Let me tell you: Writing and reading about self-care are often a lot easier than actually practicing it. And I bet you'd be hard-pressed to find a woman who doesn't recognize the value of self-care in some form. That doesn't, however, mean we're all actively implementing and recognizing it in our daily lives—though it's clear we should be!
I'm being more intentional about taking self-care seriously and I hope you make that promise to yourself, too. Check out the 99 ideas below—rounded up by the West Michigan Woman team—that could be used for sprinkling little bits of self-care into your life.
1. Read a book.
2. Light your favorite candle.
3. Put your phone away while with friends.
4. Take a walk in your neighborhood.
5. Rewatch your favorite TV show.
6. Create your own yoga flow.
7. Call a loved one.
8. Write a friend a handwritten note.
9. Have a movie night.
10. Journal what you're grateful for that day.
11. Go for a jog.
12. Treat yourself to something you normally wouldn't.
13. Learn how to meditate or try a new wellness practice such as breathwork, acupuncture, or Reiki.
14. Gather clothing or goods to donate to charity.
15. Try out a new podcast.
16. Invest in a humidifier.
17. Take an aimless drive.
18. Volunteer to help a neighbor or your favorite local nonprofit.
19. Try a new healthy recipe—or let your significant other/children make something for YOU.
20. Schedule any outstanding appointments you've been meaning to take care of.
21. Plan a home improvement project.
22. Take a day off, just because.
23. Research destinations you want to visit.
24. Create a holiday shopping budget.
25. Visit your local library.
26. Play a board game or cards with friends.
27. Buy yourself flowers.
28. Declutter your junk drawer. We all have one.
29. Get a facial or massage.
30. Set a reminder to do a full-body scan to release any tension you've been holding throughout the day.
31. Go to therapy.
32. Enjoy a cocktail.
33. Knit a scarf.
34. Bust out your cozy socks.
35. Look up your hometown's historic women.
36. Wash your sheets and comforter.
37. Have a bonfire with friends.
38. Once a month, unfollow 10 social media accounts that don't inspire or serve you.
39. Go tech-free in the morning or choose one day a week to have a digital detox.
40. Implement and listen to positive affirmations.
41. Establish a morning, after-work and nighttime routine to make you feel grounded.
42. Update your résumé.
43. Send letters to your local representatives.
44. Create dedicated alone time for yourself each day.
45. Visit a new restaurant.
46. Adopt a pet—or a plant.
47. Join an enthusiast group for an interest you have.
48. End your evening with a cup of tea.
49. Don't take yourself too seriously.
50. Set short-term goals for the next year and steps to accomplish them.
51. Connect with a professional in a career or skill you'd like to improve upon.
52. Become a mentor to someone.
53. Go through old photos and frame your favorites.
54. Come up with a clever Halloween costume.
55. Pet a dog or cat or other animal.
56. Try something new you assume you wouldn't be good at.
57. Listen to your favorite artist.
58. Get some vitamin D—with sunscreen on, of course.
59. Rearrange a room in your house.
60. Learn a new skill or take an online class.
61. Start a collection of some kind.
62. Lie down and stare at the ceiling.
63. Write down the things you like about yourself.
64. Set boundaries.
65. Clean out your refrigerator.
66. Research your family history.
67. Watch a sunrise or sunset from a beautiful location.
68. Learn a TikTok dance—and then laugh at yourself.
69. Start a book or podcast club with friends.
70. Learn to change a tire and check your car's oil.
71. Ask an older relative about their childhood.
72. Delete old emails and shred old paperwork.
73. Rearrange your pantry.
74. Do some stretching in the morning and before bed.
75. Create a to-do list for your week.
76. Drink enough water.
77. Get enough sleep.
78. Sing your favorite songs.
79. Bake something sweet and enjoy it without guilt.
80. Watch YouTube videos that make you laugh.
81. Make your bed.
82. Watch a documentary about space and ponder the vastness of the universe.
83. Add a tacky lawn ornament to your front yard that makes you smile.
84. Create a playlist of throwback hits.
85. Go window shopping.
86. Forgive yourself for your mistakes.
87. Enjoy breakfast in bed.
88. Go bird watching.
89. Cry, if you need to.
90. Take a selfie when you're feeling beautiful.
91. Research ways to further your education.
92. Do something that made you happy when you were younger.
93. Use your lunchbreak to truly take a break.
94. Clean up litter from your local park or beach.
95. Paint your living room a calming color.
96. Make up or re-create a dance routine you used to know.
97. Go to a museum.
98. Enjoy your morning coffee uninterrupted.
99. Do nothing.
Self-care means something different to everyone, so remember: This list is far from exhaustive. What are some of your favorite ways to show yourself some love?
Written by Sarah Suydam, Staff Writer for West Michigan Woman.