As I have stated many times before, self-care is so important. It’s important at every age, but it becomes even more of a necessity as we reach adulthood. Between work, exercise, making dinner, maintaining friendships, and (trying) to get enough sleep, things can get overwhelming. Add kids to the mix, and your stress may multiply. Burnout is an awful feeling, and if you prioritize self care, even in little ways, you may reduce your stress by a lot. You should always value your health.
Below are seven self care habits you should adopt by the time you turn 30:
Know When to End Friendships and Relationships
Toxic relationships can exist in so many different ways. A toxic relationship could be with a co-worker, a ‘best’ friend, a significant other, or even with a parent. This self-care necessity was the most difficult for me. Walking away from long friendships is very difficult, but if they aren’t treating you well, it will be for the best.
So how do you know if you’re around toxic people? If any of your friends, co-workers, or family members make you feel bad about yourself in anyway, you need to walk away or at least limit your communication with them. When you’re done hanging out with a friend or visiting a parent, you should feel happy, enriched, or rejuvenated. If you consistently leave feeling sad, frustrated, or hurt, it may be time to cut ties.
Stick to a Skin Care Regimen
Make an appointment with an esthetician so you know exactly what your skin needs. Just because a product is getting a lot of hype, doesn’t mean it’s right for your skin. Getting a facial can be expensive, but there are ways to get more affordable ones. As I live in Los Angeles, I usually go to HeyDay when my skin needs a pick-me-up. They have made a luxurious service more affordable to the masses. You could also go to a school for esthetics to get a facial from a student.
Once you learn your skin type and what your skin needs to be healthy, invest in the right products. And don’t forget that SPF! You should be wearing sunscreen on all exposed skin every day, even in the winter.
Go to the Doctor
Yes, most people are pretty good about going to the doctor when they are actually sick and need an antibiotic or they are suffering from a painful toothache. But what about when you are healthy? Annual screenings and check-ups are absolutely self-care habits you should adopt by age 30.
You should be going to the dentist for a cleaning twice a year (this can help prevent cavities and the need for painful root canals), a gynecologist once a year for your annual pap smear, your primary care physician once a year for a physical, and to a dermatologist every two years for a skin screening. Skin cancer is deadly, but it’s completely curable if it’s caught early. If you slacked on sunscreen during your teen years and in your twenties, you may even want to consider going yearly.
Once you reach 35, getting a yearly mammogram will need to be a yearly thing as well. Talk to your primary care physician to see what doctors you should see and how often. You only get one body!
Consider Seeing a Psychologist
Even if you don’t feel like you are suffering from depression, talking to a psychologist a few times a year can help you prevent burnout in the future. Reach out to your insurance company to see what is covered or look into Hers or Cerebral.
Stick up for Yourself
As a child, we had our parents to stick up for us when there was in issue. As an adult, you have to stick up for yourself, no one is going to do that for you. Know when to say no, and stick to your decision. This is especially true when it comes to work. Yes, you always want to be proactive at the office, but if you always say yes to tasks, you may end up getting taken advantage of. Say no when you think it shouldn’t be your responsibility.
The same can go for friendships. For example, If a friend asks you to help them move, but when you asked for the same in the past and they said no, you may also want to say no.
By read, I don’t mean a funny list posts from BuzzFeed, or a celeb focused post from Refinery29, I don’t even mean the news (although you should to stay up-to-date on current events). I mean actual novels. This could be a romance novel from a newer author, a thriller from an established author like Stephen King, or a classic novel from an author like Ernest Hemingway or even Jane Austen. Find your style, and read as much as you can.
Reading can be very relaxing and it can help open your mind to new ways of thinking.
Take Social Media Breaks
I’m a huge fan of social media (obviously), but things like Instagram and Facebook can become very toxic due to how obsessive people can get with it. Instagram with its filters and only showing the perfect edited version of life can end up making you feel bad and inadequate, and Facebook showcasing complaints from friends and family. Both can be draining.
Every few months, consider taking a break from social media. I’m not saying to delete your accounts, but maybe just delete the apps from your phone for a little while. Even 48 hours away from social media could help your mental health.
Besides the seven I mentioned, what self care habits have you adopted over the past few years? Let us know in the comments below!