Simple Self-care Practices for a Healthy Mind and Body

Need help treating yourself better? Try these ideas!

women reading outside, practicing self-care tips for a healthy mind and body

Self-care relates to wellness in all areas of your life. For example, you can’t effectively meditate if you aren’t getting enough sleep. And all the exercising in the world probably won’t eliminate much stress if you are only eating unhealthy foods.

Related: 10 Reasons Why Being In Nature is Good for You

While for some, self-care looks like a warm bubble bath and a glass of wine, as Thought Catalog writer Brianna Wiest wrote, “Self-care is often a very unbeautiful thing. It is making a spreadsheet of your debt and enforcing a morning routine and cooking yourself healthy meals and no longer just running from your problems and calling the distraction a solution.”

So what areas do you need to round out to develop whole healthiness? What self-care practices do you need to lean into? Here are 36 self-care practice ideas.


  • Call a friend you miss that you haven’t talked to in awhile
  • Write a thank you note to someone
  • Read a book that doesn’t have to do with work
  • Finish a small thing on your to-do list and cross it off
  • Draw and don’t care how unrealistic it looks
  • Write in a journal
  • Listen to something that makes you laugh
  • Turn off all noise and sit in silence or go on a walk without headphones
  • Start a compliment book and write down the nice things people say about you to read later
  • Go outside for at least 15 minutes every day
  • Make a tiny goal you can keep for a week and celebrate when you succeed
  • Call your parent or partner and tell them why you appreciate them
  • Pray or verbally express to the universe what you are grateful for
  • Make a to-do list to clean out your brain
  • Listen to a favorite song and do only that: listen
  • Do the thing you’re really dreading so you can get it over with
  • Write down things that are challenging you and include possible solutions
  • Get rid of unworn clothes in your closet

Related: 7 Health Benefits of Sunlight


  • Step away from your phone or screen and close your eyes for 60 seconds
  • Take a nap
  • Get enough to drink. If you hate water, use some water drops to sweeten it up.
  • Snack on vegetables and fruit
  • Get enough sleep
  • Don’t drink caffeine or look at your phone before going to bed
  • Take lunch break walks
  • Take three deep breaths
  • Force your body to laugh and see if laughing comes naturally after that
  • Stretch
  • Master two healthy meals
  • Do your exercises outdoors. Research shows outdoor workouts improve mood and self-esteem more than indoor
  • Dance. Maybe this is cliche, but it’s effective
  • Get ready for the day
  • Snuggle: with your partner, your child, a pet, or a blanket
  • Explore somewhere in your area you’ve always wanted to check out before
  • Light a candle, put on music, and clean the kitchen

Yes, self-care takes time and effort. And sometimes it’s lovely and feels easy and sometimes it doesn’t. But your health—mental and physical—is worth it.


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