By: Rena Munster

Self-care is more than just taking an Epsom salt bath and lighting candles around my home...

It's taking time out of a hectic schedule to tend to my mind, body and spirit.

It’s about practicing saying no to things that don’t serve me and saying yes to experiences and relationships that fill me up.

But, most importantly, it is about finding space to be empathetic and gentle to myself and not letting negative self-talk take me down. Here is a list of some of my weekly practices of self-care:

Meditation: Sleep is such a good way to regenerate and restore after a long day. Sometimes it can be hard to get to sleep when future tasks, worries and what-ifs are swirling through my head. I like to use a meditation app (Insight Timer is my personal favorite) to help clear my mind and promote good sleep.

Professional support: Weekly appointments with my acupuncturist and my therapist give me a safe and nonjudgmental space to work on my emotional wellbeing. Life with a chronic illness can be painful and lonely at times. Having a strong professional support system makes the ride of life a lot less bumpy.

Swimming: I feel strong and powerful when I am swimming laps and blasting pick-me-up music on my underwater iPod. Getting to the gym on a regular basis is one way I feel like I am taking control over my health and well being.

Medication: Taking my medications on time and making all my doctors appointments is another way that I am taking the driver seat of my health. It’s a small daily act that reaffirms my commitment to take care of myself. Whether it is working or not on a physical level I can still tell myself I am doing the best I can do tend to my health.

Cooking: Food is medicine. I am very aware of what I put into my body and do my best to cook meals (rather than eat out) that really nourish me. Committing to nightly dinners with my husband is another way to make sure I have quality time with him on a regular basis.

What do you do to tend to your well being?

Rena Münster