Why is Self Help Important?
You may be wondering what self-help is and its importance in everyday life. Self-help denotes things that you can do without the help of any other person. Many times we tend to depend on someone to complete tasks that should have been ideally completed by us.
Instead of depending on someone else to do things for you, there are times when you can do them yourself. Due to this quality of self-help, most people succeed in life. They don’t wait for others, rather try all means to succeed in whatever task that’s taken up.
In such an interdependent world, self-help is a quality rarely found in individuals today. It builds self-confidence, and makes an individual mentally strong, besides instilling the power of personal choice and self-decision. However, there are certain crucial factors – paying attention to your physical health, learning to say no, being a healthy eater, getting enough sleep, identifying the things that matter to you, and changing your mindset, that helps you enhance the power of self-reliance and self-help.
Paying Attention To Your Physical Health
The most important part about self-care is your physical well-being. You would notice that when you are not feeling well, or maybe your back aches, your spirit is down, and you would not feel like doing your daily tasks. However, if you feel fresh you would start your day enthusiastically and complete tasks with self-confidence. Innumerable research shows that, following a regular exercise regimen, increases serotonin levels in our body, which makes us feel energetic.
Exercising for physical health can be any physical activity like brisk walking, jogging, swimming, or running. You need to be persistent with the activity that you do, because if you do something that you don’t love then there are chances that you would lose interest.
For the body to function efficiently it is necessary to pay attention to physical health. You will feel better if you care for your body. Caring about the physical self includes the kind of food that you eat, the amount of sleep that you get, and the kind of physical activity that you do. Eating healthy, taking medicines on time, and attending appointments are all a parcel of physical self-care.
If you are anxious or depressed try out a few simple exercises, they would surely have a positive impact on your mind. It helps you to sleep better, improves memory, and relieves stress. Even if you are not a fitness freak, just try out a few simple exercises and see the difference for yourself.
Exercise is a powerful antidepressant as it reduces inflammation, and promotes neural growth. Moreover, it also acts as a healthy distraction from your daily stressful activity thereby giving you time for yourself to break away from negative thoughts.
Learn To Say No
You may not want to hurt someone’s feelings, especially if it’s your manager. However, there are times when you should say ‘no’ to additional work because that would not just impact your mental health but may impact your work efficiency as well. And if it impacts your work efficiency, the intent of saying yes to additional work would be lost.
It’s important to understand that it is impossible to make everyone happy every time. If you say yes to everything, you would be prone to burnouts, which is bad for your emotional and physical health. Refusing to do as per the request of someone is a different form of self-care. It helps to give priority to your well-being rather than requirements. There may be several things on your to-do list, and there may be several deadlines to meet, but setting boundaries is important as it helps in whatever is required to be done now versus things that can be done later.
After a long hard day of work, you would be overwhelmed and not want to do some additional household chores, you need to say no. It’s fine to decline an invitation when you want to spend a relaxing evening at home. You don’t need to hesitate while saying a ‘no’, neither is there a need to offer an explanation or give a counteroffer. By saying a ‘no’, you may seem to be selfish and rude, but that’s unimportant, it just has to be said.
Be A Healthy Eater
Diet plays an important part in self-care, and it is your diet that you need to take special care of. If you ask around about the kind of foods that people love having, you may find answers like delicious cupcakes or juicy steaks, but frequently indulging in these foods does not mean self-care. The best gift of nature towards man is healthy and nutritious food, and it is exactly this that you should consume.
The kind of nutrients that you take has an impact on the health of the brain and the digestive tract. A healthy diet combined with good nutrition can be wonderful for the mind and body. Eating a lot of vegetables and fruits is the best self-help for the body as they are a rich source of fiber, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants.
Research has shown that there is a correlation between the feeling of positivity and having lots of fruits and vegetables. Foods like blueberries and eggplant help in improving the immune system, besides fighting inflammation, lowering cholesterol, and improving digestion. Leafy green vegetables are a great source of iron, calcium, and antioxidants that strengthens bones, improves metabolism and manages blood pressure.
If you prefer having a bland dinner, then think again. Adding herbs and spices not just increases the taste of the dish but also helps in lowering cholesterol and blood sugar levels, besides improving brain function. Moreover, the antioxidant properties of herbs and spices are much higher than fruits and vegetables. Some spices and herbs that you can try out are cinnamon, black pepper, turmeric, and saffron, besides basil and ginger.
Get Enough Sleep
Do you tend to sleep late at night and get up early every day? Do you feel lethargic every morning, and want to sleep some more? This is a common phenomenon in today’s hectic life, and it happens due to a lack of enough sleep. A healthy adult needs to sleep for 6 to 8 hours each day, and if that’s not the case it takes a toll on mental and physical health. It is said that hard work pays, but then it has its own costs.
The body needs enough time to rest and recuperate from the grueling schedule each day, and if you are sleep-deprived, you will not be able to work properly. Short naps during the day are also a good way to refresh the body, besides improving concentration levels. You need to schedule your sleep and make it a priority. It’s important to schedule your sleep and stick to it. Going to bed at a particular time every day, and preferably waking up at the same time helps your body regulate its clock.
Relaxing for some time before going to bed every night by reading a book or listening to soothing music helps in developing a bedtime routine. Avoid watching your tablet, cell phone, computer, or television in the bedroom, as the bright light can make it hard to sleep. Avoid having caffeine foods like coffee, soda, and chocolate late in the evening, as they have sleep inhibition properties.
Identify Things That Matter To You
Identifying things that are important in your life may seem easy, but in reality, it can be a challenge in practice. Self-analysis is the key here; you need to recognize things that are important to you.
There are certain questions that you can ask yourself, like who do you like to be with when you are feeling low, the kind of person you are that you would like to be remembered, and the kind of difference that you want to make in this world. The answers to these would help in shaping how you approach your living. Spend as much time as possible with your loved ones. Moreover, you need to intentionally live life the way you want to be kept in people’s minds.
While engaging in self-analysis, we go through a certain thought process on the happenings in our lives. We think whether our actions follow the values and standards that we believe in. This process of self-analysis is referred to as evaluating against our standards of rightness. Each day, we evaluate and judge whether our behaviors and thoughts confirm these standards. By using such a self-analysis mechanism you can practice self-control. We can evaluate whether the right choices are made while trying to achieve goals.
Change Your Mindset
Did you have a bad argument with your best friend, or had a bad break-up? If yes, most of the time, the negatives of the person keeps coming to mind. We tend to focus more often on the negatives rather than appreciating the beauty that is around us.
During a break-up or a fight, most of the time what we remember is how the other person hurt you while tending to ignore the beautiful things in the relationship. Even though you may tend to recall unpleasant memories, try to cherish the good times and appreciate the small gifts of life. Meditate and spend time by yourself, and reflect on the happenings that took place. If you can adopt a mindset of gratitude, it’s the highest form of self-care.
It’s all about the mindset of how you perceive happiness and success. It’s the mindset that impacts everything, right from the way you think to the way you react to the happenings around you. Your aspiration and mindset should match to achieve your goals, else it may hold you back and prevent you from reaching your goals.
Self-conversation reflects on the kind of mindset that you have. If you tell yourself that you are not capable enough to achieve your dreams, then such thoughts would seem real and would create a hindrance from achieving your goals. Upgrading your mindset is important, and hence the negative self-talk that you have needs to veer towards an empowering speech by telling you that it is possible to do this, or I got this.
Caring For Others Better
Do you tend to focus more on work and have very little time for yourself? If the answer is yes, it’s a sure shot recipe for low self-esteem, unhappiness, and a feeling of resentment.
Moreover, if you spend most of the time only caring for others, then you may suffer from burnout, which in turn will make it all the more difficult to care for yourself. Hence, you should find some time and indulge in some kind of self-care so that you are able to care for others better.
Self Care Helps In Stress Management
There may be several stressful situations that we face each day. However, not getting overwhelmed by the daunting task at hand is crucial. Just because a task may seem tough to achieve, it does not mean you get stressed out. Plan out the steps required to complete the work, and try completing one step at a time. Take some time off to indulge in yourself by getting good sleep, and eating healthy. Moreover, balance your schedule so that you have some leisure time, which you can spend with family and friends.
Being Socially Connected
Having strong social support in these hard times is a wonderful form of self care. We all need to have people to talk to when we feel lonely. Having in-person support from people around has a great impact on us, it actually prolongs our lives. Some research has shown that people with great social ties have more chances of a longer life compared to people with weaker social ties.
Motivate and Inspire
Thus self-care is a personal thing and there is no hard and fast rule, that a particular principle would always work. Things that motivate and inspire each individual are different. It’s important to find out and do things that make you feel enthusiastic. Indulge in yourself at times and do things that you love the most. Devising a plan to help yourself ensures you are managing your destiny. There are many aspects in life where the skills learned in the self-help process are helpful.
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Have a great day,