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Have a Nap, It’s Called Self-Care- [The Wasted Time Project]

Us humans are pretty pants at taking care of anything- the ozone layer, animals, the oceans, I could go on. When it comes to taking time to look after ourselves…we’re pretty pants at that too- or at least I am. It doesn’t help that society these days expects a lot more out off people without giving a lot back, therefore we seem to have less time in general- but that time we DO have, could it be used better?


It’s easy to blame (and we have) the rise of social media for mental health issues and people not focusing on themselves. A new statistic suggests the average person spends 21 DAYS(!!) per year on social media. Surprising? Not really given how easy it is to plonk your butt on the couch and scroll through. However WE are the ones who are choosing to prioritise it. You remember how Mums used to say, ‘you’ll get square eyes from watching all of that telly’? I think mine have turned into blue squares with a little white ‘f’ in the middle.

When I first realised I was suffering with depression, the first self-care thing I did was to try to do things that were away from social media. Facebook and co. can be fun and great to connect with people, but if you’re struggling with depression, scrolling through a stream of perfectly posed depictions of contentment is basically rubbing salt in the wound. FYI people aren’t as perfect as the internet wants us to believe. There’s no place for the crappy parts of life on social media- there isn’t an instagram filter for it.

Yet recently, I’ve noticed that spending hours on social media and not on myself is beginning to slither its way back into my life. I excuse it by using social media to promote my blog and connect with readers, but in reality the time it takes to respond to messages and advertise new posts, with a little bit of casual scrolling in between takes less than an hour. Yet I can’t do anything without my phone being nearby.  Chilling in bed- I’ll just have a quick scroll. Watching TV- whilst checking snapchat. Listening to music- whilst liking a picture of avocado on toast (I don’t even like avocado). Then I find myself wondering- why do I feel so overwhelmed all the time. Why? Why?? Because you’re not looking after yourself!


So here are my top ten self-care activities that I used to do all the time and will now be implementing in my life again, rather than being a slave to the scroll.


There are days when everything has just got too much and by the time I get home, I literally cannot think properly. So taking half an hour to an hour to just switch off from the world does wonders. I wake up thinking clearer and emotionally I’m a lot more relaxed rather than feeling like a coke bottle that’s been shaken.


2. Watch a David Attenborough Documentary

Ok. This may be a bit specific, but hear me out. If you suffer from anxiety and depression, I really recommend the Blue Planet series. For me, it gives me a focus that’s away from the stress in my head. I’m listening to the information (I challenge you to find a more relaxing sound than Attenborough’s voice) and watching what he’s saying happen on screen which eases my anxiety. Plus watching something that is full of so much beauty can really help if you’re struggling with negative thoughts. It’s hard to feel negative when watching Dolphins get high on puffer fish and penguins slipping about on ice.


3. Music

I did a separate post a while back about using music to help alleviate stress and anxiety- click here to read. You’ll be surprised at how taking a couple of hours just chilling out listening to music can really ease the strain on your brain.


4. Reading

Would I rather be sitting on a couch in Wigan, worrying about everything I need to do tomorrow, or would I rather be strolling around Hogwarts? No competition really. Even sitting without your phone and reading a magazine can just give you the time to breathe and focus on something nice.


5. Call a friend

There is nothing like talking to that one person who knows you better than everyone else. There are no expectations, you can literally talk about whatever comes into your head- it’s the best therapy.


6. Treat yo’self

Yes taking care of ourselves physically is important…blah, blah, blah, but if you need to sit with a tub of ice cream and a Disney film to make yourself feel better, then you do it- sod you green smoothies, this is self-care!


7. Go and see your family

There are very little problems in this world that can’t be fixed by a cup of tea and a hug from my grandparents.


8. Look after yourself

Have a long hot bath or shower, do your nails, book a massage, complete an phenomenally long skincare routine- facemask not facebook.


9. Have a cuppa

Sit down and just have a minute with yourself and a good cup of tea. No texts, no scrolling, no nothing. Allow yourself to acknowledge the things that are bothering you, then let them go.


10. HAVE A NAP!!

Have I said that already? Ah well, what can I say- I’m a firm believer in the nap. If your computer isn’t working you turn it off for a bit don’t you? See computer science supports naps!


What self-care tips do you recommend?

Let me know in the comments!

The Wasted Time Project- Previous Post


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