Busy blogger? Juggling different roles as a work-from-home entrepreneur? Perhaps you’re a stay-at-home parent and find the day to day routine too taxing to get through? For each of you, I want to say, ‘I see you and hear you.’ And that’s why I’ve put together these 15 self care ideas that anyone can do to reduce overwhelm.

As life becomes quicker and easier to access at the touch of a button, there is a particular fallout that we don’t realise: we get too much of access, all the time and every time. Where earlier it was difficult to access information, today the exact opposite is the case. 

Result? An overdose of information and a significant sense of overwhelm.

I’ve been working from home for the last 8 years now, consistently and happily. But there are days when I feel the need to step back, assess where I stand and do something to rejuvenate myself. Being a solo entrepreneur is especially taxing since you have to be your own motivator. 

Candle inside an orange bottle placed in a wicker basket next to white gift boxes. Text overlay that shares self care ideas for busy bloggers, parents and entrepreneurs.

Over time, I’ve found that each of these tips have helped me handle overwhelm and get back on the horse when things aren’t a smooth ride. Here’s my hope that they will help you too.

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1. Set a Mindful Intention

Before you set out to do a task, whatever it may be, set a mindful intention. For instance, if you’re going to write a post on the blog, ask yourself why you are doing it. What is the impulse that drives it? 

Setting an intention does two things: Helps you focus on your why and how you will go about doing it.

Since this is a conscious activity, your mind automatically tends to relax when you handle the task at hand.

Read why Mindfulness is the Mental workout you need

2. Plan your day/week/month

One sure-fire way to tackle overwhelm and also care for yourself is having a simple plan in place. 🙂

The plain fact is that we have too many things competing for our attention at once. But what if we could reduce that with an easy trick?

On any given day, sit down with a notepad or your to-do list on your app and write down the things you need to do for the day ahead. Keep it as simple as possible.

For instance, categorise 3 broad headings: Work, Family and Personal. Next, list out 3 most important tasks under each heading. Finally, work out how much time you will need for each of those tasks. 

I guarantee that if you do this not only do you get your tasks done, but you will have time left over for any extra tasks you have on the agenda.

Learn how to use Time Blocking to open up your day!

3. Incorporate Breaks into your day

Tea is my saviour on days when I feel like things are hurtling at breakneck speed.

Every time I feel like my mind is about to crack from the strain, I take a break and make myself a cup of soothing tea. Green, black, Earl Grey- it doesn’t matter. 

For me, the act of watching the tea being brewed and then sipping on it, savouring the taste as it tantalises my taste buds is all the self-care I need to get me relaxed.

If tea isn’t your preferred beverage, substitute with whatever works for you. Focus on the idea of a break away from what troubles you.

This is why I love making and having tea.

4. Step outside/ Go for a walk

Nothing can beat Nature and the great outdoors when it comes to self care ideas.  Lace up your shoes or slip on a comfortable pair of sandals and go for a walk every day.

Doing this regularly will help you in a number of ways. It disconnects your mind from work/home/family and turns the focus on you. It helps you detach from technology and re-connect with the primal instinct that the earth provides. Walking also greatly helps the creative process and you’ll notice how you come back from a walk, bursting with ideas.

Need help starting a walking routine? This may help.

5. Focus on your breath

I know many people shy away from the idea of meditation but what if you tried a simple exercise instead?

Focus on your breath. 

It’s not that complicated. Just close your eyes, place your hands in any comfortable position and listen to the sound of your breath as you inhale and exhale. 

Do it slowly, deliberately, consciously and before you know it, your regulated breathing has helped dissipate any tension in your body. Doing this a few times a day improves your health- both mental and physical.

6. Read a book

Being a voracious reader since childhood, I’ve been known to finish 3 or 4 books a week. But that number dropped significantly once I started working, being a mom and being online.

But, honestly, those are all excuses. If you’re really keen, you will make time to read. Reading relaxes the mind and helps you switch off from the internet the way very little else can.

Keep it simple. Read a page a day. No more. Before you know it, you will be reading a book a week.

Why we must make time to read.

7. Listen to a Podcast

Podcasts are my favourite way to unwind and take care of myself. 

Since a podcast is completely audio based, it enhances all your senses to focus on the words and the voice rather than too many sensory impulses coming at you from other digital mediums.

Podcasts are what I use to learn something new, de-stress after a long work day or just get some motivation on my chosen path.

Listen to podcasts. They will help you feel better.

Here’s a list of 20 Best Podcasts for bloggers and entrepreneurs.

8. Unwind with music

Music is so liberating and it takes literally no effort on your part. Facing an incredible amount of stress? Crank up the speaker in your home, put on the music and let it wash your worries away.

If you’re the dancing kind, make sure the music is upbeat. Dance away the stress. Hey, it’s a great workout too. 🙂

9. Stretch the body

Did you know that the people of Okinawa, popularly known as one of the Blue Zones, live for the longest periods of time?

And apparently, one of the secrets to their long and healthy lives is the act of stretching.

Most of us today are in sedentary, desk jobs. And almost all of us don’t stretch our limbs through the day. We’re mostly looking down at our phones and laptops.

From today, make yourself a promise. That you will stretch your arms above your head at least five times a day. It’s incredible how the endorphins released from such a simple act reduce stress and enhance a self-care routine.

10. Take  a day off social media

As useful as the social media world can be , it can be equally overwhelming.

Do the necessary thing and unplug from social media at least once a week. This will give you more time to focus on unfinished tasks, reduce anxiety and approach technology with more mindfulness.

Get started with my 24-hour social media detox.

11. Set fixed working hours

If you work from home, chances are you’re always working! That’s because you don’t have clear cut-off times for working.

Why do you need that? So you can focus your energies deeply and creatively on the task at hand and not get sidetracked by a million other things competing for your attention.

Here are 5 Simple Tips for Working from Home

12. Write in a journal

Writing things down is the best way to keep track of your goals. We spoke about this earlier.

Buut did you know that writing has a few added benefits?

For one, it helps calm your mind. For another, it helps structure your thoughts when they are scattered. Third, it lets you clarify what your most important tasks are. Finally, the act of writing connects deeply with that part of your brain linked to creativity.

All of this together helps in self care. Write a few minutes a day. See the difference it makes.

13. Watch some TV

One of the easiest ways to detach from things that stress you out is to catch a flick or your favourite TV show. I set aside 30 minutes to an hour a day just watching some TV to unwind.

I typically fold laundry when I watch TV so that takes care of one task then and there, but you don’t have to, if laundry stresses you out. 🙂

The other option is to make TV watching a great way to connect with your family or kids. I love curling up on the couch and doing just that. It’s my personal Hygge moment each week.

14. Express Gratitude

Do you make it a point to express gratitude? It’s way too easy to get sucked into negativity and complain all the time. To be honest, the more you read that online, the more tempted you are to be negative.

Instead, make the switch. Look for the silver lining in your day. It’s easy when you know how. Start with the simple things: Gratitude for a home, for a job that puts food on the table, for friends who call you to ask how you’re doing.

Then, progress to bigger things such as gratitude for a promotion at work, for landing a new client, for successfully getting your baby weaned and having her sleep through the night.

A little bit of gratitude goes a long way. You will wake up with a smile and end the day with thankfulness.

Here’s how a gratitude habit can help you.

15. Take a spa day

Sometimes despite everything you do at home, you need the help of experts to release your stress.

Save up and book a spa day or a massage at your local centre. Indulge in it guilt-free as you let worries evaporate and anxiety dissolve.

If you can’t afford a spa day, make your own at home with a few scented candles, muted music and some  quiet time. Ask a family member to help take care of the kids while you take care of yourself.

Which of these do you prefer the most?

Would you like a guided 31-day self-care routine? Well, you’re in luck. Starting December 1st, 2018 I am doing just that on my Instagram Account.

31 Days of Self Care

Follow along as I share 31 days of self-care. Let’s unwind from all the stress of 2018 and end December on a peaceful, mindful, stress-free note. Follow me on Instagram here for more details: Shailaja V

Self Care tips that will help you tackle overwhelm, step back and assess what your goals are. Whether you're a blogger, entrepreneur or stay at home parent, these tips are applicable. Read them all and even download a single page handy PDF of these tips for you to use. #Shailajav #SelfCare #Entrepreneurs #Bloggers #WorkingMoms

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