I seriously don’t know what I would do without my Self Care Kit. It’s helped me through some of the roughest times in my life and I know that it’s going to come in handy time and time again.
So what is a Self Care Kit?
A Self Care Kit is basically just a few things that bring you joy and make you feel better. It can be anything from your favorite lotion to you fave pajamas — or even your go to video games when you need a pick me up, like I mentioned in this blog post.
It doesn’t even have to be physical. Maybe in your kit you have your favorite song, an affirmation you like to repeat to yourself, or even a positive memory. The idea here is just to have a couple of different options to take care of yourself and, if you need it, build you back up.
When I was crafting my personal Self Care Kit, I knew I was going to stick to The Big Three: mind, body, and soul. Obviously.
I recommend you do the same. This ensures that when you reach for your Self Care Kit, you’re taking care of all of you — not just one piece.
I’m going to go into detail about what I’ve included in my Self Care Kit. I hope once you’re done reading, you’ll be inspired to create your own!
I have 2 categories for my “mind” in my Kit: Relax and Distract.
If I’m reaching for my Kit with the intention to relax — maybe it was a long day at work or I did something physically exhausting — then my go-to is a good book. The book changes with my mood and also my current reading list. Currently in my Kit I’ve got A Field Guide to Getting Lost.
I allow myself to ease into the book. I read each page slowly, carefully. I’m not rushing to accomplish anything: I’m just relaxing.
On the other hand, what if I’m looking to distract? That usually means my mental state is not the best. Maybe my depression or anxiety are especially high that day. In that case, I’m picking up one of the games I mentioned in The Best Games to Escape Your Depression.
I carefully selected each of these games because of the easy nature and simple tasks. This way I can focus on the game, but I’m not getting overwhelmed by it. I let my mind get distracted so I am no longer plagued by intrusive thoughts.
For me, taking care of my body is pretty straight forward. This is the only part of my Self Care Kit that is a physical “kit.”
When I need a pick me up, I reach for a small basket in my bathroom. This basket has my favorite face mask, my favorite lotion, and my favorite nail polish in it. I pamper myself with a small little at-home spa day.
Again, in this process I take my time — I don’t rush a single step. This is time for me to enjoy myself and enjoy my life. Often, I will actually start with this step — Body — and after applying my nail polish and face mask, I’ll go into step 1 — Mind — by grabbing my book or my controller.
Taking care of my soul is something that I just recently made a priority. It has made a world of difference in my life. Like Mind, this piece has 2 parts — but instead of picking and choosing, I intertwine them.
My “family” in my sorority (Chi O y’all <3 ) had a tradition of giving our Little Sisters a Happy Thoughts Jar as a gift. These jars are just simple little containers filled with small paper strips. On each strip is something that makes that particular person happy. If you’re ever having a rough day, you pull out a slip, read it, and instantly smile!
I thought this was perfect to include in my Self Care Kit.
I have a small jar filled to the brim with happy thoughts. My happy thoughts are everything ranging from my favorite video games to long walks with my dog to my favorite foods and even just some inspirational quotes. Whatever I know will make me happy gets put into the jar! If I have a particularly happy memory, I’ll jot that down and slide it into the jar.
Once I’ve read my happy thought and let it bring me joy, it’s time to meditate on it.
Meditation offers loads of benefits ranging from stress relief, increased self awareness, and improved emotional health.
I’m a huge fan of Metta meditation, also called loving-kindness meditation, in particular. This is especially true when I’m reaching for my Self Care Kit.
So I read my happy thought and I take it to heart. Then I set a timer for 5 minutes (with some background sounds, of course!) and I breath deeply as I evaluate that thought and how it makes me feel. That’s the feeling I associate with love and kindness for myself. I try to let that sensation wash over me.
Then I take that sensation and wish it upon others — my close friends and family maybe, or maybe even the person who cut me off on the highway. I’m just trying to spread the joy and bring peace to myself.
Once I’ve gone through my steps, I almost always feel better. Even if it’s just a bit, it’s an improvement.
I highly recommend everyone get some sort of Self Care Kit together. Even if it’s just a checklist of things you know will help you get to a better place, that’s enough!
So what will you put in your kit?
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