The 7 Types Of Self-Care And How To Practice Them

We all know we need to make self-care a priority. We hear it everywhere, from our mothers to our favorite magazine talking about the next self-care trend that’s coming up. Everyone is aware of its importance but few of us actually take time to practice it. And I bet even fewer of us practice the 7 types of self-care. 

If you have a clue about what we’re talking about, keep reading. We’ll explain the 7 types of self-care in a bit.

When we hear about self-care, it’s usually about the new face mask you just NEED to try, the new life-changing workout, or a great meditation app. Maybe, you don’t like any of these things. Or you don’t feel like they speak to what YOU think you’re lacking in terms of self-care. 

Don’t get me wrong, these are all great things, but they mostly focus on one or two types of self-care. 

Self-care content tends to be very catered to activities that cater towards physical and mental self-care. But there are many types of self-care apart from those two that are just as important. There are actually 7 types of self-care. Some could even argue there are more, but these 7 are the ones we’re focusing on. And, the ones that we think are the MOST essential.

It makes sense that we’d need 7 types of self-care

There are so many sides to who we are as humans and the way we interact with the world. We’re body, but we’re also mind & spirit. There’s also a social & community side to us that needs to be fulfilled for us to feel content. We’re also dually intellectual & emotional all at once. 

Self-care is much more than putting a face mask on and reading a book. It’s about prioritizing taking care of yourself in whichever ways YOU need most. 

Lucky for you, we’re gonna explain each of the 7 types of self-care, and give you some ways you can practice each of them.

Physical

Physical self-care is anything you do to take care of your body and ALL its functions.

It goes from digestion to skincare to your relationship with how your body looks and feels.

WAYS TO PRACTICE

  • Do a quick workout. 
  • Go for a walk.
  • Get a massage. If you can’t pay for one or get someone you know to give it to you, do it yourself. You can do it to the parts of your body you can reach like your legs.
  • Try Stretching.
  • Have at least one nutritious meal or snack a day.
  • Keep yourself hydrated. 
  • Have a pamper day. 

Check out our Top 6 Worst Ingredients For Your DIY Face Mask to make sure you keep your skin protected during your pamper day.

Mental

Mental self-care relates to anything that is occupying your mental space. Your mindset, how you decompress, how you deal with anxiety or stress. 

To sum it all up, anything to do with your mental health.

If you want to start incorporating more mental self-care, we have the PERFECT thing for you! We created a 5-day Mental Wellness Challenge just for you! All you have to do is sign up and you’ll get it in your email for free. It’s the perfect way to start incorporating more mental self-care into your life. 

WAYS TO PRACTICE

  • If you can, speak with a therapist.
  • Listen to music that calms you or makes you feel good.
  • Have some alone time 
  • Nurture your hobbies: take a day a week, or a few hours a week if you can’t take a full day, to do things you enjoy.
  • Try freestyle writing. This is when you write down whatever comes to mind without thinking about correct grammar, punctuation, or structure. You can write anything you want, it doesn’t even have to all be about one topic. Just let it flow. You can write about any stressful thoughts or situations you’re going through, to get it all out. 
  • Practice deep breathing 
  • Rest when you need it. DON’T overwork yourself, you’ll burn out and I promise it’s worse.
  • Establish a regular sleep schedule: being tired makes you sluggish and puts you on a bad moon. It can take a huge toll on your mental health. 
  • Do something creative. ANYTHING you like.

Emotional

Emotional self-care is anything that helps you process your emotions. The way you emotionally react, deal with, and process the world, your relationships, and any situation you encounter. 

Emotional wellness is about learning to manage our emotions in the best way possible.

WAYS TO PRACTICE

  • Have a check-in with yourself: At the end of the day or week, take some time to think of how you felt. Think of what your most recurring emotions were, the emotional responses that stand out.  Recognize those emotions and analyze them and where they may come from. 
  • Talk to a loved one about how you’re feeling.
  • Try journaling to process your emotions

10 Life-Changing Self-Love Journal Prompts

  • Let yourself cry. If something is making you cry, there’s a reason for that. Don’t repress it, let yourself feel and get it all out, crying can be a release. 
  • Connect to your intuition.
  • Practice positive self-talk.
Mental health

Intellectual

Intellectual self-care is all about your mind. Unlike mental self-care, it’s about how you think, learn and grow as a person rather than about your mental state. 

Taking care of yourself intellectually includes anything that makes you develop as a person, expand your horizons and open your mind.

WAYS TO PRACTICE

  • Read a book 

5 Books To Kick-Start Your Spiritual Journey

The Ultimate Cozy Fall Reading List

If You Love This Taylor Swift Song, Read This Book

  • Watch a documentary or movie. 

10 Must-Watch Movies For History Lovers

The 16 Best Coming-Of-Age Movies & Tv Shows

Top 10 Movies for the Perfect Sleepover

  • Research a topic you’re interested in 
  • Watch Ted-Talks
  • Take a free online course. Many sites like Coursera have great free courses you could take. 
  • Listen to a podcast of a topic you want to learn more about 

If you want more suggestions, check out our spiritual podcast recommendations article. Podcasts For Your Self-Development Journey

  • Go to a museum 

If you’re in Mexico City, check out our Guide To Mexico City Museums.

Spiritual

Spiritual self-care concerns your connection to your soul and to any higher power you believe in. It’s anything that makes you feel aligned with something bigger than your physical self.

5 Books To Kick-Start Your Spiritual Journey

Journal Prompts for Spiritual Development

WAYS TO PRACTICE

  • Meditate as much as you can
  • Connect with nature
  • You can do this by going on a walk through nature, it could even be a park if you live in a city with little access to nature.
  • If you don’t have access to a park, you can sit with your eyes closed and focus on whatever natural sounds are around you.
  • Worst case scenario, if there are no natural sounds around you. Close your eyes while listening to audios of nature sounds and imagine yourself being there. 
  • Take time to reflect on the state of your inner self.
  • Practice saying affirmations, mantras, chanting, or praying. Whatever you connect with.
  • Do random acts of kindness.
  • Practice gratitude.

Social

Social self-care regards the nurturing of your relationships. It includes any relationship you may have. From the relationship with your family, friends, a significant other, and even your coworkers. 

This type of self-care is about maintaining as healthy relationships as possible, 

It’s also about developing a sense of community, of being a part of a group, which is so important to feeling fulfilled as a person. After all, we’re social creatures as some say.

WAYS TO PRACTICE

  • Establish your boundaries and keep them. 
  • Schedule a facetime or zoom meeting with your friends.
  • Give your parents a call at least once a week.
  • Plan a hang out with your friends.
  • Reach out and connect to a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while.
  • Schedule a monthly brunch date with your best friend.
  • Be honest with your loved ones: touch base with the people close to you every now and then. Think of what you like & don’t like about your relationships. How could they improve?. Tell your friends what you think about your connection. Do it with kindness, of course. 

Environmental

Last but not least, environmental self-care. This one regards the spaces that surround you, the places you visit regularly. This goes from your home to your workspace to your favorite coffee shop. 

Our surroundings have an impact on us, so it’s important to make sure the impact is positive.

WAYS TO PRACTICE

  • Clean out your closet. Give away anything you don’t wear or want anymore.
  • Organize your bathroom, make-up, and self-care drawers. 
  • Make your bed every day when you wake up 
  • Declutter your room or house. Keep the things you truly love and use. As Marie Kondo says, keep the things that bring you joy.
  • Clean your kitchen as soon as you’re done eating.
  • Do what you can to protect the environment. You can start with recycling, using less plastic, or having more plant-based meals.
  • Schedule a cleaning and organizing day every week. 

CONCLUSION

For us to feel truly fulfilled and healthy, we need to address every side of us, not just one.

A lot is said about our physical health, but little about any other side of who we are. We need to strive to be healthy in every area of life to be as happy as possible. If we don’t address all sides of ourselves, something will always be missing, something that keeps us from being at peace. 

Don’t let any side of yourself go, all sides are as important as the other, and they all have an impact on one other. It’s hard to connect to nurture your social side if you’re feeling physically horrible.

Lastly, keep in mind that you don’t have to necessarily nurture the 7 types of self-care at once. Finding the balance between all of them would be the best, but it’s okay to focus on a specific one when you feel like you need to. There will be times that you feel disconnected from your intellectual side but you’re doing great emotionally. In that case, you can make emotional self-care a little less of a priority and put intellectual self-care at the forefront. 

That could happen with any of the 7 types of self-care. Try to be mindful of which areas of your life need the most attention. 

BEFORE YOU GO

Let us know, what are your favorite self-care practices? We’d love to hear from you. Also, check out the rest of our Wellness articles. 

Love, Sam & Dani.

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