By:  Elizabeth Wellington

To be your most authentic self, you need to incorporate self-care into your daily life. Self-care anchors you in kindness and love, even amidst a whirlwind of stress or trauma. Dr. Kristen Lee Costa, a professor at Northeastern University and stress expert defines self-care as “being aware of a wide range of needs and deliberately taking action to support our own well-being.”

Many of us want to practice kindness toward ourselves, but we don’t know how to start. Here are ten simple ways to nurture your wellbeing with self-care:

  1. Nourish Yourself: Beautiful foods that nourish both your body and your soul set the foundation for your day. Celebrate your time in the kitchen by preparing dishes that help you feel grounded and alive.
  2. Go to a Yoga Class: Committing yourself to a yoga class realigns your intention, connecting you with your breath and your body. Even if you don’t practice regularly, you can still benefit from a class.
  3. Take a Bath: Water soothes the soul. Take some time to relish a bath, complete with bath salts and a plush bath pillow to support your neck.
  4. Celebrate Small Changes: You love big milestones — graduations, promotions, and birthdays. But what about the small moments? Celebrate that time you handed in an assignment early or you reached out to a friend at exactly the right time.
  5. Get 10 Hours of Sleep: Imagine if you slept for ten hours every night this week. You would probably feel rested, awake, and alive. Give yourself that gift, and notice how it changes your life.
  6. Walk Outside: Fresh air and sunshine does a world of good. When you’re feeling down, plop yourself on a bench and take in a natural, serene setting.
  7. Take a Personal Day: Your company gives you personal days for a reason. Next time you need a break, ask for one. Proactively honoring your needs keeps you from getting sick or burned out from exhaustion.
  8. Write a Gratitude List: Gratitude lists bring your attention to the beauty in your life. For an extra-nurturing list, write down the traits you’re grateful for within yourself.
  9. Let Go of Unwanted Things: Shedding clutter — clothes, kitchenware, books, and furniture — frees you to focus on what brings you joy.
  10. Meditate: Meditation returns you to the present moment, giving you the opportunity to find stillness and appreciation in any circumstance. A regular practice can decrease stress and fortify you with a practical tool for everyday life.