Self-Care is Essential, Not Selfish

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Self-Care is Essential, Not Selfish

Self-Care: Care that is Underrated

Growing up, people are always taught to care for others. American society has promoted the stigma that it is selfish to for people to care for themselves. For many years, Americans’ physical and mental health have been sacrificed on the altar of unselfishness. Mothers are the prime example of people who sacrifice their own health for the sake of others. Most mothers devote their every waking hour to caring for their children, household, and spouse, so they forget to care for themselves. The idea of caring for yourself being acceptable and essential for health has been developed in only recent years.

Self-care does not mean for people to purely focus on themselves and forget their obligations to others. It simply means that they devote time to care for their health and well-being. Self-care can easily be done by taking a few hours a week to relax, make health decisions, and pursue a beloved activity. There are many reasons people should put the time and effort into caring for themselves.

Three Reasons for Physical Health

•Benefit Cardiovascular Health

Simple relaxation and exercise are two activities that must be on people’s self-care activity lists. The heart is a muscle that needs to be conditioned like the rest of the 640 muscles in the body. Aerobic workouts (e.g. running, walking, or elliptical) are intended for putting the heart to work. In addition to rigorous aerobic exercises, relaxation exercises activities are also essential (e.g. yoga, meditation, painting, going to the spa, or going to a dinner with friends) because the heart needs time to relax and recover from the stress of everyday life.

•Decrease Cancer Risk

Stress is notorious for being a carcinogen. When people take measures to reduce stress and make themselves happy, they are significantly reducing their risk of cancer. Modern women tend to under more stress than men because they have the responsibilities of their job, children, household, spouse, finances, etc. The large number of breast cancer prognostics each year probably correlates to the significant amount of stress in women’s lives. It is vital for women to start getting annual mammograms or ultrasounds around the age of thirty-five because early detection is key for survival. It is important to never skimp on important doctors’ appointments and tests for the sake of money, insurance, or time because it can mean the difference between life and death.

•Better Overall Health

People and their body have a two-way relationship. When people treat their body right, their body treats them right. When people eat a healthy diet, exercise, get enough sleep, and reduce stress, they become healthier overall.

Four Reasons for Mental Health

•Reduces Stress

Stress is the root of many bodily problems (e.g. suppressed immune system, peptic ulcers, acid reflux, and cancer). Stress can come from a variety of emotions, including sadness, resentment, and fear. If a person takes care of themselves through taking a hot bath, reading, going out with friends, etc., their stress will be reduced, which will improve their mental and physical health.

•Improved Memory

Adults needs an average of seven to nine hours of sleep per night. Due to work and lifestyle demands, most adults do not get the amount of sleep that they need. One of the purposes of sleep is to consolidate memories. When people manage to get enough sleep, their memory improves because their brain has more time to consolidate memories. People can manage to get enough sleep by chamomile tea, aromatherapy, yoga, and exercise. If they suffer from insomnia that is not resolved by natural methods, they should consult a physician.

•Improved Mood

Having fun, maintaining a social life, doing relaxing activities, and staying healthy improves people’s life satisfaction. When people are satisfied with their life, they possess consistent happiness, which makes their moods better.

•Improves Ability to Be an Effective Caregiver

Airlines advise people to put on their oxygen mask before helping someone else. The reason being is a person will not be much of a help to another person if he or she passes out from oxygen deprivation while in the process of helping them. People cannot be effective caregivers for other people if they are not effective caregivers to themselves. It is not selfish for a person to take the time to take care of themselves; it is unselfish because people the only way people can be effective caregivers is by being healthy themselves.


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