Self-care on a budget

Am I the only one who gets tired of self-care lists that include pricey crap? “Take yourself out for a mani-pedi!” Well, sorry, I don’t always have an extra $80 burning a hole in my pocket.

Here’s my list of affordable ways to care for yourself:

  • Take a long, hot bath.
  • Do your hair and/or makeup.
  • Go for a walk.
  • Enjoy a cup of coffee or tea in a “happy place” — on your front porch (which is where I escape from my kids), the back deck or a favorite cafe.
  • Journal.
  • Write a gratitude list.
  • Color. (You can find many beautiful coloring pages for free online.)
  • Go to bed 30 minutes earlier than normal.
  • Paint your own nails — or, if you’re as bad at it as I am, have a friend do it, then return the favor.
  • Meditate. (If you don’t know how, try the Headspace app — the first 10 sessions are free — or choose a guided meditation from Youtube.)
  • Make yourself a favorite meal or dessert.
  • Do some yoga. (Check out FitnessBlender’s “Stress-Busting Yoga Pilates Workout.”)
  • Call up someone you haven’t talked to in a long time.
  • Unfollow someone on social media whose posts always annoy or upset you.
  • Take a nap.
  • Buy a new book, or hit the library.
  • Prep some healthy snacks and keep in the fridge so you’re not tempted to grab junk. (I like to buy some favorite fruits and veggies and prep them as soon as I get home, then put into Tupperware.)
  • Do a “tech detox” for a few hours (or even a whole day, if possible).
  • Spend time in nature.

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