The 5 Day Self Care Challenge
We know that we matter. But we’re not always good at putting ourselves first.
Why is that?
We are conditioned to place others first.
- Not make a fuss about our experiences
- To downplay our troubles and anxiety
- People that place their families first (often a role for women)
- People that place their careers first (often a role for men)
We often don’t:
- take time for ourselves unless we’re so sick we can’t function
- Rest until we are at our breaking point
- take time to check in with our emotions and process them on a daily basis
- Eat and nourish our bodies with good for us foods
- Give our bodies the exercise it needs
- Give our mind the tools it needs to thrive
- We have anxiety and depression we feel ashamed to talk about
- We keep putting our needs on the back burner
- We prioritize our fear to please and take care of others first
- We feel burnt-out
- We snap at our loved ones for silly things
- We mindlessly scroll social media to distract and cope
We often fall into the trap:
- Thinking that self care must involve beauty related treatments
- Thinking that self care must involve spending money on yourself
We make excuses NOT to take care of ourselves:
- I don’t have the time
- I don’t have the money
- I don’t need it
But you do.
You need self care.
Say it out loud with me, “I need self care.”
You need time to replenish yourself. Be that your body, your mind, or your spirit (or all three!). You need this time to take address your needs and slow down and be alive.
You need this, you need this, you need this.
Self care doesn’t have to cost money you don’t have and it certainly doesn’t need to be this crazy time-suck from your day.
You can practice self care in as little as 60 seconds every day, or when you remember to.
A minute of self care daily can help you get through stressful situations.
5 minutes of self care daily can improve your mood.
20 minutes or self care can improve your quality of life.
20+ minutes can help you move mountains.
The 5 day challenge
Before we can make a 30 day, 60 day, or lifelong commitment, it’s important to break it down in to a bite sized, doable chunk. Something you can easily master and feel good about. This will help you build the confidence to keep going, pick it back up when you forget, and make it part of your daily ritual.
This challenge is simple: practice self care for consecutive 5 days.
There are just 3 items to check off before you get started:
- Select your start day.
- Select the amount of time you’d like to try. With crazy schedules, there is no time demand – this part is entirely up to you. If the idea of 20 minutes of self care is just too much – that’s ok! I have dozens of ideas for self care that will add 5 minutes or less to your crazy day. I know how hard it can be to get started, and I don’t believe you need to punish yourself for not having more time.
- Tell someone! We are social creatures that thrive on accountability and support from others! This is also crucial if you are a primary care giver and will need to delegate something in order to take this time for yourself. Telling someone can also open a conversation about support or excite someone in your life to try this with you! And we can all benefit from some self love!
Now that you’re fired up to do this challenge, let’s talk about self care!
My definition of self care is time spent giving back to your mind, body or soul.
The activities for self care are endless. If it brings you joy, gives back to your mental health, physical health or spiritual health – then I’d wager it could be called self care.
The only exception I like to make to this is rigorous exercise. While I’m all about a good cardio session – strenuous exercise usually depletes the body and creates a need to give back so that you can recover and grow stronger. Therefore, I think it’s equally as important to engage in some self care stretches after your session, fuel your body with a snack, or take a conscious moment to reflect on how good you feel (or all 3!)
I’ve made a list of some of my favorite ideas for self care below, but you are 100% allowed to take this list and make it your own. In fact, I encourage you to spend some time thinking about what you need in your day to make a positive impact. What can you do that takes 5 minutes or less to have a better day? 10 minutes? 20 minutes?
Here are my favorite self care ideas, based on how much time you have:
60 seconds to 20 minutes (life is crazy and it’s ok, we’ve all been there!)
- Deep belly breathing
- EFT (Emotional Freedom technique) aka Tapping
- Being present in the moment through your senses (notice 3 things with each sense – 3 things you can see, hear, touch, smell or taste (if applicable)).
- A healthy snack (good fuel for your body!)
- A quick stretch
- Meditation (guided or free)
- Smelling your favorite essential oils
- Place your feet in grass (opens your root chakra and helps you feel grounded)
Around 20 minutes or more
- Soak your feet in warm water
- Take a bath/soak in epsom salt
- Self-guided foot massage
- Foam rolling – self myofascial release
- Semi-supine from the Alexander technique
- Meditation (guided or free)
- Engaging with your favorite hobby
- Reading (not scrolling on social media)
- Journey into nature – walk or ride depending on your abilities
Set Yourself up for Success
As with any challenge, it’s helpful to craft a plan that’s easy to execute. Once you know your start date, write down the self care activity or activities you’d like to try.
A sample 5 day challenge could look like this:
- Monday – 5 minutes of deep belly breathing
- Tuesday – 5 minutes of being present in the moment through the 5 senses
- Wednesday – 20 minute epsom salt bath
- Thursday – 10 minutes of journaling
- Friday – 2 minutes of meditation
When you know what is on the agenda, it’ll make it easier for you to do the activity.
You won’t be scrambling for supplies if you need them, or worse yet, let that be an excuse not to do it for that day.
Now that you know the basics, have a few ideas in your head and have picked your start date- you are ready to do the challenge!
I am so excited for you to start this journey and I hope it’s one you’ll come back to again and again in the future.
I 100% believe in you to complete this and I remind you that you are absolutely worthy of this fantastic 5 day challenge.
Don’t be afraid to share on social media! It’s something positive to add to your feed #the5dayselfcarechallenge