You can’t scroll your social media feed without seeing someone preaching about the value of self-care. The buzz word might get old but the concept is ageless. Humanity has been seeking balance and spiritual fulfillment since we got kicked out of the Garden.
The self-care concept has always been around.
When our grandmothers would quietly read the Bible or go in their “prayer closet” (sometimes an actual closet), that was self-care.
When our mamas would turn off everything electric and get off the phone during a bad storm, that was self-care. Personally, I loved those still, solemn moments because we’d cuddle and talk.
Those half day beauty salon trips? Self-care.
Remember those pretty journals that it seemed everyone used to have tucked away in a nightstand somewhere? Self-care.
It came in any number of situations – dropping the kids off at auntie’s house for the night, taking the phone off the hook for a few hours, evening walks after dinner or early morning coffee were all forms of indulging one’s self.
It seems a little harder these days, doesn’t it? It’s noisy. Everyone is constantly busy. Down time is not a thing anymore. Screens are everywhere. Distractions are unrelenting. But maybe we can use all that noise and distraction in our favor.
There are a few apps that have helped me or my loved ones take better care of ourselves, and you might benefit from them too. They are all free (!) and none of these resources leave you feeling guilty (I’m looking at you MyFitnessPal).
- Stop, Breathe & Think – This app lets you perform an emotional check-in before “prescribing” the best meditation exercises for you. Most exercises are less than 10 minutes. A few minutes in the morning, at bedtime or right before you pick up the kids after work can help you feel centered and relaxed all day long. Bonus: there are kid-friendly meditations too!
- Shine – Are you ever too hard on yourself? Are you filled with shoulda coulda woulda syndrome? Shine is your daily “I got this.” On weekday mornings they send a motivational text and they help you put self-compassion into practice. It was even featured as “Best of 2018” by the App Store.
- Relax Melodies – This is one of my 11-year-old son’s favorites. Sometimes sounds can help calm his mood and there are so many sounds to choose from that he often spends time clicking around like it’s a game. Be careful with this one though, the right sound will put you insomniacs out there right to sleep.
- ToDon’t – Everyone has a barely-used productivity app to help stay organized, but what about things you don’t want to do? If you want to be happier and less anxious, add the tasks you’re procrastinating on and watch your productivity soar. It’s tongue-in-cheek but sometimes reverse psychology works like a charm.
- Alchomy – Alright. OK. I know. Most of these apps are about meditation, relaxation and productivity. But sometimes, self-care is knowing how to mix the perfect drink and find a great place to unwind. This app was created by two black women who enjoy grown ‘n sexy beverages and the geniuses who make them. Get your drink on!
As a bonus, I’d like to offer a shout out to The Honest Guys on Youtube. I’ve never made it to the end of one of their sleep videos because I’m sound asleep minutes in.
What are some of your go-to mobile apps for self-care? Have you used any of these? Share your favorites and help another sister realize her true self.