Single mom here! That means everything I do is on a budget. Travel, shopping, dining, all of it. When it comes to loving myself and nurturing my mind and body, self-care on a budget is where it’s at.
With the rise of mental health issues among women and strained finances, there is an increased interest in self-care on a budget. The problem is that many women spend so much time focusing on others that their own needs and mental health take a back seat until it’s too late.
Just because you’re on a budget doesn’t mean you can’t take care of yourself. While you may not be buying Louis Vuitton bags and shoes and get daily facials at a luxurious spa, there are simple things you can do daily that will improve your mental health and contribute to your self-care needs.
Ideas for Self-care On a Budget
Take an E-Course
My first idea for self-care on a budget is to learn something new. This can help you expand your hobbies, find self-fulfillment, and even gain skills for your career. Learn anything from music to art to a foreign language to a new software program all online and all in your own time.
There are many affordable places to find e-courses. Your local library might offer options. You can find affordable options on LinkedIn Learning and on Udemy and other online course marketplaces.
Taking the time to learn something new can help challenge you and show you that you can do hard things. No one can take this sense of satisfaction from you.
Enjoy Your Favorites at Home
My favorite and most executed self-care on a budget tip is to do all the things you love at home. Going to restaurants and coffee shops all the time can cost you big money. But staying away from them all the time for budgetary reasons can feel restrictive and depressing.
The cool thing is that there are plenty of ways to create your favorite cold brew coffee drinks and restaurant recipes in your kitchen. Enjoying delicious food and drinks, even from home can make life feel more relaxed.
Everyone has their favorite restaurant dish and preparing them at home can add little bits of joy when your budget is a concern.
Eat Nutritious Foods
Eating healthy may not always feel like self-care when all you want are donuts and cookies. But, eating nutritious food helps you feel more energetic and focused than eating unhealthy delights. And it’s also a great way to practice self-care on a budget.
It’s important to focus on eating a hearty, healthy breakfast, enjoying fruits and vegetables throughout the day, and focusing on your favorite nutrient-dense foods. When you do this most of the time, you’ll experience more energy, better gut health, and improved mental health.
Lounging on the couch is good sometimes but spending all your time sedentary isn’t good for your physical or mental health. Staying active helps improve your cardiovascular health, your immune health, and mood.
When you need self-care on a budget, staying active is it. You don’t need to get a gym membership or fancy equipment. Just putting a pair of Saturday shoes on and going for a walk is a perfect way to stay active and give yourself the time and care you need.
Spend Time With Friends
Relationships are an important part of self-care. Letting go of toxic relationships and inviting in healthy, positive relationships can make a huge difference in your life. And it’s budget-friendly because it’s free!
Friendships provide encouragement, love, and so much more. While you could go to dinner, sometimes just a simple coffee, game night, or trip to the grocery store is enough for you to build that connection with a trusted friend.
Friends lend an ear when we are frustrated or sad. They provide a sounding board when we need perspective. They are there for us when troubles come, and they can help us through tough times.
Friends give us someone to laugh with and cry with and love us no matter what. The beauty of a good friend is that even when you move away, the best ones you can always call even if it’s been months since you last spoke to each other.
Practice Your Religion
People who practice their religious beliefs experience less stress than those who don’t. Sometimes self-care involves connecting to a higher power through prayer, rituals, and daily devotion.
Whether you practice yoga as a religion, you have Christian beliefs, Jewish faith, or one of many other religions, it’s important to take time daily to commit yourself to your personal faith.
Additionally, setting daily intentions, regardless of your beliefs, is free. This makes for yet another self-care on a budget tip!
Do Something You Enjoy at Least Once a Week
Whether you love to play the piano, enjoy reading the latest novels, love to garden, or have a favorite show you want to watch, it’s important to prioritize time to do it each week. While some weeks this may not happen, setting aside time for yourself to do something you love and enjoy is a simple self-care habit.
Self-care is about prioritizing you sometimes. While caring for kids, family, spouses, work, and so much more, it’s easy to forget that you are a whole person with likes and dislikes and you need time to do them.
You don’t have to neglect yourself just because money is tight. Self-care on a budget is possible with the above-mentioned tips.