A self-care checklist includes thoughtful activities that will promote your physical, mental, and emotional health.

But how do you make a self-care checklist that fits your needs?

Here’s our list of 120 self-care examples along with a printable daily or weekly Self-Care Checklist PDF.

Now, the ball is in your court.

Self-Care Checklist PDF

self-care checklist

While self-care seems to be the trend since COVID-19 began, you’d be surprised at how few people actively practice self-care.

In early 2019, before the pandemic, a study ran by Kelton Global and Birchbox found several surprising statistics:

  • 1 in 3 people feel guilty taking time for themselves
  • 67% report caring for others over their own self-care
  • Singles are 40% better at making time for self-care than people in a relationship

The study ends by sharing that only 30% of people in the US make time for self-care. But, of course, if we learned anything over the past years, it is to take more time for ourselves. Right?

Thankfully, yes.

A study by Samueli Integrative Health Programs saw improvement, with 80% of Americans saying that they’ll continue practicing self-care after the pandemic.

However, the most telling statistic is that 44% desired more guidance and support in their self-care. That’s where our daily or weekly self-care checklist PDF steps in.

What Are the 8 Areas of Self-Care?

Self-care, to some, may just seem like a walk in the park — literally. But, according to the Habits of Wellbeing founder, Jane Taylor, self-care is comprised of 8 individual areas, categories, or types of focus.

  1. Physical
  2. Psychological
  3. Emotional
  4. Social
  5. Professional
  6. Environmental
  7. Spiritual
  8. Financial

Seems like a lot, right? Don’t worry, it’s not so hard, and practicing self-care in all 8 of these categories will improve your life (and relationship) in so many ways.

We’ll take the confusion out of it and provide you with a printable Self Care Checklist for guided, daily tasks.

Why is Self-Care Important?

Even if you think your stress levels are under control, keeping tabs on your health is the most important thing you can do for yourself.

While it’s easy to identify big changes and stressors in your life (most commonly in your finances, career, and relationships), it’s harder to determine the smaller patterns that impact your daily or weekly life.

By staying connected with your health and feelings, it will be easier to manage stress and make a strategy for improvement.

What is a Good Self-Care Plan?

While self-care is deeply personal, here are a few things to think about when setting up your basic self-care checklist:

1. Self-care shouldn’t be a burden or feel like a chore.

A simple check-in is sufficient. If you don’t think you can spare more than 5-minutes a day on self-care, that’s fine. The point is to reconnect, rebalance, and refresh, not overwhelm yourself.

2. Focus on progress, not perfection.

Self-care is a process, and it’s unrealistic to think that you’ll be able to complete your checklist perfectly every single day.

Instead, aim to practice self-care in each of the 8 areas at least once a month. You’ll eventually find the activities that you love the most (like reading a book before bed or calling a friend every Sunday) and stick to those.

Print the PDF Self-Care Checklist to create your own template with our list of 120 self-care ideas

3. You deserve it.

A major reason why self-care is often left by the wayside is that people feel guilty doing it. Let us say it loud and clear: self-care is not selfish.

If you’re not in tip-top shape, then you can’t care as well for your family, friends, and coworkers.

If you’re still fighting this feeling, let whomever it is that is important to you — perhaps your partner or a child or parent you care for — that you need to take 15-minutes a day, every day at a certain time, to work on yourself.

They won’t say “no.”

4. It should be easy.

Ultimately, self-care is simply taking care of yourself. So, there’s no need to overthink it.

If you’re already brushing your teeth and feeding yourself, then you’re covering the basics of self-care! Take this opportunity to consider your needs, your personal goals, and how various self-care activities will get you there.

Let’s get started!

Self-Care Checklist PDF Form

Download The Self-Care Checklist PDF

Including our list of self-care ideas along with printable daily and weekly self-care checklists. 

Fill in your checklist, take action, and master your life!

Building your self-care checklist

Creating a self-care routine that works for you means stringing together activities that you enjoy, promotes your health goals, and can make a habit of performing consistently.

While there are 8 areas of self-care, this doesn’t mean you need to do 8 things every day. Plus, you’ll find that some of these areas naturally overlap with others.

Instead, try to give yourself a check-up at least once in each area per month.

Below are the meanings for each category and self-care examples of healthy activities from each. Use this as a menu to shop around which activities might be a good fit for your self-care checklist.

1. Physical Self-Care

Physical self-care encompasses the most basics of basics: feeding yourself, moving your body, drinking water, sexual/physical touch, and sleeping.

While no less important than the other areas of self-care, for us, we love starting with physical self-care because becoming healthy has a domino effect.

By gaining traction with, for example, your workouts, you’ll feel stronger when tackling your career self-care too.

Here are some common physical self-care activities to consider for your Self-Care Checklist:

 

  • 30-Day Weight Loss Challenge
  • Drink more water (try for half your body weight (lbs.) in ounces of water)
  • Sleep at least 8-hours a night. You can track it with a free app like Pillow.
  • Follow a fitness program calendar
  • Do our free Couple’s Yoga Routine weekly
  • Eat one more portion of vegetables a day than normal
  • Take time to stretch before bed
  • Join the Meatless Monday movement
  • Work on your posture
  • Build a home gym
  • Walk to the grocery store
  • Increase your daily steps each week
  • Eat more fiber-rich foods
  • Keep a food journal with a free app like MyFitnessPal
  • Meal prep once a week

2. Psychological Self-Care

Psychological self-care, also sometimes termed intellectual self-care, can be cultivated by fostering your creativity, love of learning, and mindfulness.

In our world of online learning, there are many helpful psychological self-care checklist activities for 2021.

To boost your psychological self-care routine, consider the following ideas:

 

3. Emotional Self-Care

Emotional self-care covers your mental well-being.

Take time to recognize your feelings, fears, and worries. Show yourself patience and self-love and compassion. You can also work on expanding your emotional literacy with others.

Consider these emotional self-care examples to add to your daily or weekly Self-Care Checklist PDF:

 

4. Social Self-Care

Taking care of yourself socially is up to you and you only. While you may have a roommate or even a spouse, make sure your social network expands beyond your doors.

As they say, it takes a village to raise a child, and expecting all of that support from just one or a few people will leave you lacking in social self-care. Think of yourself as that child, and fill your life with positive people from a variety of backgrounds.

Here is our list of social self-care ideas to add to your daily self-care checklist:

 

  • Join a local club
  • Call a different friend once a week
  • Start a coworker happy hour
  • Invite a different friend or coworker out to lunch once a month
  • Reach out to a prior mentor
  • Write a letter to your grandparents or parents
  • Send a postcard for no reason
  • Retreat away from toxic relationships
  • Find new meetups for your hobbies
  • Instead of Googling a recipe or a how-to video, call a family member
  • Spend more time with your friends and family
  • Reach out to your network when you need help
  • Start small talk with people in the grocery line
  • Ride the bus or subway with your phone off
  • Check-in with a neighbor

5. Professional Self-Care

If you’re able to work from home like us, you know how much the boundary between work and home blurs together after a few short weeks.

While professional self-care may not sound integral to your happiness, think again.

There’s a reason why the World Health Organization added burnout syndrome, defined as “chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed,” to their compendium of diseases.

Working is something we spend most of our days and lives doing, so even if you’re not at your dream job yet, you can still practice self-care at work. This makes for a healthier and more productive environment for yourself.

Here are our suggestions for your printable weekly self-care checklist:

 

  • Find someone who inspires you to be your business mentor
  • Sign up for networking events
  • Ask your boss for the raise or to clarify what you need to do for your next promotion
  • Take all of your vacation days
  • Take your full lunch hour
  • Find more support to achieve a better work-life balance
  • Read personal development books related to your field
  • Write a work to-do list every day
  • Tackle the day’s toughest problems first
  • Call more, email less
  • Request more performance reviews
  • Change to a standing desk
  • Stock healthy, energizing snacks at your desk
  • Keep a notebook on you to brainstorm or jot down good ideas throughout the day
  • Request for more creative projects that excite you

6. Environmental Self-Care

Environmental self-care doesn’t mean you need to battle climate change (but props if you do!)

It means managing your immediate environment — your office, bedroom, and car — so that it brings you happiness, calm, and a sense of order.

Incorporate these environmental self-care activities to make sure your environment nurtures progress and doesn’t stall it:

 

  • Clean out the junk food from your kitchen pantry
  • Commit to our 30-Day Declutter Challenge
  • Learn how to become a minimalist
  • Strive for more environmentally friendly lifestyle habits
  • Clean the dishes and kitchen as soon as you use them
  • Track and curtail your screen time
  • Recycle
  • Try to repurpose your items before throwing them out
  • Keep a clutter-free office
  • Donate extra items to charity
  • Change your route home to not drive by tempting, unhealthy restaurants
  • Keep your workout clothes next to your toothbrush
  • Hire a housekeeper to save time
  • Grocery shop online instead of at the store to avoid buying unhealthy snacks
  • Follow feng shui rules to bring peace to your home

7. Spiritual Self-Care

No matter your religion or beliefs, take a moment to tap into your spiritual side. Whether you feel most authentic in a church, on a jog, or in nature, think of what your spiritual side needs most.

Unsure of where your spirituality lies? Think of your belief system and what is most important to you. Do your best to live well within that framework.

Spiritual self-care activities are very intimate and personal, but consider these activities for your daily Self-Care Checklist:

 

8. Financial Self-Care

Last but certainly not least is financial self-care. Money is a top stressor for most people according to studies, so while this is eighth on our list, it is incredibly important.

Feeling more secure in your finances will help you feel safe and protected in other areas of life.

Start prioritizing your financial self-care with these activities:

 

  • Begin with our Couple’s Finance Guide, which covers all-things-money when it comes to couples
  • Increase awareness of where your money goes by creating a budget or signing up for free websites like Mint that track it
  • Brainstorm which passion projects could turn into a side hustle
  • To increase income, consider starting a side gig
  • Aim for one day a week where you don’t spend money
  • Reduce your online shopping to only necessities
  • Start paying down debt
  • Increase financial literacy by reading books, like Rich Bitch by Nicole Lapin
  • Start investing in index funds
  • Ask for help or guidance if you need to
  • Write down on paper what your financial goals are for the future and build strategies that will bring you there
  • Make a plan to donate to charity frequently
  • Max out your retirement plans
  • Listen to a money podcast and learn more about the financial situation
  • List out where your money goes and see which spending habits can be eliminated or reduced
Self-Care Checklist PDF Form

Download The Self-Care Checklist PDF

Including our list of self-care ideas along with printable daily and weekly self-care checklists. 

Fill in your checklist, take action, and master your life!

Closing THoughts

Which self-care activities will make it to your self-care checklist template? Remember, start slow because any progress forward means a better life down the road.

With the 120 ideas provides you’ll quickly advance your basic self-care checklist to an extreme self-care checklist. 

If you have questions or ideas, please share them in the comments section of this post. For more reading on self-care, check out our DIY At-Home Self-Care Retreat agenda, or browse our list of the best self-care apps. 

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The creators of Ryan and Alex Duo Life. We are a husband-wife duo and “lifestyle engineers.”

After eight years working in the corporate world as engineers, we left our high-powered jobs to tackle our true passion — helping couples engineer their best lives.

The synergy of our engineering minds and ten years of health coaching experience produced Ryan and Alex Duo Life. Our mission is to help you transform your bodies, minds, and relationship as a couple.

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