychological, and spiritual health.

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