Does it seem challenging to find time for self-care, while still making time for family and friends, not to mention all of your responsibilities?
Oftentimes, self-care tends to be a more personal practice, as you incorporate small habits or activities into your individual daily routine for your own benefit and growth. Making these practices part of your daily routine will help you to feel calmer, healthier and happier.
Many self-care practices are things we do on our own, from meditation to journaling to reading a good book with a cup of tea. And there are many benefits for taking this time to yourself. Taking some much needed alone time allows your nervous system to unwind which reduces your stress levels.
If you are introverted (you get your energy from spending time alone) you may need more self-care time spent alone. And if you are extroverted (you get your energy from spending time with others) you may need more self-care time spent with friends and family.
No matter where you fall on the introversion/extroversion spectrum, everyone can benefit from both types of self-care. Just as there are many benefits to individual self-care time, there’s a lot to be gained by engaging in self-care practices with friends and family too.
For one, you have accountability buddies. Committing to a yoga class or a weekend hike with other people helps you incorporate healthy, self-care practices into your life more consistently. Sometimes knowing someone else will be there with you gives you that extra motivation to get moving.
When we commit to something on our own, especially new self-care practices, it can be easy to let life get in the way and not stay consistent.
But when we have another person, or a group of people, join us in these new, healthy habits and adventures, we stay more consistent and committed.
Engaging in self-care with friends and family also allows you to grow closer to one another. It will give you an opportunity to experience something new, and these shared experiences will likely lead to moments of shared laughter and deeper bonds.
And if you’re a little nervous about trying and committing to a new self-care practice, it usually quells our fears knowing we have a friend or family member there to support us!
Here are some of our favorite self-care practices to enjoy with your friends and family:
Look up a new trail near where you live, call up a friend (or three), and schedule a weekend morning to go hiking together. Not only will the great outdoors be grounding and rejuvenating for everyone, this is a great excuse to enjoy a lunch or dinner together afterwards!
This is a fun activity to do with a group of friends or with the whole family. Whether you are having a pool party, body surfing at the beach, or lounging on a chair in between laps, this is sure to be a relaxing and fun-filled afternoon. Be sure to pack a picnic to bring with you to stay energized and hydrated.
3. An Exercise Class
Yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, Kick Boxing, Zumba, Dance…it all becomes much more appealing when you have a friend come with you. No matter what kind of exercise it is, choose something that honors how you intuitively want to move your body and enjoy it with a close friend. Exercise classes are also a great way to meet new friends too!
4. An Art Class
Have you ever wanted to try ceramics, photography, glass blowing or painting class? You’re probably not alone. Ask around and you’ll be sure to find another kindred spirit who wants to embrace their creative side. Even if your work of art turns out not to be frame-worthy, you’ll always remember it as a fun, relaxing experience with a loved one. And you may even leave class with a few new friends as well!
Sometimes there is nothing better than a fresh, healthy, home-cooked meal that you can enjoy with friends and family. Choosing one night a week, or one night a month, to come together and cook a delicious meal can be incredibly rewarding. This is a great way to try that new, healthy recipe you’ve been saving on your Pinterest board. And an added bonus? You can even enjoy left-overs throughout the week!
As you begin to incorporate more self-care practices into your own life, think about how you can include friends and family in the process. As you take better care of yourself, you can inspire your loved ones to do the same.
Sharing that positive energy and love will help everyone decrease stress and feel more connected!
What are some of your favorite ways to practice self-care with your friends and family?