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Mental Health Peer Connections

10 Self-Care Tips

     f o r    t h e r a p I s t s

                              by Darcy Blaine, LMT

Self-care is vital for well-being and no group knows this better than therapists. Not only do you assist your clients in learning how to take better care of themselves, but you also should strive to make self-care a top priority; particularly considering the emotional nature of your profession.

Self-care isn’t a one-time deal. It’s the constant repetition of habits, that when put together help soothe you and ensure you’re operating at your best-- emotionally, physically, and mentally. The best way to do this is to incorporate self-care habits every single day. To regularly include in your day a little bit of love, and attention for your own mind, body, and

My 10 self-care activities can fit into a short amount of time with little to no cost. Pick the tips that resonate the most with you, and begin to incorporate them into your life. Carve out some time on your calendar (in ink!) for self-care and begin to reap the benefits emotionally, physically, psychologically, and in your relationships.

1.     Mid-day mini meditation. Bring a few minutes of awareness of your thoughts, feelings, and sensations. Focus your attention on breathing, and awareness of the body as a whole.
2.     Unplug for one hour. Turn off your devices or put them all on airplane mode. Free yourself from the constant dings of social media, texts, and email.
3.      Write out your thoughts. Start a daily journal writing out, without judgment, anything that’s bothering you.
4.     Know when to say no. Your health and well-being come first. Avoid stress inducing people or situations, and nix any commitments that don’t feel fulfilling to ou.
5.       Get a massage. Receiving therapeutic massage is one of the few truly healthy ways that you can treat yourself to a pleasurable experience that is also beneficial to your overall health.
6.      Create a home spa. Have a long bath, lounge around in your bathrobe, and leisurely read a favorite book.
7.        Ask for help. Anything big or small, reach out! Asking for help is not a weakness.
8.        Get physical. Whether it’s yoga, walking the dog, or riding your bike, incorporate physical activity into your self-care routine. Not only is it in the best interest of your health, but this also allows for time to focus and think.
9.       Nourish your body. Allow yourself extra time over the weekend to plan your menu for the week so that you can avoid fast, last minute choices that aren’t healthy.
10.      Get enough sleep. Some people need 8 hours of sleep and others are fine with only 5. Whatever the case for you, honor your bedtime even if it means missing out on  something fun.

I know. We’re all busy, and finding time to take proper care of yourself can be hard, but if you don’t, it won’t be long before you’re exhausted, and operating from a mental fog where it’s hard to care much about anyone, including your clients and family. When we prioritize
our self-care, we are better able to care for others.