Self-care for busy and ambitious women can be challenging to incorporate into a daily routine. In fact, figuring out how to do so takes time, practice, and strategy. Even when we understand the importance of self-care it’s not always enough. For many women, a new way of thinking and proceeding with a self-care roadmap is necessary.
That roadmap to self-care does not have to be complicated.
In fact, my mission is to make self-care straightforward, practical, and effective, even when you don’t have lots of free time. I created a blueprint for self-care that I call “The Fabulous Four.” This method for building a self-care routine can withstand the test of a demanding lifestyle. In fact, the plan is to build self-care routines into the fabric of your busy lifestyle in a way that makes it “a part of”, and not “in addition to.”
To start, I encourage you to explore the self-care routines that are already working for you. Make a list of strategies that lead to you feeling rested, restored, renewed, or recharged. You know the saying, “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.” Next, assess how often you are actively practicing self-care. If it’s anything other than daily, this post is going to challenge you to increase the frequency. Ideally, to every day.
Now that you have a view of where you are at, let’s get to the good stuff.
The Fabulous Four method will give you a visual of self-care that makes sense and partners well with time constraints created by long work hours, parenting demands, and disruptions to your healthy work-life flow. Here’s how it works:
Each day, you will assign self-care activities that intentionally nurture your Fabulous Four~MIND, BODY, SPIRIT, and RELATIONSHIPS. Each area is given priority status. This means that no area is neglected and all areas are protected. To start, it may be helpful to determine what qualifies as self-care for each area. List a variety of activities that can be done in a variety of environments and situations. Below is a list of ideas to get you started.
- Mind/mental self-care: turn off your work email alerts outside of work hours, digital detox, write a journal entry, listen to relaxing music, read a chapter of a good book, declutter your office, use your essential oil diffuser, talk about your stressors, ask for help, say no, meditate for 5-minutes, draw, paint, or practice mindfulness.
- Body/physical self-care: walk outside for 15-30 minutes, eat a nutritious meal, get 7-8 hours of restful sleep, take a nap, soak in the bath, hydrate throughout the day, moisturize your hair and skin, gently stretch your body, sleep in, dance, 5-minute deep breathing exercise, drink your favorite cup of tea, and go to the doctor when needed.
- Spiritual self-care: pray, meditate, connect with nature, watch the sunrise or sunset, read the bible or other inspirational material, sit and look at the moon and stars, watch an inspirational movie, listen to your favorite spiritual music, listen to a church service online, or write out your prayer,
- Relational self-care: join a virtual book club, watch your favorite television show with your spouse, go out for coffee with a friend, meet new people, set clear professional and personal boundaries, send a gift card to a friend, compliment a stranger, hug a loved one for 5-minutes, eat dinner as a family, or play a board game with your child,
Ideally, you would spend 30-minutes nurturing each of these areas daily. That’s a total of 2-hours that some ambitious women leaders don’t have. So here’s the hack. Decrease the time commitment by using the Fabulous Four partnering strategy. Pick two areas of self-care to focus on at the same time for 30-minutes. This decreases the time commitment to 1-hour. Just because you lessen the time, does not mean you will lower the intention behind the process.
I’ll give you two examples of how self-care partnering works.
Partnering SPIRIT AND RELATIONSHIPS: Read the bible with your family. Go to church together. Discuss with your family and friends what you’re grateful for.
Partnering BODY AND MIND: Take a walk while listening to your favorite podcast. Read a book to relax you before bed. Practice deep breathing while you stretch.
The key to the Fabulous Four method is maximizing your time while you boost your mind, body, spirit, and relationships. It’s making sure that you nurture and enhance each area consistently and effectively. By doing so, you’re elevating your self-care and improving your ability to lead more successfully in life, career, and relationships.
I hope this information was helpful. If you’d like additional self-care ideas don’t forget to subscribe here at livelikeher.com and receive a free 35-day self-care calendar.
Until next week, keep being FABULOUS as you move FOUR-WARD