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8 Ways to Real Self-Care for Women

What better way to celebrate women's month than embracing a better you! We’re constantly bombarded by self-improvement advice for different facets of our lives—from beauty tips to fashion pointers to health and wellness advice—but it takes more than just looking good to actually feel good and be good. Here are eight ways you can start taking care of yourself.


1. Read more.

In a world where our smartphone is king, it seems reading has taken a backseat. But the recent turnout at the Big Bad Wolf book fair shows that we haven’t completely forgotten the joy of the printed word. Reading opens us up to a wealth of knowledge and takes us to a world that’s free of mundane tasks and constant stress. It doesn’t matter if you pick up a magazine, a novel, a collection of short stories, a recipe book, a biography or a graphic novel—just restart the habit of truly reading for pleasure. Consider that moment of reading as a much deserved break, and find your mind slowly opening up and your creative juices flowing again. No time? Try an audiobook; it’s a valid form of reading, but with your ears.


2. Practice gratitude.

The demands of daily life can be overwhelming at times that we tend to forget how blessed we truly are. Cursing under your breath for being stuck in traffic? Be thankful that you’re in the comforts of your car (or Grab service). A pile of deadlines hanging over your head? You’re lucky to have a job where your skills are needed and you’re compensated for your services. The kids tugging at your dress, asking to be read a bedtime story, or clinging to you while you attempt to declutter or finish a chore? Be grateful that you have a family who crave your attention and need your nurturing. Instead of complaining, try to focus on the positive side of every situation. Nurture this habit, and before you know it, no inconvenience or challenge can ever be as big. So what are you thankful for today?


3. Keep learning.

Knowledge is power, and nowadays, information is the new currency—so never stop learning. There is always something new to discover, always a new skill to learn, that will be valuable in the future. Start learning about something you’re interested in by reading a book, watching a video, or talking to someone who knows much about it. You can also try delving into learning about something that would be valuable in your career, such as a skill that would complement your current job. It doesn’t have to be anything major; it can be as simple as learning how to sew back a loose button or as complicated as how to invest in bitcoins. There are a number of videos and courses online to get you started. The goal is to just learn something—anything.


4. Ask for help.

If you’ve ever hesitated about asking someone for help, stop now. Contrary to what others may think, requesting for assistance isn’t a sign of weakness. Asking for help especially from someone who’s more skilled or knowledgeable than you when you’re stumped or unable to do a task is more efficient and helps you complete a job more quickly. The quicker you get something done, the sooner you can tick it off your to-do list. Getting assistance also avoids frustration and even burn out, as you spend less time trying to do something you can’t do.


5. Drink more water.

We can’t stress enough the value of drinking water. Aside from its health and beauty benefits, drinking lots of water daily prevents mind fog and maintains clarity of mind. Water also flushes out toxins in the body, which promotes overall good health that results in a stronger immune system—hence, you are able to fulfill more of your tasks, making you the superwoman that you are. Being well-hydrated also means an increase in energy, giving you more fuel to do more. Another bonus when you drink enough water: weight loss!


6. Go solo.

There’s nothing more liberating than learning to embrace time alone. Spending time by yourself allows you to know yourself more—what you like, what you don’t like—and gives you the space to understand yourself better. You don’t have to go big time like going on a solo travel adventure; simply taking the time to enjoy your own company will make a big difference. Enjoy a cup of coffee or a glass of wine by yourself, without your smartphone or laptop, and simply be. Indulge in a gourmet meal (yes, you can have carbs!) or go on a road trip. The possibilities when it comes to spending time with yourself because all you have to please is you.


7. Take a break.

Switch off your work mode, and take pleasure in leisure time. We all have to recharge sometime, and there’s no reason to feel guilty when you have to take a break to take care of yourself. Need a mental health day? Go ahead if you must. Want to get a spa pampering? Sure! Give yourself the time needed to rejuvenate and relax because you need it. Once you’ve gotten enough rest and relaxation, you’ll be able to tackle any challenge that comes your way because you’re reenergized and fired up for it.


8. Be kinder.

Whoever said women should be competing against each other, anyway? Life is hard enough, so don’t be a bitch to your fellow female. It’s time we support each other’s pursuits, eliminate the judging, and start embracing our differences. Each of us is unique, and we are all traversing a path different from each other, so there’s really no point in mean competition. It’s high time we celebrate each other’s triumphs, big or small, and encourage a kinder, gentler world for womankind. We’re all in this together, after all!