It can be really tough to remember to put ourselves first. But when we give, give, give without replenishing ourselves, it’s like we’re tackling a mountain on an empty stomach. We need to be fully resourced to face the world. Practicing restorative selfcare is one of the ways we can ensure that we’re fueled up and ready to tackle life.

When I talk about self care, I’m not talking about the fluffy stuff that we hear about so often like bubble baths and lighting candles — although if that works for you, that’s awesome. But rather, I’m talking about doing the things that allow us to feel whole and full and rejuvenated. This is going to look different for all of us. We should be looking for activities that allow us to feel a genuine sense of restoration and renewal — those things that make us feel a little fuller and lighter once we’re done with them.

Psychologists have actually identified 6 types of self-care: physical, practical, emotional, mental/intellectual, social, spiritual. It’s important to have an understanding of how and when to fill each of those buckets for ourselves. The good news is that getting outside and going on outdoor adventures is a solid way to support at least 5 out of 6 of those self care areas. 

Here’s a breakdown of each of the 6 types of self care and activities that can help you fill each bucket:

Physical: activities that help to improve your well-being, like going on a hike, drinking enough water, or taking a walk.

Emotional: activities that allow you to process your full range of emotions, like journaling, meeting with a therapist, or expressing your creativity.

Mental/intellectual: activities that stimulate your intellect, like reading a book, tackling a tough climbing route, or solving a puzzle.

Social: activities that help deepen relationships with the people in your life, like camping with friends, making time to call your family members, or going on a group hike.

Spiritual: activities that allow you to nurture your spiritual side, like being in nature, meditation, or taking time for self reflection

Practical: tasks that help you fulfill core part of your life, like making dentist appointments, organizing your home, or creating a budget

So whether you’re filling your physical self care bucket with a bike ride or your mental self care bucket working through a tough climbing route or your social self care bucket with a camping trip with friends, getting outside can help you to feel more restored and ready to tackle your world.

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