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Some self-care tips from the experts

In past blog posts, we've covered tips for planning for your own long-term care or for providing care or assistance to your loved ones. Often in all the planning and providing, we forget a critical step for own health: self-care. Here are some self-care tips from experts that can help you increase energy and take care of your own body and mind so you can live longer or take better care of someone else.

One doctor reports that he starts his days at a slower pace on purpose whenever possible. That means for the first few minutes or even an hour of the day, you slow your walking pace, keep your devices put away or on vibrate and take time to enjoy your surroundings. Taking time in the morning to really experience your world and find something to be thankful for or joyful in can set the mood for the entire day -- even if it's only that first piping hot cup of coffee or the leftover glory of the sunrise.

A social worker reports that, even when things get hectic, she ensures her kitchen is orderly and clean. For many homes, the kitchen is the heart where people gather and seek sustenance. At the very least, keeping things clean does reduce the spread of germs in food areas, which can boost health through the house.

One PhD notes that it's not always possible to be upbeat and happy every day, and this is especially true if you are dealing with serious end-of-life illnesses or concerns for yourself or someone else. In such times, she says she tries to find at least one useful thing she can do. Finishing a task -- even a small one -- gives you a sense of accomplishment, which can increase your mood and boost productivity.

If you're struggling with care planning or providing long-term care for a loved one, you can get help. Consider talking to an elder law attorney about what your options might be.

Source: Psychology Today, "17 Ways to Take Better Care of Yourself," Alice Boyes, accessed Jan. 13, 2017

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