When was the last time you took a break and did something just for you? Between busy work, family, and studying schedules, it can be tough to find time for self-care. Luckily, taking care of ourselves doesn’t have to be expensive. Here are some free or almost-free ideas for inexpensive self care.
Stand up, go outside, and go for a walk. One of the simplest and most enjoyable ways to take care of yourself gives you the benefits of light exercise, vitamin D, and an escape from the screens that occupy most of our days. According to Harvard Medical School, walking can help you maintain a healthy weight, curb sweet-tooth cravings, reduce your cancer risk, improve your joints, and enhance your immune system. And it is completely free.
Putting your financial house in order can help you avoid financial worries and build a plan to improve your finances over time. Understanding where your money comes from, where it goes, how much you have, and how much you owe is important for households of varying financial means. If your employer offers PayActiv as a benefit, you have access to financial tools at no charge.
Do you get enough sleep every night? If you are one of the millions of people who could use a little more shut-eye, sneaking away for a mid-day nap can do you good. It’s so important in some cultures that entire cities shut down on weekday afternoons for a siesta. According to the National Institute of Health, naps of up to 30 minutes can help your memory, improve learning, enhance body functions, and aid emotional stability.
When hunched over phone screens, slouching on the couch, and straining our bodies at work, it’s no surprise to see our postures suffer. The U.S. National Library of Medicine shares that bad posture can lead to spinal problems, pain, loss of balance, and other health problems. Being mindful of your posture and exercise are free and can help. Also, work with your employer to ensure you maintain an ergonomic workspace.
Your teeth may be a great tool to understand your overall health. According to a British health study, good oral hygiene even correlates to life expectancy. Yes, you read that right, healthy teeth can signal that you’ll live longer. So you should be mindful to brush, floss, and head to the dentist for recommended twice-annual cleanings.
Learning new skills and about topics that you enjoy can help keep your brain sharp and focused. With PayActiv as a workplace benefit, members have free access to a trove of resources to learn about personal finance. Websites like Kahn Academy, YouTube, and Wikipedia give you free access to a seemingly unlimited supply of information at no cost.
With so many demands on your time and budget, it’s easy to make excuses to take care of others and ignore taking care of yourself. But your physical wellness, financial wellness, and overall personal wellness matter. You have the power to improve your wellness, and you don’t have to break the bank getting there.