One of the best things you can do for yourself when you’re going through a stressful time is to take excellent care of yourself and practice some self-care. Self-care helps alleviate anxiety and fear. It also helps you feel nourished and supported. And in uncertain times, it also empowers you because self-care is something that’s completely under your control.
What self-care is
According to the dictionary, self-care is about protecting your own well-being and happiness. It’s something you do voluntarily that nurtures you in some way. It is anything you do that brings you happiness, nourishment, and/or comfort.
What self-care is not
Self-care is not something you force on yourself or do because somebody else wants you to. It’s also not something that drains you or you feel obligated to do or that becomes one more thing on your to-do list. It is also not using any kind of substance/behavior to avoid/numb/distract/etc. yourself.
Self-care is what you decide it is
There’s no one-size-fits-all. What may look like self-care to someone else may not be self-care for you, and that’s okay. You know yourself best. So think about what you most need to feel calmer and better about life right in this moment (that doesn’t include abusing any substance/behavior), then go do that for yourself.
The benefits of coloring for stress relief
Coloring helps clear your head, according to a psychologist friend of mine. When you’re in fear and anxiety, you’re in fight-or-flight mode, which means: 1. your body is getting flooded with biochemicals that keep you at high-alert, and 2. the emotional part of your brain is the one calling the shots.
But the simple act of coloring (moving the crayon/marker/pencil to color within the lines, recognizing forms and shapes) activates the logical, thinking part of your brain. That’s an excellent thing because it slows the biochemicals flooding your body from the emotional reaction, which 1: brings your body back down into a more normal state, and 2. makes it easier for you to think rationally so you can make better decisions.
Get a free ebook
I’ve designed a special ebook that includes activities and coloring pages from Color Your Way to a Life You Love: Heal Your Burned-Out Self. You’ll find some self-reflection and journaling activities along with coloring pages. The act of writing down your innermost thoughts does a couple things too: 1. it activates the logical, thinking part of your brain, and 2. it not only helps you see a situation more clearly but also helps you come up with solutions that would best suited to your particular wants and needs. Just click here.
How will you practice self-care today?