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Expat Tips: Take Care of Yourself

Do you find you’re always putting everyone else before yourself? We are often too busy making sure others have what they need that we forget to look after ourselves. However, self-care is important. It’s easy to become overwhelmed, especially in periods of transition . In these moments, it can help to put yourself first. Here are some tips to help you to start looking after yourself.

 

1. Eat Well

Eating well is one of the most important ways to look after yourself. In times of transition we can be so busy that we grab the quickest thing to eat, but it isn’t always the healthiest option. In order to work its best, our body needs the right nutrients. Firstly, don’t skip meals! In the mornings in particular, our body needs good food to get going and to set us up for the day. Of course, it is okay to have a treat every now and then. We cannot be too hard on ourselves!

2. Get Enough Sleep

The next thing to do is to get into a healthy sleeping pattern. We are constantly on the go, running between work and looking after the kids, and so our bodies need to be recharged. You should aim for about eight hours of sleep a night. This may take some time if you’re dealing with different time zones but if you persist, it can happen. Listen to your body! When it’s telling you it’s tired, don’t stay up late. Another thing to remember is that going to sleep early and waking up early means you can be more productive, and who doesn’t love the feeling of being productive? If you ensure that you get enough sleep each night, your body will thank you for it.

3. Exercise

Exercising daily can have many benefits, like reducing stress.  And let’s not forget those endorphins released when we exercise! Exercising doesn’t have to mean taking an hour every day to go to the gym. It could be as simple as walking to work or cycling instead of driving. If you’ve just moved abroad, it can be great to get out for a work out to clear your head amid all the commotion. Some people prefer to go to the gym before work or attend a dance class in the evening. It’s really up to you to find out what work’s best with your schedule and your body!

4. Do One Thing You Enjoy Each Day

This sounds like a tough one, but it’s actually pretty simple. It’s easy to get caught up in the same old routine, so why not do one thing each day that you really enjoy? It could be watching an episode of your favorite tv show, reading a book, or taking up a new hobby (this is great if you’ve just moved to a new place). Doing something you love will lead to a happier you, and that is exactly what we want.

5. Take Some “Me” Time

There’s no harm in taking a little extra time for yourself. It may be exercising or the one thing you enjoy each day. Closing yourself off from others for a short amount of time can be really beneficial to your wellbeing. If you are an introvert, you may even need this time alone to recharge yourself. Have a hot bubble bath, try out a new yoga class, or simply sit down with a cup of coffee! This is in no way selfish and after all your hard work, you definitely deserve it!

6. Praise Yourself

Finally, self-motivation is a great way to look after yourself. At the end of a long, hard day, remind yourself that you’re doing great. Take a look at the positives of the day — maybe you had a great lunch or spoke really well in a meeting. Give yourself a pat on the back, or even reward yourself with a treat. It could be something as small as a bar of chocolate on the way home from work. You work hard and you’re doing the best you can for everyone around you, so take these tips on board and start looking after yourself.

 

To see the rest of this ongoing video series with our resident expat expert Lauren, visit our Facebook page. There you can share your feedback with us or even ask for advice — we may just use your question as the starting point for the next video!



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Mireille Auffret

"Polynesia is very far away from my home country, but InterNations helped me and my entire family cope with the transition. "

Ivan Dlouhy

"A platform like InterNations makes life easier for the scattered expat community of Polynesia. "

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