Prioritizing Self-Care

The Key to A Happier and Healthier You

Dee Copeland, LCPC

Have you ever taken a single drop of colored dye and added it to a glass of water? What happens? I know, it’s not rocket science. The entire glass of water takes on the color of that single drop of dye. This speaks so loudly to me about the importance of mental health.

Mental health influences every area of our lives. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines mental health as our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. Mental health impacts how we experience and process emotions, thoughts, and the manner in which we interact and form relationships with others. It shapes how we view ourselves, others and the world in general. We can’t even compartmentalize our physical health from our mental health. According to the CDC, mental health is crucial to our overall health. Did you know depression can increase your risk of developing health problems such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes?

Because mental health permeates and impacts every area of our lives, it’s critical we make ourselves a priority and engage in self-care that nourishes and nurtures our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. Self-care is choosing to invest in yourself. Challenge yourself to think beyond viewing self-care as manicures, pedicures and bubble baths. Those things are great forms of self-care, but we can delve deeper.

Dee Copeland,  LCPC,  is a clinical supervisor with TidalHealth Behavioral Health.

Self-care also includes, but is not limited to:

• Setting boundaries
• Forgiving others
• Forgiving yourself
• Practicing gratitude
• Disconnecting from toxic relationships
• Embracing healthy relationships
• Learning to say no Learning to say yes
• Engaging in prayer or meditation
• Exercising
• Fueling your body with healthy foods
• Maintaining your preventative care doctor appointments
• Engaging in activities that bring you joy, laughter, or peace
• Taking naps
• Connecting with a therapist or life coach
• Limiting your television and or phone time
• Delegating tasks
• Healing from unresolved trauma
• Developing a sleep routine
• Recognizing your limitations
• Acknowledging your strengths
• Learning and implementing adaptive coping strategies

Self-care includes but far exceeds the adornment and pampering of our physical bodies; the nourishment of our mind and soul is also vital and necessary to the development and maintenance of good mental health. It’s an investment. The quality of your life depends on it. Invest wisely.

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