You are your number one priority

January 13, 2023

Start the new year off with your priorities in order. You are your number one priority. Your physical health and your mental health set the tone for your relationships, work life, and day-to-day interactions. Make your days easier on yourself by first prioritizing you.

Most people are familiar with ways to improve physical health such as eating healthy, getting more exercise, and getting more sleep. Mental health is a big factor in overall health as well. Mental health affects how we think, feel, act, make choices, and relate to others.

When it comes to your mental health, self-care can help you manage stress, lower your risk of illness, and increase your energy. Self-care means taking the time to do things that help you live well. Even small acts of self-care in your daily life can have a big impact.

Besides some of the items listed above that can directly improve physical health, here are some self-care practices to consider for improving mental health:

  • Try a relaxing activity. Explore meditation, muscle relaxation, or breathing exercises. There are many apps available on your smart devices that can help.
  • Write in a journal. Many find it helpful to get feelings or thoughts on paper.
  • Set goals and priorities. Decide what must get done now and what can wait. Learn to say “no” to new tasks if you start to feel overwhelmed.
  • Practice gratitude. Remind yourself daily of the things you are grateful for.
  • Stay connected. Reach out to your friends or family members who can provide emotional support and practical help.
  • Save more. Spend less. Financial struggles can be a big stressor. Work towards financial stability.
  • Explore a new hobby. Use your skills and create something beautiful. Bake a cake, paint a picture, knit a scarf, take photographs, build a shelf, etc.
  • Declutter your life. Get rid of unused and unneeded items.

The important thing when it comes to self-care is to find what works for you and commit to making time and prioritizing it. Self-care does not need to be elaborate, but it should be an ongoing personal practice. Tonight, relax in a bath, listen to music, or read a book, just enjoy some “me time”.

If things in life are getting to be overwhelming and affecting your health causing difficulty sleeping, changes in appetite, difficulty concentrating, or making it a struggle to perform usual daily responsibilities, then it’s time to talk to your medical provider.