Prioritizing wellbeing doesn't have to mean a trip to an expensive spa or investing in a pricey fitness subscription. There are many other ways to practice self-care, especially when everyone should be staying at home. With the coronavirus pandemic going on in a big way, this is both a) a frustrating time for everyone who wants to go exploring, and b) weirdly, the perfect time to settle in with some self-care on a budget. Here are some self-care ideas that won’t cost a ton of money and can be done at home—or wherever social distancing is happening.
Play Free Yoga Videos on YouTube
Right now, fitness buffs are getting so creative about exercising alone, together. There’s a wealth of free exercise routines on Instagram, thanks to people recording workouts on their Stories. And there’s cheap stuff out there too, with instructors conducting Zoom classes for a fraction of the normal cost.
But the biggest vault of free stuff will be YouTube, forever and always. And yoga’s the perfect activity, whether someone wants to feel less out of shape or just chill out for a sec. Search “free yoga” and thousands of videos for every type and skill level come up (a ton of stuff for beginners—phew). Not only that, but instructors have entire video series that anyone can take, just like regular classes. Pack up a SuperBreak backpack with gear, head out to your yard or a secluded green space, plug in headphones, and go.
Take Up Meditation with a Smartphone App
Not on the meditation train yet? Now’s the perfect time to see what all the fuss is about. Meditation is insanely popular for a reason: It can be done from anywhere and a session can be as short as a few minutes. It’s also an effective way to drown out the noise (literal and figurative), cut down on anxiety, and touch base with a little inner calm before getting back to real life. The more stressful the moment, the more meditation helps. To get started, check out the Insight Timer app (yup, the basic version is free) and the Chel Hamilton Meditation Minis podcast. You’ll be feeling zen in no time.
DIY the Perfect At-Home Spa Day
Instead of packing for that (probably delayed) festival, get supplies for a spa day from home. Drug store face masks, bubble baths, exfoliating body scrubs, bath bombs, massage oils, and nail polishes are cheap, fun, and totally customizable for everyone’s beauty needs. Relaxation doesn’t just have to be for the girls, either: Almost everyone can appreciate a new soap, shampoo, or scrub brush. Bonus: Everything fits comfortably into an Accessory Pouch to store away for the perfect relaxing moment (or just a random stressful weeknight—it’s great whenever!).
Learn Something New That’s Also Exciting
This might not sound fun—but give it a second. Back to the glories of YouTube: There are so many free classes and videos that teach creative, enjoyable subjects. Discover Quentin Tarantino’s writing process and learn how to write dialogue. Hone those photography and video editing skills. Learn how to practice outdoor ethics for that next big trip, exploring the world responsibly without damaging the environment.
Now that your Big Student backpack isn’t totally stuffed full of books and a laptop, fill it instead with empty notepads, fun reading, a tablet, headphones, and anything else that makes the process more enjoyable. Then head off to a quiet, secluded space to dive deep into that passion project. This is the perfect time to do it.
These are just a few of the many, many ways that self-care can be just as effective at home as outside. The sky’s the limit—so take time for yourself right now. Let us know what’s helping you stay calm on social media!
By Katherine J. Igoe