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We all tend to put others first whether it be our spouse, kids, friends, parents. We feel obligated to be a caretaker. Taking care of yourself, though, is vital for your well-being and health. Self-care is far from selfish and self-indulgent.

If you don’t care for yourself properly, your body will suffer. Chronic stress weakens the immune system, making us more susceptible and vulnerable to weight gain, colds, sleep issues, high blood pressure, cardiac issues and more. And if you just drown your sorrows in a Netflix and junk food binge, you may end up suffering from obesity, disease, diabetes and unhappiness. “Stress is sneaky,” says Paul Hokemeyer, Ph.D., an internationally renowned clinical and consulting psychotherapist. “It tells us to do things that feel good in the short term. But in the longer term, they add to the intensity of our emotions and diminish our health and well-being. Losing yourself in The House of Cards will certainly make your challenges seem small. But it will also ramp up your emotions and leave you feeling depleted or hyper activated.”

Here are some self-care tactics that you can use to help ease anxiety in your daily life.

Get off social media
You may scroll through Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and other social arenas to unwind. But being plugged in constantly makes you prone to stressing out about anxiety-inducing events. Hearing about a friend dealing with a death or reading about war in a foreign country can make you feel depressed and lonely. And seeing someone drinking a pina colada on a tropical beach while you’re stuck in your cubicle is enough to upset anyone. “Social media is hard on our bodies,” says Deborah Serani, Ph.D., a psychologist in New York, a professor at Adelphi University, and author of Living with Depression: Why Biology and Biography Matter Along the Path to Hope and Healing. “Neck, back, shoulder and finger pain are associated with excessive media use. The blue light from electronic media interferes with our circadian rhythm, making it hard to sleep.” Yes, disconnecting can be tough. But, so can constantly scanning your feeds. “If you find your stomach in a knot after scrolling through posts or compulsively scrolling for a hit of voyeuristic pleasure, shut it down and put boundaries around your use,” says Dr. Hokemeyer. “It’s ok to check every other day, once a week or not at all. You’re not missing anything of value by limiting your use or getting off completely.”

Source : HealthyWomen

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