Join Defence Team Members to Celebrate International Self-Care Day
July 24, 2020 – Defence Stories
On July 24, the Defence Team is proud to recognize International Self-Care Day. As we navigate these challenging times together, there is no better time to prioritize personal well-being.
According to the World Health Organization, “Self-care is the ability of individuals and communities to promote, maintain health, and prevent disease” and is a broad concept that encompasses “hygiene, nutrition, lifestyle, environmental, and socio-economic factors.”
Although the thought of self-care may conjure visions of spa days, it actually comes in many different forms. It is important to prioritize your well-being by checking-in with yourself, your loved ones, and your colleagues.
Self-care is an integral part of our lives and has many benefits to both our psychological and physical health. Prioritizing self-care when faced with competing and stressful responsibilities and commitments can seem daunting.
How does one find the time and rationale to care for oneself? Read below to learn some tips on how you can incorporate self-care into your daily routine:
- It starts with self-awareness. A good tool, to begin with, is the Mental Health Continuum. It takes a conscious effort to keep yourself mentally healthy and to remain in the “Healthy” or “Green” zone. You can access this Web page to find out where you are on the continuum.
- Take small steps. Take small actions every day that have long-lasting impacts on your mental and physical well-being. For example, if your goal is to start running, why not start with a three-minute run, then work up to five, or 15 – whatever your schedule allows and whatever activity you enjoy!
- Recognize when to seek professional help. At times, self-care may even mean reaching out for support and advice. Defence Team members can get help through:
- The Health Canada - Employee Assistance Services by calling 1-800-268-7708 (24/7/365) | 1-800-567-5803 (TTY - for people with a hearing impairment).
- The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members and their families can contact the Canadian Forces Member Assistance Program at 1-800-268-7708 | 1-800-567-5803 (TTY).
- Practice self-compassion. Don’t be hard on yourself if you did not practice self-care today! Studies have shown that having self-compassion has a long-lasting effect on your habits, whether it be exercise, properly nourishing your body, better sleep, and/or better stress management.
- Increase your mental health knowledge. LifeSpeak is a health and wellness-focused digital platform available to all Defence Team members. LifeSpeak contains over 1,000 videos and other resources to help build better mental health and develop a resilient mindset.
Self-care is not a one-size-fits all endeavour. Do what is best for your needs and situation! The rewards for you, your family, and your team are long-lasting and impactful.
Remember you are not alone in this!
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