Pardon the radio silence for the past couple of weeks, but I have been WIPED OUT. I had a cold that turned into a sinus infection. It would start to get better for a day or two, and then I would stupidly push myself too hard and end up even worse. In the midst of all of this, I had a couple of weeks that I’m certain were the universe punishing me for some sort of terrible offense that I inflicted upon mankind. Among other punishments, I cut myself on two different occasions with a butcher knife, had my credit card number stolen, shut my fingers in the car door, and broke the necklace my husband bought me for Mother’s Day. Needless to say, I’ve enjoyed June about as much as Justin Bieber enjoys wearing shirts.
When I’m sick or stressed, I’ve noticed that I’m more inclined to overspend. I think it’s something about just wanting to feel better–you know, the old “I feel crappy for the 5th day in a row, so I should treat myself and that will make me feel better” game. That’s fine if it’s within your budget, but a few bad days (or weeks) will hurt even more if you overspend.
Here are 10 ways you can practice self-care without blowing the budget:
- Request spa gift cards for birthdays/holidays. Massages, mmm.
- Meditate. This is a tough one for me, but there are tons of apps and YouTube videos to help. (I’ve done the free trial of the MindSpace app before and liked it–it’s about 10 min of guided mediation, which seems to work well with my limited attention span. I first tried it while pregnant and it led to many good naps. That’s neither here nor there, though.)
- Take a walk or just sit outside. If sunshine can help make wilted plants look better, it will help my wilted immune system, right?
- Do some yoga. Yoga with Adriene is a good, free series on YouTube.
- Take a nap. By far one of the best self-care practices. Naps help everything. Why do you think we make toddlers take them regularly?
- Grab coffee/a beer/a cupcake/a PB&J/anything with a friend. Get out of your own head for a bit.
- Turn off the T.V., say buh-bye to social media, and read. Get a good book from the library and curl up before bedtime.
- Skip a fatty treat and make a smoothie. Or if you’re me, eat a donut and wash it down with a smoothie. Find a good recipe on Pinterest and load up your immune system with fruits and veggies. Baby spinach is cheap if bought in bulk and can be mixed with many different seasonal fruits. Get yo’ vitamins.
- Buy some good tea or coffee. Make a cup. Sit. Enjoy.
- Do a brain dump in the morning. When I wake up feeling anxious, this practice is a huge help. It gets the mess of thoughts out of my head.
**Bonus idea (only half kidding)** Buy the good tissues. Trust me, I’m now a tissue connoisseur after blowing my nose for a month straight. The Aldi ones hurt. Spring for the Kleenex with lotion and aloe. Live large.
How do you practice self-care without overspending?