Fred Astaire Dance Studios is reminding you to celebrate Self-Care Awareness Month in September by taking a break from your normal routine each week to have fun, get fit, and start a new hobby on the dance floor.
The National Institute of Mental Health defines self-care as the practice of “taking the time to do things that help you live well and improve both your physical health and mental health.” While self-care is not meant to replace health services, it is another tool to help create good mental health. The hectic pace of daily life often makes people put self-care on the back burner. Parents get absorbed juggling the pressures of work, child care, and afterschool activities. Responsibilities for aging relatives, grandchildren, and current events often prevent people from taking time to de-stress and take a deep breath.
Self-Care Awareness Month was likely started in 2017 by Evolve to Live, a non-profit educational outreach organization dedicated to promoting the benefits of self-care as a component of preventative health medicine. Evolve to Live’s mission is to encourage people to take time to focus on their own mental and emotional health to give them the energy they need to better serve their families, employers, and communities.
Health Benefits of Self-Care
While focusing on self-care is all the rage in women’s magazines and on social media, it’s actually an important tool to keep in your mental and physical health arsenal. Here are some of the health benefits of taking time to focus on self-care.
- Self-care can help empower people to take charge of their well-being and have positive mental health outcomes.
- Helps De-Stress. Self-care helps mitigate stress, which is beneficial for both the body and mind. Participating in self-care can help trigger the body’s relaxation response, which can reduce stress. High stress levels can be damaging to your mental health and physical health.
- Fuels Physical Health. Self-care can improve physical health and many people make regular exercise part of their self-care routine. Taking time to sweat a little and get the heart rate up can improve cardiovascular fitness. It can also help relieve stress. Periods of extended stress can cause tension headaches or migraines, and increase the risk of heart attack, stroke, and hypertension, according to WebMD.
- Improves Sleep. Taking time to practice self-care can help you sleep better. If you are one of those people who tosses and turns at night, taking time to unwind before climbing into bed can make a difference in the quality of your sleep. Sleep gives your body time to recharge, according to the Sleep Foundation. A good night’s rest improves concentration, helps the body fight off disease, bolsters memory, and puts you in the right frame of mind to tackle your day.
How to Practice Self-Care
The practice of self-care varies from person to person. Many people practice meditation or yoga to focus their breathing. Others turn to nature to find solace by hiking, taking the boat out to catch fish, or birdwatching. Some people make daily exercise part of their self-care routine, while others might schedule a night out with friends, or spend an hour reading a good book.
If time is of the essence, take a look at this 15-minute meditation hosted by Calm, a provider of an online self-care app with more than 1.5 million users.
Fred Astaire Dance Studios believes dancing is a balm for both the body and soul. Scheduling a dance lesson provides an outlet to de-stress, get active, and have fun. We offer individual and group lessons at our dance studios taught by trained instructors who will help you learn new moves and provide a place for you to focus on yourself. Check out these dancers practicing self-care on the dance floor at a Fred Astaire Dance Studios location in Texas.
If you are ready to focus on YOU this month, contact your local Fred Astaire Dance Studio location and schedule a dance lesson to make self-care part of your weekly routine.