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Beating Burnout: 5 Ways to Commemorate International Self-Care Day

July 24, 2023
Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Burnout is a serious issue in Egypt, both among adults and students. According to a 2017 study of Egyptian teachers, 100 percent experienced occupational stress.

Either due to such excessive stress or even workaholism, people often neglect to take care of themselves. As such, it is vital that we make time away from work to do so — and when better than on International Self-Care Day?

International Self-Care Day was established by the UK-based International Self-Care Foundation (ISF) in 2011. It was created to raise awareness about self-care and self-care intervention globally, and is observed annually every 24 July.

Pace Hospitals defines self-care as “actively protecting one’s happiness and well-being, especially during times of stress.” So, to commemorate International Self-Care Day 2023, here are a few tips to maintain your wellbeing.

Get Up and Get Moving

The National Institute of Mental Health recommends exercise as a means of self-care. That doesn’t mean religiously going to the gym or even taking part in rigorous at-home workout routines; it can be something as simple as walking for thirty minutes a day.

Besides providing a change of scenery and allowing you to unplug, exercise has many positive health effects, including the benefit to your mood. It can even be done with friends, turning the walk into a pleasant social occasion.

Prioritize Sleep

While this may seem like a fairly obvious self-care tip, over 40 percent of people in the Middle East suffer from sleep disorders, Dr. Rasha Mahmoud, head of the pulmonology and sleep unit at the Almana Group of Hospitals in Saudi Arabia, tells Arab News.

Additionally, a 2017 study by Bupa Cromwell Hospital declared that Egyptians, specifically, need more sleep, citing detrimental sleeping habits.

The Center for Disease Control recommends that teenagers get 8 to 10 hours of sleep, while adults need 7 or more per night. Sleeping well has many benefits, including: maintaining or losing weight, increasing concentration and productivity, supporting your immune system, and improving mood.

Do Something You Enjoy Every Day

In the daily hustle and bustle of work or studies, it is easy to classify the things you enjoy as a waste of time. However, it is often to your benefit to take some time every day to do something you love.

It can be anything from practicing a creative hobby such as painting or dancing, to simply going out for coffee with your friends — and it does not have to be the same activity every day. As long as it is a change of pace you enjoy, anything is an option.

Allowing yourself a small daily indulgence is not only a form of self-care, but also lessens stress, deters low moods, and combats depression.

Embrace Positivity

While toxic positivity tends to make matters worse by denying the glaring problems of life, a realistic but optimistic outlook is good for maintaining a positive state of mind.

Especially with all the stresses of modern Egyptian life, from safety concerns to the economy, staying positive can be difficult. However, managing to do so has a lot of benefits.

According to Mayo Clinic, positive thinking can result in lower levels of distress, greater resistance to illness, and increased coping skills in times of stress. Embracing positivity is self-care for your mind and can take the form of looking on the bright side of a situation or refusing to engage in negative self-talk.

Keep a Routine

Whether it is a skincare routine, an exercise routine, or even just a daily schedule, maintaining an enjoyable routine is a boon for your mental health as well as a viable self-care option.

Not only does it give you the freedom to engage in an activity of your choice that may have its own separate health benefits, it also offers a sense of control in an otherwise tumultuous life.

No matter what routine you pick, there are a few universal benefits to keeping one, such as reduced anxiety and increased productivity.

Whichever of these tips you choose to act on, be sure to set aside time for yourself on this International Day of Self-Care.

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