8 Ways You Can Start Practicing Self-Care Right Now, According to Therapists
Mental health and wellbeing is very close to our hearts, and while we truly aim to have an always-on approach to covering all aspects of mental health, we have chosen to shine an extra bright light on #WorldMentalHealth today, and for the rest of October.
We bring you The Big Burn Out — a content series made up of honest personal essays, expert advice and practical recommendations.
There's no one way to practice self-care. As the name suggests, it's highly individual — whatever makes you feel your best, that's what you should do. Still, we were curious what experts recommend to their own patients, so we spoke with two therapists: L.A. Barlow, doctor of psychology at Detroit Medical Centre, and California-based doctor of psychology Alisa Ruby Bash.
Dr. Barlow explained that she tailors her self-care recommendations to each patient's interests. "What one person finds relaxing and a good form of self-care, may not be good for another person," she told POPSUGAR. For example, you might find it helpful to spend a few days alone (maybe even travel alone!), while someone else prefers to surround themselves with friends and family.
"I recommend that patients make a list of the top 10 things they would like to try if they loved themselves twice as much as they do now," Dr. Bash said. "Most people know what they need to do for themselves that will make them feel happier and more loved. It's a matter of actually doing the things that we know we need to do." So before you even delve into what kind of self-care you need in your life, try thinking about the things that make you feel most content. At the end of the day, you can always seek out help from a medical professional if you feel like you're struggling to find answers. In the meantime, here are a few ideas from Dr. Barlow and Dr. Bash to get you on a road to self-care.