Last Updated on January 9, 2024
Self-care is important for everyone, but it is especially important for women. We often have a lot of responsibilities and obligations that can be overwhelming, and we sometimes forget to take care of ourselves.
So off we go to the internet and see what dr. Google has to say, and we find a gazillion self-care ideas, self-care routines, self-care practice points, and so many suggestions for practicing self-care that we might feel that sense of overwhelm.
So, let’s simplify things a bit and take a closer look at what self care is, and isn’t, because self care mistakes can set you back instead of helping you to move forward.
What is real self-care? How do we make it part of our daily routine? How do we practice self-care in the most healthy way? It’s easy to start an activity or make a plan with good intentions, but mistakes can happen, my friend.
In this blog post, we will discuss the five most common self-care mistakes that women make when it comes to caring for themselves, how to avoid them and how to create a true self-care plan that is personal and works well for you.
What is the Big Deal About Self-Care, Anyway?
You’re a woman, and you’re busy. You’ve got a lot on your plate, and you don’t always have time to take care of yourself the way you’d like to.
But here’s the thing: self-care is important. It’s not just about pampering yourself or taking a day off from work. It’s about taking care of your physical and mental health so that you can be your best self.
When you take care of yourself, you’re able to show up for your family and friends, and you’re able to be more productive at work. You’re also less likely to get sick, and you’ll have more energy to do the things you love.
So what’s the big deal about self-care, anyway? It’s simple: it’s about taking care of yourself so that you can be your best self. And that’s a pretty big deal.
Let’s delve further into the ways we can sabotage ourselves by making these five self-care mistakes, as well as making sure we understand what self-care is, and what is actually self-soothing.
Self Care vs Self Soothing: Understand the Difference
When it comes to taking care of yourself, it’s important to know the difference between self-care and self-soothing.
Self-care is all about taking proactive steps to improve your physical and mental health. This might include things like exercise, healthy eating, getting enough sleep, and spending time with loved ones.
On the other hand, self-soothing is about calming yourself down in the moment when you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed. This might involve activities like reading, listening to music, or taking a relaxing bath.
Both self-care and self-soothing are important for maintaining your well-being.
But self-care is about prevention, while self-soothing is about managing stress in the moment.
So when you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a few minutes to calm yourself down with some self-soothing activities. And don’t forget to schedule some time for self-care into your week so that you can prevent stress before it starts.
5 Self-Care Mistakes to Avoid
1 | Assuming self-care is an extra-curricular instead of a consistent part of your life
One potential self-care mistake that women make is assuming that it’s something extra-curricular instead of a consistent part of their lives.
Here’s why that matters: when we don’t make time for self-care, it can lead to feeling overwhelmed, burnt out, and like we’re constantly running on empty. That’s not how we’re meant to feel! We’re meant to feel confident, capable, and good enough exactly as we are.
So how do we avoid making this mistake?
By getting clear on what self-care looks like for us, personally, and then making it a priority in our lives. That might mean setting aside 20 minutes each day for a cup of tea and some quiet reflection or taking yourself regularly.
How often you do it isn’t as important as the fact that you’re making it a priority in your life. So if you’ve been making this mistake, I encourage you to explore what self-care looks like for you and then commit to doing it every day. You deserve it!
2 | Assuming that any self-care activity will be a good fit for you
As women, we are always told that we need to take care of ourselves. And that’s true! We need to make sure that we are taking care of our physical, mental, and emotional health. But sometimes, in our quest to take care of ourselves, we can make a mistake. We can assume that any self-care activity will be a good fit for us.
The reality is that not all self-care activities are a good fit for all women. What works for one woman might not work for another. So it’s important to be thoughtful about what kind of self-care you need. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some questions to ask yourself:
- What do I need right now?
- What will help me feel more relaxed?
- What will help me feel more energized?
- What will help me feel more connected to myself?
- What will help me feel more balanced?
Answering these questions can help you narrow down the activities that might be a good fit for you. And remember, it’s okay to experiment! You might find that an activity that you thought wasn’t a good fit for you actually ends up being exactly what you needed.
3 | Reacting to a life situation with avoidance self-care
Avoiding our problems won’t make them go away. In fact, it will only make them worse. That’s because when we avoid our problems, we don’t give ourselves the opportunity to deal with them head-on.
We might think we’re taking care of ourselves by indulging in an activity that makes us feel good in the moment, but in reality, we’re just putting our heads in the sand. A term for this is ‘avoidance self-care’.
Examples of avoidance self-care include:
- Binge-watching TV instead of dealing with our emotions
- Eating junk food instead of healthy food
- Shopping online instead of facing our financial reality
- Staying in bed all day instead of getting up and taking care of our responsibilities
Avoidance of self-care might give us a temporary fix, but it’s not going to solve our problems.
The next time you’re faced with a stressful life situation, instead of avoiding it, try one of these healthy coping mechanisms: talk to a friend or family member about what’s going on, write down your thoughts in a journal, or take some time for yourself to relax and de-stress.
By dealing with our problems head-on, we can start to work through them and find lasting solutions.
4 | Assuming that overindulgence is healthy self-care
When it comes to self-care, it’s important to find a balance that works for you. For some people, that might mean taking a relaxing bath every night, while others might prefer to get outside for a brisk walk.
However, it’s important to avoid assuming that more is always better. Just because something is good for you doesn’t mean that you should do it to excess.
For example, a small amount of dark chocolate can be good for your health, but eating an entire bar every day is probably not the best idea. The same goes for other activities like exercise and socializing. A little bit can be great for your mental and physical health, but too much can lead to burnout.
So, when it comes to self-care, remember to find what works for you and don’t overdo it.
5 | Rejecting self-care activities because “they didn’t work”
When it comes to self-care, it’s important to keep an open mind. Just because one particular activity didn’t work for you, doesn’t mean that all self-care activities are a waste of time.
Everybody is different, and what works for one person might not work for another. That being said, there are still some general guidelines that all women should follow when it comes to self-care. Here are a few things to avoid:
1. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Remember that you’re doing the best you can, and even small steps in the right direction can make a big difference.
2. Don’t compare yourself to others. We all have our own unique journey to follow, and comparing ourselves to others will only hold you back.
3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. It’s okay to admit that you need some assistance, and there’s no shame in reaching out to family and friends for support.
4. Lastly, don’t give up! Finding the perfect self-care routine takes time and patience, but it’s worth the effort. So keep exploring until you find something that works for you.
Final Thoughts: Avoiding Self Care Mistakes
Self-care is important, but it’s also important to avoid making common mistakes. In this article, we discussed five of the most common self-care mistakes that women make.
We talked about why these mistakes are harmful and offered some solutions so that you can start taking better care of yourself.
Remember to keep an open mind when exploring different self-care activities, and don’t be afraid to ask for help from family and friends. Most importantly, don’t give up! It takes time and patience to find the most effective, consistent self-care routine, but it’s worth the effort.