What is self-care Sunday?
It is a day when you have nothing to do, devoted to whatever you need to do to take care of your mental, physical and spiritual health.
Self-care Sunday is deliberately scheduled as your day off. It doesn’t even have to be a Sunday. It can be Self-Care Monday, Self-Care Tuesday, or any day of the week you have all to yourself with the free time to do anything you like.
You Are Officially “Off Limits”
You are “off-limits” to people and situations that stress you and demand that you put them first.
It’s time to relax, recharge and pamper yourself.
There are no set rules to doing this, but in this article, we are going to suggest 10 ways to transport yourself to self-care nirvana.
Why is Self-care Important?
A couple of analogies tell us why a regular self-care routine is important to our physical, mental, and spiritual well-being.
Unplug Your Batteries to Recharge
The first analogy is that sometimes when a device stops working, you need to unplug it and plug it back in again. There is something about letting everything go for a day that revitalizes us from head to toe.
The message is that if you don’t take some time off to “unplug,” relax and recharge, you will burn out.
Put On Your Own Oxygen Mask First
The second analogy that explains the importance of Self-Care Sunday is the one that imagines that you and your child are in a plane that is about to crash.
The plane’s cabin is losing oxygen, and the oxygen masks drop from the compartment above your seat. You must put your mask on before putting on the child’s as you are seconds from passing out. If you pass out, neither of you has a chance of living.
The above analogy shows the importance of putting yourself first. You can’t take care of others if you aren’t well.
It is an essential analogy for caregivers about to burn out, codependents giving all their energy to an addict or narcissist, or those working in high-pressure front-line occupations.
7 Benefits of Self-Care
The ancient Greeks believed that you have to love yourself first to be able to love others.
Here are 7 benefits of following a weekly self-care Sunday routine.
1. Self-Care Prevents Stress
Anything that makes you feel nurtured and soothed can help prevent stress from affecting your physical and mental health.
Chronic stress can lead to adrenal burnout, chronic disease, and many anxiety and eating disorders.
Lower Those Cortisol Levels
If you are leading a life fraught with tension, apprehension, and worry, this raises the level of a hormone called cortisol in your adrenal gland.
Your heart starts racing. You start having a “flight or fight” response.
Adrenalin floods your system with unwanted responses such as anxiety, muscle pain, and headaches. It is a reaction to real or imagined threats.
2. Self-Care Raises Your Self-Esteem
Even if you feel like your entire life is spinning out of control, one day devoted to self-care activities creates long-term feelings of well-being.
Set Healthy Boundaries
Living with a great deal of stress or constantly being at the beck and call of others makes you feel like you have lost control of your life.
Being able to set boundaries and pamper yourself at least once a week helps regain self-respect and raises self-esteem.
3. Self-Care Makes You A Better Caregiver
People who neglect their own needs are prone to feelings of resentment, irritability, and other toxic emotions. You can’t take care of others if you don’t feel healthy, optimistic, and strong.
Putting others first and neglecting your own needs put you in danger of burnout. This can lead to high-risk behaviors such as overeating or self-medicating through drugs or alcohol.
4. Self Care Allows You to Spend Time Alone
Sometimes we don’t know how we feel about a situation until we have time to process it. Time alone helps us stop over-thinking and process our feelings.
Let It Be
Stepping away from a situation can also give us the serenity to solving problems without drama. It is also quite common for a problem to miraculously solve itself once we decide to mentally leave it alone for a while.
5. Self Care Allows You to Self Soothe
The art of self-soothing is all about pampering ourselves physically so that we can feel better mentally.
Pampering means different things to different people. For some, it is spending time by a stream in nature and for others spending a whole day in bed binge-watching Netflix.
For most, self-soothing means pampering oneself with a milk bath, getting a professional massage, or even organizing your closet or desk so that you can better face the week.
6. Self-Care Improves Your Immune System
An important benefit of a good self-care routine is an improved immune system response.
Do things that promote personal hygiene, such as clipping your toenails, moisturizing your skin, and massaging your scalp.
Self-love includes boosting your immune system by drinking fresh juices, relaxing in a sauna, or getting more than 8 hours of sleep.
7. Self-Care Allows You to Become More Productive
You will be amazed by how much your energy doubles or even triples after just one day of doing nothing.
Nourishing your body with healthy foods and enjoying quiet time on Sunday afternoons can help you face the week ahead with a fresh burst of inspiration and energy.
10 Self Care Sunday Ideas
Not sure where to begin when it comes to building your perfect self-care routine?
Here are 10 ideas for dedicating your Sunday (or another day off) to putting yourself first to relax, rejuvenate and recharge!
1. Take A Long Walk in Nature
The all-time remedy for just about anything that ails you, except for maybe a broken leg, is an hour-long stroll in the woods.
Don’t care for the sounds of nature? Bring along a pair of headphones and some great music to listen to enhance your self-care Sunday stroll.
Oxygenate Every Body Cell
Forests, gardens, and mossy glades release abundant oxygen, helping you breathe deeply and feel peaceful, calm, and relaxed.
Walk for 2 hours if you want to feel great. Bring healthy snacks and a big bottle of water to stay hydrated.
Waves lapping at the shore or a waterfall are therapeutic— water bodies release negative ions that instantly improve your mood.
2. Take Off Your Shoes and Ground Yourself
One of the most healing things you can do is walk barefoot on grass, sand, or rocks.
This ancient self-care ritual connects your body’s energy centers to the earth’s healing power.
According to Barefoot Training Central, walking barefoot can improve spatial awareness, relieve joint and muscle pain, and boost mood.
3. Sit in the Sun
The best free source of healing infrared rays is available to everyone!
One of the best ways to boost your mood and rejuvenate every cell in your body is to sit in the sun without sunscreen for 20-30 minutes.
The Healing Powers of Infrared Light
Infrared light from the sun activates the pineal gland, also known as the third eye or master gland, and jump-starts the healing process.
Getting some sunshine is also the classic remedy for depression, fatigue, and that “burnt out feeling” as sun beams help your body convert Vitamin D to energy.
This suggestion to sit in the sun might be opposed to everything you have heard about UV rays, but it helps recharge the mini-battery in every cell of your body.
The safest time to sit in the sun is when it is lower in the sky: between 6 am and 10 am and after 3 pm.
4. Meditate and Let It Go
Adopting a meditation practice is a great way to relax and “get high on your supply.”
The act of deep breathing helps you empty your brain of all unwanted thoughts. This is your big chance to let all of your concerns go.
The focus on nothingness combined with oxygenation of deep breathing leads to sensations of tranquility and stillness and helps you get ready for the coming week.
Meditation allows you to unplug briefly for a while to recharge your batteries. You will feel like a new person when you emerge from a meditation session.
You can attend a meditation class online or offline. There are also many guided meditations available on YouTube.
5. Do A Social Media Detox
Spending time on social media is not that good for you. An NIMH contract study claims that too much social media use causes depression.
Reducing your use of cell phones and computers is critical to solving this problem. Looking at social media can cause anger, jealousy, and an unhealthy sense of competition.
Don’t be A Doom Scroller
Some people get addicted to “doom scrolling,” cruising online feeds to search for bad news, and feeling a rush of excitement.
This can have a huge impact on your emotional health. Guilt and low self-esteem can also result from spending too much time procrastinating on social media.
Sunday self-care day can be the test to see if you can go just one day without looking at Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
If you start panicking because you can’t spend time on social media, try listening to an inspiring podcast instead of the usual bad news.
6. Have A Bubble Bath and Do A Face Mask
When people picture a self-care Sunday, the image of a woman relaxing in a bubble bath with a face mask on often comes to mind.
Taking a long, hot bath is a weekly ritual and also one of the most therapeutic things you can do for your mind and body, along with other grooming rituals such as shaving and shaping your eyebrows.
A long hot bath in soothing Epsom salts can help relax tense muscles. Everyone can also benefit from a herbal bath containing relaxing herbs such as eucalyptus, rosemary, or pine.
Make Your Face Mask
There are many facial masks to try, but some of the most effective ones for detoxing your skin are those made of green or red clay.
You can also make your facial mask at home from 2 egg whites.
Simply apply the egg whites to your face. Let the mask tighten (about 15 minutes), and then rinse it with cold water.
This skincare routine will help your face look smoother and brighter. Also, it is much less expensive than going to a spa.
7. Cook for Yourself
Self-care Sunday should be that one day a week where you dispense with the junk food and cook yourself a homemade meal. Pretend you have a special guest over for dinner, but that special guest is you.
Cooking is an activity that allows us to practice mindfulness because if we don’t put our entire focus on creating the meal, dinner could be ruined.
You can make your favorite comfort meal, even if it is just Kraft Dinner, or you can go ahead and cook yourself a gourmet surf and turf for one.
After self-care Sunday dinner, treat yourself to going to bed early and get the rest you need for next week.
The idea is to nurture yourself so you feel happy, relaxed, and satisfied with life.
8. Keep A Gratitude Journal
The idea of keeping a gratitude journal was introduced to the masses by Robert A Emmons in 2001.
This professor, working in the field of Positive Psychology, found that those who practice an attitude of gratitude are the healthiest, happiest, and most productive individuals.
Buy yourself a special notebook, and write down 10 things you are grateful for every night. The idea is that this good energy will help attract even better situations your way.
Then write down 10 wishes for things you hope will transpire during the week ahead.
Then every self-care Sunday, look through your journaling from the past week. You will be astounded at how many of your wishes, empowered by an attitude of gratitude, actually came true.
9. Take A Joy Trip!
A joy trip means visiting somewhere you have always wanted to go, such as a local farmer’s market, flea market, or a beach.
It can mean sitting in a sunny cafe doing just nothing or traveling to a nearby park to get some fresh air. It can mean riding your bike to explore a place far away.
Exploring new territory at your own pace and window shopping boosts all kinds of chemicals in the brain that gives us a feeling of contentment and bliss.
Your self-care Sunday routine only lasts one day. However, there is nothing wrong with taking a joy trip for 2-3 days if you feel you need a little longer to let your hair down and unwind.
10. Do What’s Best for You and Builds Your Self-Esteem
The truth is that each one of us is wired differently. What might be relaxing for some people, such as listening to ASMR affirmations on YouTube, might irritate others.
If you have a thirst for adventure, hiking up a mountain might be more relaxing than strolling by a stream.
Walking hand in hand with a lover or best friend might also fit some people’s idea of perfect self-care. Sentimental types might feel positive effects from browsing through an old photo album.
It is important to note that a perfect self-care Sunday looks different for everyone. However, mostly, your sense of well-being is related to your self-esteem.
Create Your Own Self-Care Sunday Ideas
Some people practice self-love by producing long to-do lists that make them feel in control. Others achieve self-care by adopting a meaningful project such as doing a 5 K run for charity.
You can volunteer to make soup for the homeless or create a unique work of art.
Lying around and listening to great music or making a vision board might also be a way of practicing self-care.
The main thing is to practice self-care activities that make you feel the best about yourself, even if it is just sipping a cup of your favorite tea and looking out the window.
Whatever you should choose to do on self-care Sunday should be done at your own pace.
3 Important Self-Care Sunday Tips
Here are 3 tips and tricks for making the most of your self-care Sunday.
1. Schedule Time for Self Care
Spending time on self-care is just as important as any other obligation in your life. Prioritize this like you would an important meeting.
It is an important meeting with yourself. Tell yourself, “Sunday afternoons are sacred.”
Schedule your day off in your planner, and don’t fill it with other appointments. Mark your self-care Sunday as “High Priority.”
2. Set Boundaries with Others
One way to practice self-care is to protect yourself from negative people. Learn to say no.
Whether it’s your boss asking for extra unpaid effort or a needy friend or family member who wants you to be their free therapist, you need to say “not today.”
Explain that you need quality time for yourself, and if they protest or call you selfish, don’t argue. Simply name the next time when you will be available.
3. Buy Your Supplies for Self-Care Sunday in Advance
Buy all the supplies for your self-care Sunday, such as juices or a bubble bath, a day or two in advance.
You don’t want to ruin your day by sitting in traffic or in line at the cash register. This won’t take your mind off things.
If you do go out, make it your mission to finally try out that new restaurant, attend a concert, or go to a museum to enjoy some art. Spending time with best friends or taking a few minutes to write a love letter to a good friend is also good for your emotional health.
3 Final Words – Relax! Rejuvenate! Recharge!
To summarize in 3 final words what your self-care Sunday should be about – Relax! Rejuvenate! Recharge!
These are the 3 keywords you need to remember if you feel tempted to return that annoying call or get a head start on Monday’s business.
Make yourself a cup of your favorite tea and repeat your self-care mantra as necessary. They can help steer your attention away from distractions back onto what this day is about – you.