Are you making these top 5 self care mistakes?

Which of these 5 important mistakes are you making? Find out how to identify and then correct them.

You may not realise it but there are a number of significant self care mistakes you could be making. If you are guilty of even one of these, you could be shortchanging yourself and your family. Happily, most of them are not hard to correct. Which mistakes are you guilty of making?

Self Care Mistake Number 1: Skipping breakfast

Beginning the day without breakfast will have a negative effect on your energy levels for the rest of the day. The word itself tells us that it is important: we are breaking our fast. The fasting we do while sleeping needs to be broken with a healthy, nutritious meal in order for us to function at our optimum level.

If I am running late and think that skipping breakfast will be one way to make up some time, I get a quick reminder about why I shouldn’t do it. In my case I get lightheaded and develop a headache. I then find that by mid morning I am consuming any food I can lay my hands on in order to try and feel a little bit better. Of course, this food is never anything healthy or nutritious, most of the time it will be chocolate or something equally bad for my body. Alternatively, when I eat a filling breakfast I have energy, am mentally alert and do not want any of those tempting sugar filled offerings. Do you find that this is the same for you if you skip breakfast?

Perhaps you don’t eat breakfast because you don’t feel hungry in the morning. If this is the case for you, consider how long ago it was that you last ate. Maybe you are eating too late into the evening and so are just not ready to eat again. Have dinner and then stop eating, I guarantee you will be ready to eat breakfast by morning.

Self Care Mistake Number 2: Not making time for exercise in the morning

Exercising in the morning is one of the best ways to create energy. This might seem counterintuitive but it is true. How often have you flopped around the house all day doing nothing much at all and felt exhausted by the end of it? On the other hand, how often have you had a great day out and about and come home with energy to spare?

Morning exercise does not have to take long or be overly strenuous, just enough to get the blood pumping and stimulate a bit of adrenaline. By exercising first thing in the morning you are making time for this important activity rather than relying on finding the time within your busy schedule somewhere later in the day. Let’s face it, the chores are never ever going to be finished so there’s no point waiting for that to happen before putting some changes into place.

Adding a short amount of exercise in the morning will set you up for a productive day.

Self Care Mistake Number 3: Not getting enough sleep

In our fast paced society where there are so many distractions and tasks required of us during the day, it can seem impossible to find enough time for sleep. Often we can convince ourselves that we don’t really need much and that we’ll simply have an extra coffee to help us get through the day. Whilst this may work for a short period of time, in the long run it will only make matters worse. There is a reason that sleep deprivation is used as a form of torture.

Decide upon the time you need to go to sleep and take steps to ensure you keep to it.

Self Care Mistake Number 4: Not scheduling down time

When you are struggling to fit all of the required tasks into your day it can seem impossible to make time for anything else, particularly when this involves doing something just for yourself. Taking time out for yourself though is something that is very important to do. It is necessary to fill your own cup before you can fill some else’s.

When you are running on empty your energy, patience and problem solving abilities suffer. You will find yourself making decisions which, in a different state of mind, you most likely would not have made. A few moments of down time can be all you need to recharge the batteries and enable you to face the next task with renewed energy.

Down time does not have to be a big event either. It might simply involve a short walk after dinner, a trip to the hairdressers without the children or a longer than usual hot shower. What will you make time for today?

Self Care Mistake Number 5: Not asking for help or support

Many women are very guilty of this. We try to keep all of the balls in the air by ourselves when we could actually delegate some of these tasks to others. It’s not too much to ask that the children pick up their own toys, family members help clean up the kitchen or significant others share the shopping duties.

What is often required though is the actual act of asking. We know how busy we are, how many tasks are still to be done and how little time there is left to do them all. Often we think that because this is so obvious to us, it will be obvious to others in the house too. This is not necessarily the case, particularly if you have previously been very good at managing by yourself without assistance. Practise asking for help in small areas and then as this becomes easier, consider other things you can get support to complete.

What is the biggest mistake?

When we look at all of these mistakes: breakfast, exercise, sleep, down time and support, it is clear that the biggest mistake of all is not prioritising our own health, both physical and emotional. Without our health we have nothing. It is therefore vitally important to make time each day to take care of ourselves.

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