As we welcome a new year, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed with goals, tasks, and a long list of to-dos. At the same time, it’s an opportunity to reminisce on what you did and didn’t do in the previous year.

Now’s the time to make decisions that will affect the entire flow of your year. Self-care means prioritizing your mental health and doing things that make you happy. Intentionality is the fuel that drives every decision we make for ourselves as the years of our life go by.

There are times when we let ourselves get carried away by life and all that it supposedly entails. Work, relationships, home obligations and the likes that beg for our time won’t matter if we break down mentally. The beginning of being intentional about your self care starts with realizing and recognizing that you are worthy of self care, you deserve to rejuvenate and take some time off anytime you wish not just when you’re burned out.

Self care is not a fling, it’s a necessity, because without it we can become literal zombies; dead to our desires, needs and hobbies while we live continuously for others. If you have decided to make self care a priority this year, then you must be intentional about it. How can you be more intentional about making self care a priority?

Change your Perspective about Self care

When you think of self care not just as an escape from stress but a necessity, you’ll be more intentional about it. Little things like seeing a therapist regularly, going for a pedicure, just maintaining the self care routine that you’ve created for yourself. There are no excuses for self care, so don’t ever give yourself one, enjoy what keeps your mental health in one piece. Why? Because you deserve it!

Create a Self Care Routine

A routine is great because it gives our life rhythm and helps it stick. Every new week make a list of things you would like to do for yourself, from journaling to taking walks, to having a long bath, to just watching a movie. When you make this list be intentional about seeing it all happen.

Follow each routine diligently and see how much better you’ll feel everyday. Research has shown countless times that self care enhances your daily actions and health, so it shouldn’t be just a fling.

Make Self Care a Habit

Self care is different for everyone, what works for you may not work for another so don’t try to do what someone else does. Ask yourself questions like what do you need right now? What do you lack? Build your self care activities around the answer to these questions and stick with it.

Practice self care on a daily basis, make a habit out of it; for instance setting out a time of the day to journal or have a hot bath. By intentionally doing these things everyday, it becomes an effortless activity. Self care routines like mindfulness and meditation can be practiced early in the day, everyday until it becomes natural for you.

Seeing a therapist is also a form of self care, it’s prioritizing your mental health and psychological state. Seeing a therapist along with other self care routines will help enhance your overall health. From mental to physical to spiritual, self care has a huge impact in the quality of life we live which is why we have to be intentional about making it a priority.