As psychologists, we know that self-care is important to well-being. Life can be a challenge at times for everyone and having a balanced approach helps to prevent burnout and physical health problems.
Sometimes life gets busy and makes it extremely difficult to engage in self-care. One of those busy moments is the APA convention. As I write this blog at the end of a busy convention day, I realize that self-care takes about as much effort as it takes to do other important task.
Throughout this convention, I have been working to balance my schedule and engage in self-care. For example, exercise and fitness have been an integral part of my life since being a graduate student. Being at convention with a full day of activities sometimes makes me feel like I should avoid practicing my typical self-care activities Yet, I have been motivated thought the past three days to have a little balance.
My self-care activities have included:
- Went to the gym to exercise
- Walked to the convention center from my hotel, which is several blocks away, instead of taking a cab
- Took the stairs instead of the escalator (if possible)
- Used relaxation techniques
- Watched a little reality TV
- Attended division social hours
According to the APA Practice Organization (APAPO), balancing a healthy mind and body enhances our personal and professional lives. Engaging in my self-care activities definitely gave me the energy to make it through the day. Below are some additional tips for the APAPO:
- Maintain awareness of stressors
- Use self-assessment and plan coping strategies
- Get enough sleep
- Maintain a healthy diet
- Nurture meaningful relationships
- Allow for leisure time