Loving your career and flexible schedule doesn’t mean you don’t have rough days or feel life stress like everyone else. It also comes with the extra stress of an inconsistent paycheck. Your basics are covered by your laptop lifestyle but there isn’t much wiggle room in the budget for extras. You need regular restorative niches and great self-care on budget.
While you would love to take off with your cousin on an amazing weekend yoga retreat it’s just not in the cards right now. That doesn’t mean you can’t set aside space for yourself. There are plenty of great self-care on a budget practices to try, some of which don’t cost anything or require you to take a whole weekend off. Here’s my list of ways to give yourself some space to breath and recharge your batteries.
Secrets to self-care on a budget
Find your oasis at the public library. I love library day! I borrowed this idea from a client who would take advantage the time at the library while her son attended a home school group at the public library. She might read or just sit quietly with her thoughts. I envied her library days so much that I decided I had to try it for myself. Wednesdays and Fridays seem to work well for this but it depends on your library. Find a comfortable chair, bring a beverage (allowed by most libraries but check yours), pick a selection of magazine and turn off your phone. This hour or two of no distractions or expectations can make a big difference if done regularly. You can also grab a new book on the way out to enjoy at home.
Where is your local massage therapy school? Massage therapists need practice hours to graduate their program. Therefore, most massage therapy schools offer discounted massages to the public by students with a good base of knowledge who just need the hands-on time. You can usually ask for specific types of massage, like deep tissues or aromatherapy.
Community yoga classes may be crowded but they are still great. According to yoga philosophy and the sutra of generosity, Astheya, prosperity comes from giving This dedication to living yoga off the mat means many teachers offer community classes that are “pay what you can”. Many yoga studios will have at least one community class on their schedule or you can find them offered in parks or other public spots. If you need the class when times are tight and can’t pay, that’s ok too. It’s about giving more than you receive. Just try to honor that spirit by paying it forward in another way.
When you give you often get abundance in return. Speaking of generosity, volunteering can actually be a good form of self-care. If you’re an animal lover, volunteer to walk the dogs at a shelter. If you love little kids, volunteer to go read with them at a local school once a week. Join Girls on the Run as a running buddy. The joy of others will help lift you back up, I promise.
Wet fingernails mean you can’t do anything for hours. One of my personal favorite treats is to turn on a great audio book and give myself a manicure. You probably have most of the stuff you need to do an at-home mani but a new bottle of nail polish is much less expensive than going to get a manicure. You can YouTube tips and get your audio book free from the library. May I recommend “How To Be A Woman” by Catlin Moran or “11/22/63” by Stephen King?
If none of these options sound right to you, I suggest making a list of 20 things that make you happy. The rule is only five can be with other people, the rest need to be solo activities. From that list you can find your own great self-care on a budget ideas. If you happen to have a little wiggle room from a sudden bonus assignment or careful saving, you might consider a day retreat. I’m hosting my Build Your Foundation Fitness Retreat at Sangha Studio on September 29 and I would love to see you there. Find all the details HERE.