4 Self-Care Tips That Helped Me When I Needed It The Most

If you’ve been feeling sad lately, I don’t blame you. The world seems to be in shambles, and life’s everyday problems continue to happen regardless of it all. But self-care can help make it feel okay again.

Recently, I hit a brief low point in my life that I thought I couldn’t recover from. I had a pain in my chest and I couldn’t stop myself from shedding a tear every five minutes. No tone-deaf remarks of “smile, it gets better” could make me feel good. I felt hopeless for the entire day.

It wasn’t until the next day that my emotions and I were in for a surprise. I woke up feeling strong and back to my old self. I woke up feeling capable again. 

At first, I found it difficult to process the briefest sad day I’ve had. A few minutes later, I had a eureka moment. I started retracing the things I did the day before. I felt defeated, but I baked brownies. I felt hopeless, but I did my laundry anyway. I felt like breaking down on the floor constantly, but I kept my family close. 

It was a sad day in my life, but that glimmer of hope was still present—even if it may not have felt like it at the moment.

Looking back, I remember there were a few self-care things I had done to unconsciously make myself feel better again. Here are four of them.

1. I cleaned my surroundings.

When I wasn’t feeling my best, I did not expect a pile of clean bed sheets to make me feel close to whole again. But it did. There is nothing like feeling and smelling fresh warm linen against your skin when you need it most. 

Clean sheets, along with space, can do wonders in your life. Of course, it did not magically transform the sadness I felt to happiness in a split second. But it did feel like the warm hug I needed.

2. I ate something deliciously healthy.

This may sound cliché or predictable, but a good side of greens with a hint of grilled protein subsided the intensity of sadness I felt while eating it. My sister was kind enough to make me the most delicious chicken shawarma salad. 

The freshness of the vegetables made my emotions feel more balanced and the nutrition it had made me feel like everything was going to be okay. It didn’t take my sadness away, but it dulled my pain.

3. I got honest with myself, privately.

This one may seem like the hardest to do, but there is no shame in admitting your weaknesses. I struggle with this myself as well. But it was when I admitted that I had lost my strength that I felt lighter. 

I admitted my emotions were unstable, and I gained a sense of peace. I became honest about my sadness, and some of my chaotic thoughts disappeared. Self-transparency taught me that even at my lowest, I was still strong enough to use my weaknesses as a strength.

4. I cried it out.

Crying is healthy, wise, and should never be considered a weakness. When I cried out my sadness, I was released from its weight. 

Before I cried, I felt weak and defeated. During my cry, I felt like I was releasing it all. After that, my thoughts became clearer as I finally felt at peace. I wasn’t back to my old self yet, but it did make me feel like that possibility was closer than before.

After all my self-care efforts to stabilize my lowest emotions, I woke up the next morning feeling strong. I was unexpectedly back to my old self. My motivation and optimism were also back, alongside the energy I needed to genuinely feel happy again. 

The sadness still comes back in waves. But I did not expect to feel the way I do today. Turns out self-care helps in more ways than one.

If you or someone you love is experiencing episodes of depression and anxiety, BetterHelp is a great resource to connect with trained counselors who are able to give you access to the best possible treatments. 

Photo by Olena Sergienko on Unsplash


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