A radio DJ remined me that sometimes DIY self-care is all you need.
What’s your favourite radio station? I love to listen to Virgin Radio in the morning because Chris Evans and his team always give my day a positive kick start. I was a fan when he presented the TV programs The Big Breakfast and Don’t Forget Your Toothbrush back in the 90’s, and I’ve been listening to his radio show since he was on Radio 2 many years ago. Whether you love him or hate him, he very often comes out with ideas that make real sense to me.
I have noticed as time has gone by that his outlook on life has changed quite considerably. He seems to have become a bit more philosophical, and his focus is centred around self-care, self-love and wellness. Obviously this is what my blog is all about so there’s no surprises that what he says appeals to me.
This morning was no exception and I found myself agreeing with him out loud in my car. He was talking about DIY self-care and was explaining that the majority of the things we can do to help ourselves stay healthy and happy are actually free or don’t cost a lot at all.
Chris had an interesting idea that many elements of DIY self-care should be prescribed by doctors and in fact I believe some of them are already. For example, more sleep, more exercise or more relaxation. This seems quite obvious when you think about it, but how many of you, when you are feeling unwell go straight to the doctor and expect to get medicine for the problem. In actual fact very often, the answer is right under your nose and is free and effective.
Want to know more? Then read on.
Here is a list of FREE DIY self-care activities you can do starting today !
FREE DIY SELF-CARE IDEAS
1. Get enough sleep
This one is easy because all you have to do is make sure you go to bed early enough. Set yourself a bedtime alarm as a reminder. If you know you have to get up at a certain time in the morning set your bedtime alarm for at least 8 hours before. If, like me, you struggle to get to sleep at night then you might want to have a look at the post I’ve recently written called How To Get A Better Sleep – 11 Simple Tips which should give you some really useful ideas.
2. Exercising regularly
It doesn’t cost a penny to step outside your front door and go for a walk. You just need a pair of comfy shoes and a warm coat. Some people prefer to go to the gym, but this really isn’t necessary, and you can get all the exercise you need through your daily activities for free.
If you like running, you don’t need a treadmill and the latest in designer running leggings. Believe me it won’t make you run any faster or double the number of calories you burn off. As long as you have a supportive pair of trainers you can run on roads, paths, fields all for free. A simple pair of shorts or tracksuit bottoms with a T-shirt is absolutely fine. Let’s face it you’re only going to make it hot and sweaty, so do you really need to be wearing designer gear?
If you don’t want to do cardiovascular exercise but you like to do muscle toning or weight training then a good day in the garden doing some digging and lifting is perfect. It’s a fantastic way to save money on a gardener, to tone your muscles and burn off some calories.
Cleaning the house is also another perfect way to do exercise for free. Pushing that Hoover around will tone your arm muscles in no time.
3. Staying rehydrated
I can’t emphasise enough the importance of staying hydrated. I have talked about this before and I apologise for going over this again, however your body cannot function without it. Very quickly your health will deteriorate. So many symptoms are caused by not drinking enough water and this is a very quick way of fixing those problems.
Drinking water is practically free and so easy to do. If you are rubbish at making sure you’re drinking enough liquid during the day, like I am, then find a large glass (pint) or water bottle and make sure you fill it up at least 4 times a day. If you don’t like cold water in the winter, which I don’t try hot water. It sounds bizarre but it’s actually quite nice. That way you can make sure you are staying rehydrated.
4. Spending time with friends and family
Being around those you love is so important. It’s good for your soul and makes you feel happy and relaxed. Humans need interaction for so many reasons and the best part is it doesn’t cost anything. By spending time with others, you will learn new things, feel inspired, boost your confidence, and even have a good laugh.
”Laughter enhances your intake of oxygen-rich air, stimulates your heart, lungs and muscles, and increases the endorphins” – Mayo Clinic
5. Eating well
This one isn’t necessarily entirely free but there are ways to make sure you are getting the nutrients you need without it costing the earth. Fruit and vegetables are amongst the cheapest items you can buy in the supermarket and are one of the most nutritious. Why not challenge yourself to make a nutritious meal for as little as possible using fresh ingredients. If you are not a natural cook there are plenty of websites that can help. My recent article Vegetarian Protein Foods – Best Sources & How To Use Them can assist you with this.
6. Practicing mindfulness
Take time to be aware of the world around you, your thoughts, feelings and actions. This is definitely free but can offer you huge health benefits. Anxiety and stress are very common health complaints these days and practicing mindfulness is a super way to relieve your symptoms.
Allow yourself 10 minutes a day, or maybe more if you can, to step away from the hustle and bustle. Take a moment, breath slowly and deeply and you will feel your shoulders dropping and your body relaxing.
DIY Self-Care – Final thoughts
This may all have seemed a bit obvious to you and I apologise if I’ve repeated myself from previous articles but from listening to Chris Evans this morning I definitely felt like there was a light bulb moment. He is so right in saying that many of our health issues we can sort ourselves for free with a bit of thought and effort. Do we all really need to rush straight to the doctor every time we have a headache or can’t sleep? Obviously I’m not telling you to not go, but I’m asking you to take a moment and think about whether you can help yourself instead.
P.S. Chris Evans, if you ever read this (which I doubt, but I can dream) I hope I have interpreted your words from the show correctly and I thank you for your daily dose of inspiration and motivation.