Structuring self-care πŸ“…πŸͺ΄ β€” R Voice

Structuring self-care πŸ“…πŸͺ΄

Vivien Kretz
Vivien Kretz Member Posts: 283 ✭✭✭


Oftentimes, self-care and wellbeing are such big words. It is not so easy to determine what it means to take care of oneself when some sources might tell us that self-care means face masks and jade rollers.

I came across this nice instagram post with two intentional self-care ideas for each day of the week that are not too much and not too far away.

I personally would like to schedule self-care rituals more and think this is enriching. Especially "Motivating Monday" and "Wildcard Wednesday".

My question is: Do you have any intentional rituals towards your mental health that you practice on specific times of the week, like calling family, exercising or practicing a hobby? πŸ§˜β€β™€οΈπŸ“šπŸ•―

And do you schedule them?

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Comments

  • Kakoli Majumder
    Kakoli Majumder Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 341 admin

    Wow! This is awesome @Vivien Kretz! Thank you so much for sharing! Reading this made me realize how important it is to schedule self-care in your work week. While I do have a few rituals around work (the same ones for Monday and Friday that are shown in the image😊), I don't have any time designated around self-care. Well, to give myself due credit, I do call friends and family regularly - daily calls for parents and weekly for other family members and friends, I never consciously think of doing anything for myself. Of course, I do rest and go for walks sometimes, and even read a little when I can, but it's all very unstructured and erratic. It's a great idea to have a checklist like the one you've shared for self-care goals as well. I'm so going to put this up on my softboard!😁

  • Vivien Kretz
    Vivien Kretz Member Posts: 283 ✭✭✭

    I love how you connect with your support system on a regular basis, that really helps one to feel less alone and inspires you to keep going. πŸ™Œ

    I’m very happy that you could take some inspiration from this post as that was my main intention with it. 😊

    I, too, would like to focus more on fixed rituals this year instead of being very unorganised and frantic about my self-care.

    It is true what everyone says: Rituals create stability and help us to feel safe and secure. I am looking forward to see which discoveries we are making on our way there.

    I think what we Gotta do is move away from only planning serious and work-related things and also incorporate things that are good for our soul in the planning. 🌌

  • Andrea Hayward
    Andrea Hayward Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 943 admin

    @Vivien Kretz this is going to sound extra gooey, but I'll risk it πŸ˜… I'm so glad you found your way to R Voice. I can always count on you to post something that immediately puts a smile on face - and on a Thursday evening 🀩

    Thank you for sharing this wonderful image and getting us all to think about self-care. I do schedule time for self-care in the week. My self-care always involves moving. So it could be an hour of walking or just being in nature (There are over 800 tress where I live), spending some time with my jump rope, or just doing a workout routine at home that I'm familiar with. It always rejuvenates me. Unfortunately I haven't been able to keep up with it this month, because of several things going awry on the home front. But I'm very keen to get back to my routine starting next week.

    Another thing that I consider self-care is reading and (please don't laugh) re-watching rom coms, or any movies (could even be a Christmas one) that I'm familiar with. I guess it feels like spending time with something or someone I know. So it's very comforting. πŸ™‚

    One thing I've wanted to try forever is journaling. I've heard it really helps you vent and put things in perspective. I think I might just try it out after this conversation. Thank you! πŸ€—

  • Andrea Hayward
    Andrea Hayward Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 943 admin
    edited January 31

    I came back to this thread to see what others had to say and was a little disappointed. I think because there's been so much chatter on R Voice, this lovely post by @Vivien Kretz got pushed to the bottom. I'm reviving it because I think the start of the week is a great time to consider what this post says.

    Tagging @Shruti Turner @Gayatri Ramachandran @Omololu FAGBADEBO @Soumi Paul @Jayashree Rajagopalan @Isurika Sevwandi @Dahlia T @Azzeddine REGHAIS @suzanne reinhardt Would love to hear what you all have to say about this πŸ™‚

  • Vivien Kretz
    Vivien Kretz Member Posts: 283 ✭✭✭

    Awe @Andrea Hayward this is so amazing for me to hear. I love to have a tiny positive impact with my posts, so this makes me very happy to read. πŸ₯°

    Getting out into nature must be so relaxing and balancing, really cool. When you mentioned the word β€œjumping rope” I was thinking about how I used to use one when I was a child and it immediately made me want to get one again. πŸ”

    Sometimes, it is helpful to rely on the techniques that one already knows. So you know how it is like to go outside and schedule it, and if times become stressful, you already know how to schedule something and you won’t wait for the right moment which is always an advantage.

    Andrea, I’m going to join you on the romcom and comfort show front! ☺️When I experience a lot of stress, I always resort back to media objects that I know. And oh my, it’s so comforting. I think it is a very safe way to comfort when it is needed. I am absolutely on your side, currently watching β€œNew Girl” for the pure reason that I know all of the characters and don’t have the capacity to get to know new ones.

    Everyone who does journaling absolutely adores it and speaks so highly of it. Let’s make it an unconventional new year’s resolution to journal a few times. πŸ“

  • Omololu FAGBADEBO
    Omololu FAGBADEBO Member Posts: 192 ✭✭✭

    This is thoughtful, @Vivien Kretz . We all need to have something like this as a routine guide in organizing our schedules. Most of us are usually engrossed with our schedules to the extent that we regard Saturdays and Sundays as working days!

    One thing at a time😍

  • Vivien Kretz
    Vivien Kretz Member Posts: 283 ✭✭✭

    Isn’t it crazy how much people have to prioritise work so that personal time takes the backseat... It is great to have a fulfilling job but we all need time to recharge. That is why I shared this post with small and creative ways to schedule self-care into your days without blocking hours, some of these activities will only take a little bit of time. I hope it might help you a little bit when stressful times come.

  • Omololu FAGBADEBO
    Omololu FAGBADEBO Member Posts: 192 ✭✭✭

    Yes, @Vivien Kretz. We often find ourselves in this situation And that is why your creative post could serve as a guide. It is important that we cater to our self-care. It is the healthy person that could proceed with their jobs productively.

    Thank you, @Vivien Kretz for sharing.

    One thing at a time😍

  • Isurika Sevwandi
    Isurika Sevwandi Member Posts: 120 ✭✭✭✭

    Thanks, both @Andrea Hayward and @Vivien Kretz for this post and for adding me to this conversation on self-care. My Monday is exactly similar to what is depicted in the image and sometimes I schedule my week in advance (maybe by this Friday I schedule my to-do list for next week) and it gives me extra motivation to chase the list and tick off tasks. Journaling is something I do regularly in my digital diary, and as @Andrea Hayward has very correctly mentioned it helps you re-align your schedule and put you into perspective if you are losing focus. I never do deep work on Fridays🀣 btw, as I am already adding plans to my weekend which I never want to get spoiled so I prepare for it from Friday morning lol😁 Therefore I am allowing my self to rest fully on Saturday as I get the feeling of "weekend almost over" after waking up on Sunday as I consciously think and worry about the upcoming crazy hectic weekπŸ˜’

  • Azzeddine REGHAIS
    Azzeddine REGHAIS Member Posts: 18 ✭✭

    @Andrea Hayward I agree with her according to what I understood from what she said , We all need to break the habit that will become a routine with time, because the routine in turn breeds boredom. Going to a swim or to a barbecue session with friends in a beautiful nature changes the lifestyle again.

    The body may need rest or sleep after being tired, but the soul, which is mostly the fuel for every action, a torch and a light for goals, needs such things, provided that we do not stay long with this behavior so that we do not fall into another problem, which is a waste of time.

    We just give each thing the amount it deserves


    Greetings to all and a week full of activity and successπŸ™‚

  • Vivien Kretz
    Vivien Kretz Member Posts: 283 ✭✭✭

    It is amazing that you structure your week like that and also journal. I think what is great about this is that it gives guidance and one can decide however one wants to use it with these little activities. Very cool! I am happy that you keep your Fridays for yourself and deep work free. How you schedule your weekend is amazing, very inspiring. thank you for sharing your technique @Isurika Sevwandi☺️.

  • Vivien Kretz
    Vivien Kretz Member Posts: 283 ✭✭✭

    I totally agree with you @Azzeddine REGHAIS. Not only the body but also the soul needs rest and to recharge. It is important that we also do something for ourselves spiritually and not just physically. It’s the balance that helps us practice self-care. 🌸

  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 465 ✭✭✭✭✭

    How did I missed this thread?! Thanks for the tag @Andrea Hayward and @Vivien Kretz for starting the thread! I never considered the planning/routines I had as an act of self care but I'm thinking that perhaps I need to be kinder to myself and realise that is what I'm doing?!

    I like to plan at the end of X unit of time rather than at the beginning, that way I feel I can relax into any downtime without wondering what I'm going to be doing. e.g. I plan the following week's work/timechunks on my Friday afternoon before I stop work.

    I feel a bit extravagant that I do a personal training session once a week, this is both great for my physical and mental health. I have a long term condition that affects my joints and these sessions have really helped me get my independence back through strength training and the like. I love that it is (usually) on a Wednesday morning. Partly because it's humpday and I get to work slightly compressed hours as I start my work day at 1000/1030 ish and then also because ENDORPHINS! Not until I read this post did I realise why I love my PT slot so much, and that I'm grateful that it worked out to be on a Wednesday. I couldn't be without it now.

  • Jayashree Rajagopalan
    Jayashree Rajagopalan Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 319 admin

    Thanks for the gentle nudge @Andrea Hayward!

    @Vivien Kretz what a lovely find and I am sorry to have missed this. I really liked the concept of structuring self-care with just two main things every day. I think I am going to use this for my own self-care routine - god knows I badly need one right now. I think the best part of something like hides in plain sight---INTENT. It's our intent that drives us to take care of or even destroy ourselves. I'll be honest, self-care hasn't been high on my list for a long time, but beginning this year I decided to cut myself some slack and I've been very consciously incorporating small changes to my habits and even thought process. What you have shared will help me with some consistency to my intent. I have neglected my physical, mental and emotional health for a long long time and it is going to be a tough road in these initial weeks, but I am determined this time (intent!). For me, some of the small things I have started focusing on include watching what I eat (I stress eat and that means an unhealthy lifestyle and poor health), making sure I catch up on sleep if my body needs it over the weekend (I tend to experience major FOMO during weekends and want to do everything at once), getting back to my roots (I've started reading again and soon plan to resume creative writing), and making time for self-reflection and inward thinking every day. I am going to just begin with the right intent to do just these for now and then go back and create a whole new self-care routine for myself.

  • Gayatri Ramachandran
    Gayatri Ramachandran Member Posts: 237 ✭✭✭

    Thank you @Andrea Hayward for bringing me into this thread. Self care I understand is "me-time", so I do anything I feel like as per my mood at that time. Quite often I do like you said (watching movies/videos that I might have seen a umpteen times already😁) and feel the same way- "I guess it feels like spending time with something or someone I know. So it's very comforting". Also, like Kakoli mentioned, its very erratic and unscheduled owing to laboratory work itself being quite erratic. So I don't think I can even dream of following a schedule @Vivien Kretz since sometimes Mondays feel like Fridays and weekends feels like weekdaysπŸ˜‚., all thanks to the spurts of motivation I get and start experiments quite unplanned (of course I subdue my motivation if I have something important commitments for the weekend or a family event to attend to that I cannot miss). On many weekends, my sunday starts only after 11am coz I have to go early morning to the lab to check on something or the other. I feel here, @Praveena Ramanujam would find this quite relatable to (your benchwork days).

    The half an hour walk thats part of my daily routine is my ONLY scheduled "me-time". This apart, I keep journaling during tea breaks between experiments (for this I make tea/coffee in the lab itself, so many of my colleagues get upset when I deny going to the canteen with them for breaks coz more than being social, penning my thoughts, and introspection, gives me happiness). Calls to or from my mentees on any weekday or weekend is such a delight and I generally club the walk with the call (to save on time). Believe it or not this makes me feel a lot more rejuvenated 😍.

    Laughter is a real stress buster, so while I prepare the kitchen for the next day, I listen to stand up comedies for which there is no dearth of talent on the OTT/social media and this I tell you works like magic in relaxing me to a great extent 😁

  • Vivien Kretz
    Vivien Kretz Member Posts: 283 ✭✭✭

    I love that you can find a way to schedule these into your every day life and I agree, I also find two things to do a day not terribly overwhelming. It is also nice to mix and match the small challenges and find inspirations for new, simple reminders for self-care. I think it shows once more how much further self-care can go than coffee and pillows.

    Intent is an amazing starting point and if that intent is geared towards self-care, I am very positive that self-care will move up a little bit on your priorities list. 😊I love how you plan to do both things that extend your skillset and things that focus on your health.

    One small reminder for FOMO: we cannot do everything at once because it is simply physically impossible. And let's be honest, we do not want to do everything that is there, it just sometimes appears like it. The small amount of things we select from the abundance of activities and possibilities are our personal selection and that makes our composition of activities so valuable.

    Ugh, this reminds me that I dislike it so much when people say "I do not need so much sleep". It is not a flex. Everyone needs their hours and it is amazing to have the INTENT to watch out for one's sleep intake.

    I am truly excited to hear more about how your self-care journey unfolds! Keep me updated! πŸ₯°

  • Vivien Kretz
    Vivien Kretz Member Posts: 283 ✭✭✭

    Thank you for your comment @Gayatri Ramachandran. πŸ₯° I totally agree, self-care should be connected to the mood of that day and that is a very health way to go about it. I agreee, the unpredictability of your schedule brings obstacles to tackle but it also creates beauty and adventure in your everyday life. Sudden passionate episodes can create a lot of adrenaline and if that is transformed to stress, it creates innovation, which is amazing.

    Those tea breaks sound so cozy! The way you write about your work schedule sounds so joyous. It just makes me want to hop on the train! You already incorporate so much health care in your daily routine, absolutely amazing.

  • Andrea Hayward
    Andrea Hayward Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 943 admin
    edited February 2

    @Vivien Kretz Trust me when I say that the positive impact is anything but tiny πŸ€—

    I just got back to 15 minutes of jump rope on Monday, followed by 45 minutes of power walking. Even though it was after a long work day, I ended up feeling more energetic. Please tell me if you get one too πŸ˜„

    OMG! I watch random episodes of New Girl all the time! It always helps me relax and definitely makes me laugh, regardless of my mood before watching it. Thank you for telling me that I've been sharing this show with you. Comfort shows are the best! 😍

    I haven't gotten around to journaling yet. But I did write down my goals for the year (both personal and professional) for the first time in my life. It felt great! Slowly but surely, I'm sure I'll make my way to journaling too!

  • Andrea Hayward
    Andrea Hayward Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 943 admin

    @Isurika Sevwandi I can vouch for making a to-do list on Friday evening for the following Monday. It has helped me immensely! A little something I picked up from @Shruti Turner πŸ™‚

    I like how you manage your weekends. It truly sounds like "FriYay Mood" πŸ˜„

  • Andrea Hayward
    Andrea Hayward Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 943 admin

    @Azzeddine REGHAIS I love that you've added an element of spiritual self-care and soul food to this conversation 🀩 I agree with you - no amount of sleep or physical rest will help if you're in need of other forms of self-care. Understanding what kind of self-care you need is very important!

  • Andrea Hayward
    Andrea Hayward Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 943 admin
    edited February 2

    @Shruti Turner Even I hadn't considered planning as a form of self-care. But I guess when you really think about it, it is! It helps keep us relatively calm through the day and limits the scope for forgetting things and then stressing over them after or worse - having to do them on a tight deadline.

    I'm so glad to learn about the personal training sessions! You've been talking about getting back to physical activity that works well for you, for a while now. Happy that you've found something that is YOU and that it's helping you get and feel stronger πŸ€—

  • Vivien Kretz
    Vivien Kretz Member Posts: 283 ✭✭✭

    Wow, such an amazing workout! I am very proud of you. I am dead scared of the gym, so my friend and I teamed up together and are gonna go to the gym today. I would love to feel more energetic, just like you! ☺️

    I am so happy to find out that you love New Girl too! So cool! Winston is definitely my favourite character, he always makes me laugh.

    I am so happy that you are so self-reflective about your goals and write them down. It is helpful to get things onto paper, no matter how clear they might be in the head.

  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 465 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I don't think I consiously did think about it as self-care until I was writing it down in this thread. Another reason I love this platform.

    Thank you - that means a lot. I've now been doing sessions for nearly 1.5 years and I can see the difference. For so long I was working on "physio" or remedial training to fight back against what my condition meant I lost. Whereas now, I can feel and see my progression beyond that and it feels great!! I'm so grateful that my body can feel what I call "good pain" (that nice warm ache from a tough work out) rather than just "bad pain" (from my condition or injury). I feel like the acknowledgement of our own progress is another act of self-care. The mindset perspective on what is self-care, even if we don't change the routine, I feel, is so powerful.

  • Gayatri Ramachandran
    Gayatri Ramachandran Member Posts: 237 ✭✭✭

    Its simply motivating to see how very positively you handle your bodily hurdles and keep pressing further with such enthu! @Shruti Turner. Turning focus on "acknowledgement of our own progress is another act of self-care"- isn't that a truly beautiful and intense statement! Wow😍 I mean, those who acknowledge these little things in life truly resonate positive vibes. Blessed!