What does self-care mean? Any action taken to preserve or improve your health is considered self-care. Yes, this includes your mental health.
Self-care is a beloved term these days. Everyone from Instagram influencers to big-time celebrities are throwing it around. Everything seems to be considered self-care, à la the afternoon bubble bath, ordering in a shake, and that extra three hours of Netflix binging. The thing is, self-care IS different for everyone.
But with all the self-care noise out there it’s hard to narrow down exactly what that means for you. We love self-care. So, we collected our favorite books about happiness, comfort, and taking time out of a busy schedule to help you figure out what self-care means to you.
Self-care means taking a moment to look within yourself to eliminate any added stresses. So, Mary Beth Janssen put together a guide to help start self-care. The Book of Self-Care offers a number of self-care exercises from meditation or setting personal boundaries. So, if you want to start a self-care routine, but aren’t sure where to start, this is a great place.
Sometimes changing your life isn’t actually about changing your life. Gretchen Rubin had a great life, but there was still something missing. She wanted to make a change but didn’t want to upend her life. So she started The Happiness Project. This book follows her journey to doing small things to make her life just that much better. Each month she sets a new goal for herself – getting more sleep, being sillier, helping more people – and keeps track of what worked for her and what didn’t. In the end, she found that it amplified her happiness, and what is more self-caring than being happier.
Part of self-care is feeling a sense of safety, comfort, and happiness flow through you. The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking will teach you the Danish philosophy of comfort. Think about what it feels like to cuddle up on the couch, a warm sweater, a comfy blanket, and a warm cup of tea on a cold night. That feeling, that is hygge. That is self-care. We can all use a little more of that feeling in our lives, right? Us, too.
Ever think that you are too busy to make time for self-care? You will no longer have that excuse. Self-Care for the Real World, by Nadia Narain and Katia Narain Philips, is the perfect guide to self-care on a busy schedule. The sisters admit that there isn’t one specific way to practice self-care. This book isn’t a strict set of guidelines, but rather suggestions. No matter your schedule, you can find time for yourself.
We all know a messy and disorganized house can be stressful. So, clean up and get organized with The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, by Marie Kondo. You might not think that spending hours or days cleaning and organizing your home as self-care, but it is the result that is part of self-care. You’ll be shocked at how much better you will feel after practicing some of the simple strategies in this read. With Kondo’s methods, your home vibe only has one place to go: up. Look forward to a more relaxed and calm environment after learning from Kondo’s expertise. Everything will be organized and all of the things that you keep will bring you joy (just wait, you’ll get it.) So, maybe, a few days of cleaning can bring you a lifetime of happiness?