Paleo Top Ten Tips on How to Self Care 

As we say throughout this site, Paleo isn't just a diet, it's a lifestyle. Our Top Ten Tips on How to Self Care shows you easy, actionable steps that you can take everyday to look after yourself better whilst following a primal life.

Sometimes we need reminders of simple things we can do to do to reset how we care for ourselves. That is what this page is here to do. We hope you find it useful.

By choosing to eat a primal style of  diet, you are already one step ahead of the game when it comes to self care, but even so, it can be so easy to slip into bad habits and neglect yourself, and pretend that you're living a healthy life just because you're 'paleo'.

top ten tips how to self care tip from

Our cavemen and women ancestors would have lived in such a way that they would naturally have done many of the tips we'll be sharing in this article, although you will have to allow a little license!

Why Do We Need Self Care Tips?

There are lots of reasons why we need self care tips, below are a few examples, do any of them sound familiar to you?

top ten tips how to self care uncared for self
  • We've never been taught how to self care so have no idea where to start!
  • We all live such busy lives nowadays that it can be too easy to get sucked into a daily routine that just doesn't make room for self care and nourishment. 
  • It can feel self indulgent and selfish to take care of ourselves when we have other people relying on us. 
  • We think self care has to be complicated and expensive so we put it off for another day.

Paleo friendly top ten tips on how to self care

In his book 'Primal Connection' Mark Sissons offers 10 tips for successful hunter gatherers. It's a great list, and we have a copy of it pinned up in our kitchen, but too often it goes unnoticed.

Many of the ideas are big picture items for instance; 'create a tribe'. Great advice, but not something you can do RIGHT NOW. However, one of the most important suggestions is  to 'Be Selfish'. Something many of us, particularly parents, find incredibly hard to do - we feel we have to give our everything to everyone else, and then wonder why we get to the end of the week feeling like we've been hit by a train!

Tired of finding nebulous ideas for looking after yourself? Creatively Paleo offers you their Top Ten Tips on How to Self Care - actionable steps to feeling better today

It may be a clich√©, but do you remember the parable of the oxygen mask? In order to help others in an emergency situation in an aircraft, you are instructed that you MUST put your own oxygen mask on first, otherwise you will be no use to anyone. You matter, and your ability to care well for your friends and family depends upon you having a full tank. So, no matter how counter-intuitive it might feel to you, GET SELFISH you deserve as much care and attention as you lavish on everyone else.

With that in mind, here are our paleo friendly top ten tips on how to really look after yourself. 10 self care tips that that you can (probably) do RIGHT NOW! Print it out and keep it in your purse or wallet for when you need a reminder.

Printable Self Care Chart top ten tips on how to self care

Here is our top ten list of self care tips  in a handy little self care chart format - print it out and pop it in your journal, purse or self care kit.

We explain why we included each item below the charts.

Right click and open the image in a new tab to get a larger version to print.

top ten tips on how to self care printable self care chart
top ten tips on how to self care a  printable self care chart

Paleo Friendly Top Tips on How to Self Care 

We walk you through each of our top ten tips, the reasoning behind them and how you can implement them with easy action steps. Find a printable copy of our self care worksheet here.

1. Breathe

Breathing is something we all do, largely without thinking about it (unless you're unfortunate enough to have breathing difficulties). But, most of us don't really breathe properly. There is a good reason why most relaxation modalities tell you to breathe deeply in and out, because it works!

When you feel yourself becoming stressed, your first easy action step is:

  • close your eyes and breathe slowly and deeply in to the count of 5 
  • release your breathe to the count of 5
  • repeat 4 or 5 times

Assess how you feel after that and if you still feel stressed try it again or move onto number 2.

2.  Move

No you don't have to move house, these are quick steps you can do now remember! Our paleo ancestors would have had strong bodies as a result of the exercise that was part of their every day lives, so  give some thought about getting into the habit of making some caveman moves. Right now though ... 

Your next easy action steps are:

  • Give yourself a shake, jiggle your shoulders, move your legs and arms about to get some blood flowing.
  • Get up and walk around, if you're stuck in an office, go for a walk to the toilet. If you're able to get outside for a walk in the fresh air even better.
  • Spend 5 minutes jumping on a rebounder to your favourite happy song, or if you don't have a rebounder break out in a sweat by making some shapes in your kitchen!

Assess how you feel, then go and do number 3.

3.  Nourish

The dictionary says that to nourish means to "provide with the food or other substances necessary for growth, health and good condition". All of these top ten tips on how to self care are acts of nourishment, but in this instance we mean food and drink.

Your next easy action step is:

  • Make yourself a cup of your favourite paleo friendly brew. A relaxing herbal tea would be advised over a cup of coffee, but if it's coffee you need make it a good one.
  • Find a comfortable, quiet spot and savour the feel of the cup, the warmth and the aroma before taking a sip and enjoying the flavours dancing across your taste buds.
  • If you're feeling hungry, grab yourself a healthy snack - there are lots of great grab and go snacks now that are suitable for anyone following the paleo diet, or you could keep a container of trail mix or beef jerky in your portable self care kit.

New research suggests that an apple a day really does keep the (statin pimping) doctor away

4. Laugh

Gotta be honest, absolutely no idea what our Paleo ancestors would have found funny, maybe you've got some ideas about that? Drop us a tweet or facebook message or use the contact us box, we'd love to share a giggle with you.

'Laughter is the best medicine' so says the old saying, and once more it seems that these things have more than a grain of truth in them. Laughing is known to provide a variety of health benefits from lowering stress hormones to giving your diaphragm, shoulders and abs a workout! So getting your laughing gear on for your next...

 easy action steps:

  • Gather together your favourite comedy dvds & enjoy an afternoon (or evening) of wall to wall belly laughs.
  • Only got a few minutes? Find clips of your top 5 funniest film or tv moments on Youtube and watch them on your phone or tablet.
  • Read a few paragraphs of a comedy or joke book - you can usually find free ones on Kindle.
  • Do something daft! Have a Miranda moment and enjoy a laugh at your own expense. We take ourselves far too seriously, time to loosen up and be more child like, just for a little while. You could always take your paleo lifestyle to the extreme and dress up like a caveperson...

5. Notice

Our Paleo ancestors had no choice but to be mindful, it would have been a matter of life and death for them. We don't have the same imperative now that we aren't watching out for sabre toothed tigers and the like, but, without wishing to sound overly dramatic, our lives are becoming  endangered due to our lack of notice.

When you bring your focus onto what you are experiencing in the moment, you can literally transform your life. Mindfulness is a technique that is increasingly being encouraged by conventional medicine to help relieve depression, pain and even physical illness.

A course in mindfulness is a very good idea but in the mean time you can take just a couple of minutes out of your day to slow down and notice what is really going on around you.

here are your next easy action steps:

  • Take a good long breath in and, as you do so, notice what aromas you can detect, are they pleasant? Do they evoke any memories? 
  • Breathe out and, as you do so, notice how you feel - do you have any particular sensations anywhere in your body? 
  • Close your eyes, and listen. What sounds do you hear? Listen carefully and see if there are any particular sounds that are pleasing to your ear.
  • Run your hand along the surfaces around you and notice how they feel - explore different textures, see if there are any you prefer more than others.
  • Look around you, look deeply. Notice the small details that you would ordinarily skim over - look at the texture of the clothes you are wearing, see if you notice any little creatures on near by plants. Look for signs of the changing seasons.
  • When you have a drink or eat that delicious paleo storm you cooked up in the kitchen, savour each mouthful. Notice the movement of the of food or drink as it makes its way into your mouth, around you tongue and teeth and down your throat. Get a really good sense of the flavours and textures you are experiencing. You'll enjoy your meal times a whole lot more if you do this regularly.

6. Create

All human beings are innately creative. You have only to  look at the works of art created on cave walls by our Paleo ancestors, to see how far back human creativity goes.

If you don't consider yourself to be an artist you might think that you're not creative, but you would be wrong!

Creativity is the act of making something out of nothing, or out of a collection of other things. Every time you cook, you're being creative. When you arrange your home, you're being creative, if you are a technical whizz at coding, yep, you're being creative! 

There is a great sense of accomplishment when we create. The outcome is part of that, but the process is almost more important. 

Here then are some easy action steps:

  • Take 5 minutes to yourself to think about what creative acts give you the most pleasure.
  • Make a date with yourself (mark it in your diary if you have to) to spend some time taking part in your favourite creative activity.
  • One really quick, easy, and practically free way to get creative, is to use the camera on your phone or tablet. Take a quick snap of an everyday object and manipulate it in one of the many free photo apps available. Why not make it a 365 project? 
  • Grab some coloured pens or pencils and get colouring in or doodling. Doodling is now recognised as a hugely important part of many learning styles. I have seen friends kick anti depressants into touch once they took up Zentangling, which is a very creative mindfulness technique. You don't need anything other than a pen and a piece of paper to start.
  • Crafts such as knitting and crochet are meditative creative acts that are fast becoming popular in all walks of life. You can pick them up as and when you feel like it. Why not mimic your paleo ancestors and create your own garments? Scarves are a quick and easy introduction for the beginner.
  • Have a go at making some body care products such as our easy lip balm.

7. Disconnect

It's stating the obvious to say that our paleo ancestors didn't have to worry about this particular modern phenomena, and none of us would really want to go back to the days before the internet, would we?

But, the speed of the evolution of modern technology far surpasses the evolution of our bodies. You know this, right, because you've discovered that eating more like our ancestors from 10,000+ years ago has impacted on your general health and well being, yes? Ok. 

So... you know that our 24/7 plugged in lifestyle is negatively impacting our health and well being, right?

Pretty much all of us relies on modern technology to one degree or another, and we certainly would not want to lose the amazing opportunities that it affords us, but things are getting out of hand and it's way past time to reclaim a little balance.

Here then are your easy action steps:

  • When you go to the toilet, leave your phone or tablet behind! Apart from anything else, think about the hygiene aspect! (Guilty as charged)
  • Please, please, please, put your phone in your bag or pocket when you're walking down the street and ESPECIALLY when you're crossing the road! 
  • When you eat or drink, leave the phone or tablet on the side. Savour the sensations remember?
  • Have a disconnected day once a week, be fully present to the people you share your life with for one day a week and you will undoubtedly reap the rewards of increased connection. Woah, connection through disconnection, deep huh?

8. Appreciate

A simple appreciation for the good things in life is a fast ticket to inner peace and happiness.

Living a paleo lifestyle may mean that you already lead a life that affords you an appreciation for the food you eat and the earth and people who supply it. Even so, we live in a fast paced 21st century world, where our hectic lives can mean that the appreciation for the small things is not built in to our daily lives.

A daily gratitude practice is well worth cultivating, it can be truly life changing, and is such a simple yet deeply profound thing to do.

Here then are some simple easy action steps:

  • Take 5 minutes to sit quietly and contemplate 3 things that you really appreciate and are grateful for. Do this every night just before you go to sleep and you will really start to notice a difference in how you feel.
  • Start a gratitude journal. You can buy dedicated journals (this is the one I use and have gifted to several friends) that include prompts, but you could use any notebook you happen to have already. Using a special pen that you enjoy the look and feel of can make this practice even more mindful, but it isn't necessary to achieve great results.
  • Start a 'good things' jar - take a glass jar and decorate it (creativity!) then whenever something good happens write it down on a piece of paper and drop it into your jar. Watch the jar fill up with good things and at the end of the month or year, enjoy going through them all and remembering the good times with a smile.

9. Soak

I like to picture our paleo ancestors enjoying a good old soak in a local watering hole - just imagine how refreshing that would have been, no chemical **** storms for them! Just pure, unadulterated water. Bliss!

Taking a soak in a warm bath is one of the most relaxing ways to end the day, and sets you up really well for a good night's sleep.

Nowadays we think of a luxurious bath as being full of sweet smelling  bubbles, just like the lady opposite is enjoying. However, the vast majority of bath products aren't really terribly good for us. 

Our skin is our biggest organ and upwards of 60% of what you put on it, or soak it in, is absorbed directed into the blood stream, so it's crucial that you are feeding your skin healthy ingredients.

Here then are our easy action steps:

  • Replace those non paleo lotions and potions with a cup of epsom salts and enjoy a 30 minute soak before bed 2 or 3 times a week. You will sleep better and your skin will be softer than you've ever known it!
  • If you want to enjoy a soak every night, replace the epsom salts for some himalayan pink salt and enjoy as long as you like relaxing in the warm water.
  • Start creating an essential oil collection - choose a variety scents that will appeal to different moods. Lavender is a classic for relaxing and helping you to sleep, sandalwood and rose are lovely romantic scents, and citrus aromas like may chang are invigorating, perfect if you want to start your day with a soak in the tub.
  • Enjoy a spa at home feel by treating yourself to a luxurious bath robe, scented candles and big fluffy towels. Nothing will make you feel more special, guaranteed!

10. Sleep

This modern life we live has really messed with our body clocks. 

Our ancestors (from only a couple of centuries ago right back to the paleo era) lived by the sun; rising at dawn and retiring with the approaching dark. 

With the advent of electric light, marvellous invention that it was, our systems have got completely out of whack, and our bodies are paying for a 24/7 lifestyle.

Sleep is one of the greatest gifts you can offer yourself - it helps our cells to repair, gives us respite from the day's worries and ultimately resets us ready to face another day. 

Your easy actions steps:

  • If you find it difficult to sleep, try having a soak in epsom salts, or try a magnesium supplement - Dr Eades reckons this is better than any sleeping tablet - or if you don't like tablets try the spray. Our paleo ancestors received a much higher degree of magnesium through their diet than we do today, and some doctors suspect that the lack of this essential mineral could be the cause of the increased cases of depression.
  • Our bodies, more particularly our pineal glands which regulate our body clock, or circadian rhythms, need dark. Unfortunately, thanks to the proliferation of street lighting, most of us never experience true darkness and this affects the quality of our sleep and overall health. Black out blinds and curtains are an excellent idea to create a dark bedroom, but a quick and easy solution is a sleep mask.
  • Our family is a big fan of the Kelly Howell brain sync series, even the teenagers will put on her deep sleep meditation if they are having difficulties dropping off. We first started using the brain sync programmes almost 7 years ago when Dad was diagnosed with cancer, one of the programmes is actually recommended by the American Cancer Society, it really helped him to deal with some of the dark thoughts around his diagnosis. If standard meditation type things don't work for you (they don't for us) then give these a try and see how you get on.
  • Limit your caffeine intake! Cut it out altogether by replacing your coffee or tea with herbal teas, kombucha, watser or a coffee alternative like roasted dandelion or chicory, or if you can't cut it out completely, don't drink caffeine after lunch.
  • Try using a day light alarm clock that mimics the rising of the sun, complete with natural sounds, for a more gentle and natural morning call - a great way to utilise modern technology for a more paleo friendly start to the day!

There you have it, a pretty comprehensive guide on how to self care in a paleo friendly way! We hope you've found this guide useful, and don't forget to print out a copy of our self care chart as a quick and easy reminder of these top ten tips on how to self care. If you liked this article, why not share it with your friends?

top ten tips on how to self care the paleo friendly printable self care chart
top ten tips on how to self care the paleo friendly printable self care chart

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if you enjoyed our paleo top ten tips on how to self care why not try our paleo slow cooker recipes you'll get longer to soak if you're tea is ready when you get home..