Do it Daily: the Power of Positive Habits

Do it Daily: the Power of Positive Habits

Why is self-care such a challenge for women?

I believe it’s because we believe our time could be put to better use tending to other concerns.  I believe it myself, many days (or at least I act as though I do, which is the same thing for practical purposes).  We also tend to take care of others’ needs before we take care of our own–which means we may never get around to doing things for ourselves.  I do this myself in the name of unselfishness–but my experience has shown this to be misguided.

It’s not selfish to set aside time to take care of yourself.

Taking good care of yourself can be the kindest thing you can do for the people around you.  When you take good care of your mind and your body, you’re in a better mood, more pleasant to be around and a lot more productive.  The people I live with definitely would rather have a cheerful wife and mama than a cranky one.

I started the year with a simple self-care plan, which I formulated after several crushing self-care defeats last year.  One of the keystones of my new plan was a short list I called “Do It Daily”; it listed things I committed to do every single day to keep myself healthy and sane.  It was amazing to me to see what an amazing difference these simple habits made to my sense of well-being.  Here’s my list:

  1. Read something uplifting.
  2. Drink water.
  3. Eat protein for breakfast.
  4. Take my allergy drugs, vitamins and fish oil.
  5. Break a sweat.
  6. Lift something heavy.
  7. Go to bed by 10:00.

What do you do daily to take care of yourself?

11 comments | Comment


  1. Damsel says:

    You’re absolutely right – self care so important!! My list has included getting up early so I have some quiet time each day, and spending time with my girlfriends on a regular basis (once or twice a month). I’m working on being more faithful at exercising, but that should be much easier now that the weather is *finally* warming up!!!

  2. Laura says:

    After many… many years of playing a martyr I have found what you have written here to be absolutely true!
    I would put everyone ahead of me but I wouldn’t doing it in a loving way. I made sure everyone knew how much I did and how little they helped. (yeah, sometimes I don’t even like myself).
    Anyhow, little by little I have learned (I’m slow) that I really do need to do things that are just for me.
    Some things that I have found to be a MUST for me .. to keep my sanity and allow me to smile are,
    ~ going to the movies every week with my sister in law. We go early, sit in the empty theater and catch up. We complain, we laugh , we talk about what happened on our favorite tv shows. I would miss that night out terribly if it ended.
    ~ going for a pedicure once a month. My feet tend to be a mess. I get cracked heels and very dry skin. Spending an hour at the spa once a month and having my feet taken care of by someone else makes me feel SO happy!!!!
    ~going for a short walk. I love to have a half hour to myself with no one talking to me or asking me for anything.

    I know that I have more but I won’t bore you with everything. Needless to say, I’m with you on this. Women need moments to themselves and rituals that are just for them. It *does* make for a much happier wife and Mamma.
    Great post!

    • Anne says:

      Your movie date sounds lovely! And it’s surprising to me how much difference 30 minutes of silence can make for my sense of well-being. We have young girls who are chatterboxes, which is mostly delightful, but I need a quiet moment sometimes!

      I have a pedicure gift certificate that’s been sitting in my drawer since Christmas. You’ve inspired me to go make an appointment!

  3. Madhu says:

    I believe if you really love your family then you must take care of yourself.
    1. keep yourself updated in all matters.
    2. No matter what read the newspaper everyday and some good affirmations.
    3. Smile more often.
    4. Tidy up your bed and kitchen before you retire to the bed.

  4. Yes! I just this week read a snippet about “radical self care” and the need for in times of crisis. That idea goes a bit beyond daily self-care routines, but it all makes the same sense. Great post.

  5. Angie says:

    I find self care so hard to do. Even though my children are practically out of the home, I still feel guilty. I have to justify anything I do for myself, but I can find more reasons to not take time for me. I think sometimes I am a ghost in the house, only appearing when someone wants or needs me to do something. I act as if I can always put what I need or want on the back burner. It does hurt my feelings when my kids don’t ever talk to me unless they want something. Ok enough of that. I am going to give it a try. Thank you for this info. Somehow it does make me feel less guilty. Thank you again.

  6. Jolene says:

    Someone once told me that women should do 2 things every day they love, one thing every week they treasure, and one bigger thing every month they will never forget. Because we’re worth the effort. Schedule the time in a planner, on a piece of paper or on a bulletin board, and make sure you stick to it. Let your loved ones know the plan and they will appreciate and love you more for taking care of yourself. Every day I read something uplifting or take a walk (depends on the weather). Every day, I write a letter to a friend or family member far away…sometimes I create a home made card to write in. Every week, I give time to my local animal shelter and wash out their food dishes, and bedding. Every month, I plan an outing with a good friend…we talk, we drink a lot of coffee and we catch up on our activities. Then we take our cameras and try completing a photo project. Try it, it changes your life for the better.

  7. Carina says:

    Thank you very much for this post, it reminded me once again that I MUST LEARN TO SAY NO sometimes! With my helper’s syndrome, that’s something I’m struggling with on a daily basis. I hate to let down people if they ask for a favour or anything, but I often end up doing way too many things worse than I want to, rather than to do less, but to do it with compassion instead. You’re so right when you say that, eventually, it will benefit those around me if I’m “selfish” from time to time…

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