Self-care tips and strategies to manage stress (scientifically proven techniques)


Immediately addressing a common misconception, self-care is not about being selfish or indulgent; it's about maintaining one's health. Currently, self-care is a trending topic. Google Trends indicates that searches related to self-care have doubled in the last six years.

The need for self-care is fast rising, and Associate Professor and chair of the Department of Psychological and Educational Consultation at Fairfield University, Paula Gill Lopez PhD, says it is because “we have an epidemic of anxiety and depression… Everybody feels it.

We can help the people around us overcome the anxiety and depression that continue to hover over us like a dark cloud. Still, we can only take specific actions if we take time to support and care for ourselves, ensuring that we are mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically well.

Let’s examine self-care, why it is crucial, and some self-care strategies for managing stress.


What is self-care?

The word is quite self-explanatory; self-care means taking care of yourself. Self-care includes intentionally keeping you healthy spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically. You may think, “Of course, I take care of myself; I remember to eat and have a healthy dose of fruits and proteins and keep up with my water levels.” But what other aspects of your well-being are you sacrificing for the sake of others?

Often, our well-being comes last on a long list of responsibilities, commitments, and promises we have made to other people, to our jobs, etc. This is why self-care should be at the top of our minds and not an afterthought.


The importance of self-care

Here are a few reasons why self-care is important:

  • Self-care helps you to be intentional about your well-being.
  • You become more mindful of your needs and desires.
  • Being healthy better equips you to support the people you love and care for.
  • When you take care of yourself and aren’t stressed, you can better meet the needs of others around you.
  • By maintaining proper mental health, you can better handle stressors that come from work or the people around you.
  • Self-care has been clinically proven to reduce depression, and anxiety, minimize frustration and improve focus, energy, and happiness.
  • Spiritually, self-care allows us to stay connected to our higher power and realize his plans and purpose for us.


Self-care strategies for managing stress

As mentioned earlier, self-care has many health advantages and can help you significantly reduce stress. Here are some affordable ways to practice self-care that you may find useful: 


  • Remain socially connected

One of the simple ways to practice self-care is to stay connected with the people who love and support you. It can be easy to lose sight of these essential connections when you are neck-deep in catering to the needs of others. Remember to take time to share with the people who support and love you.


  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle

Don’t ignore your physical health. A healthy lifestyle will help you live longer and more effectively in other daily tasks. Exercise regularly, eat healthy foods, get enough sleep, avoid drugs and excessive alcohol, and practice relaxation exercises. Don’t minimize the significant changes these activities can bring to your mental and physical well-being.


  • Make time for yourself

When you have to take care of responsibilities at work, look after your kids, give your partner due attention, run a business on the side, and study, there isn’t much time left for you. Being overwhelmed doesn’t make you a lousy caregiver or a terrible person. Make time for yourself. It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate. Simply taking time to prioritise your needs can relieve the feeling of burnout.


  • Know when you need to ask for help

You don’t have to go through life alone. It is ok to ask for help when you feel overwhelmed or under pressure. Don’t wait till you are at a mental tipping point to cry out in distress. You are human, and as such, situations arise that are beyond your control. Self-care eliminates the toxic trait that says you must weather every storm alone. It's ok to reach out to the people you love for assistance. Sometimes, a conversation is all you need.



Remember that self-care doesn’t always have to be grand. It is okay if you can’t afford to charter a private plane and jet off to a remote off-grid location. Just remember to enjoy a delicious healthy meal, take a deep breath when you need it and enjoy some quiet time in prayer. Frequently, the small things have a significant impact.



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