When you’re struggling to make ends meet, spending money on self-care may seem like an indulgence you can’t afford. Fortunately, there are simple ways to boost your well-being that don’t cost a fortune. Here are four ideas to improve your physical and mental health without pinching your pocketbook.
- Start a Hobby With Fringe Benefits
Experts note that spending time on a hobby gives you a break from your stress-inducing routines, and you can pick up a new pastime on the cheap by taking community center classes or following online interest groups. Finding something you love to tinker with that ticks multiple wellness boxes broadens the benefits.
Gardening, for instance, engages you with nature, boosts strength and agility, burns calories, and reduces tension. Best of all, when you plant edible crops, you’ll earn back what little you invested in supplies by saving at the supermarket.
- Prepare Home-Cooked Meals
Growing your own fruits, vegetables, and herbs inspires you to put your bounty to good use by preparing healthy, home-cooked meals. Eating at home more often keeps meal costs down while eliminating the excess fats and additives found in commercially prepared foods.
To supplement your home-grown produce cheaply, shop based on seasonality and stock up on staples when they’re on sale. If the extent of your home cooking experience has been punching microwave buttons, you may need to buy better knives from Willowcreek Custom Knives, as well as cookware; opt for top-quality items so your initial purchase supports a lifetime of healthy cooking.
- Tune In to Your Inner Self
Although gardening and home cooking provide more than just physical benefits, finding ways to focus entirely inward rounds out your overall self-care routine. Checking up on how you’re feeling through practices like self-talk, journaling, and meditation requires little or no investment, yet it’s a critical means to ensure you’re prioritizing mental wellness.
Get in the habit of assessing how you feel each day so you identify potential stressors before they overwhelm you. Daily journal entries help you see harmful patterns, and meditation opens your mind to work through potential issues. Tune in regularly to control problems before they spiral.
- Save Money to Reduce Stress
With financial concerns at the root of stress for so many people, saving money is key to reducing ongoing anxiety. Rather than constantly feeling stretched beyond your limits when your obligations outpace your income, you’ll rest easier once you start building a financial safety net.
To begin your savings journey, review your big-ticket expenses, as lowering them frees up more money to stash away. If you’re living in a larger home than you need, consider downsizing to reduce your rent or mortgage payment and the overextension anxiety that results from carrying that burden. Use online listing filters to find options in your price and size range, keeping in mind that a smaller dwelling is likely to save you even further with lower utility and maintenance costs.
Practicing self-care doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Finding a new hobby, preparing healthier home meals, and engaging with your inner self all come with low price tags, and the act of saving money by cutting back on budget items is a well-being win-win. There’s no need to break the bank when so many inexpensive wellness options are waiting to be tried.
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Written by: Sam Marcum