Overworked and underpaid. Too busy and too tired. These phrases are the mantra of an American society that, according to the Institute of Medicine, has the dubious distinction of falling behind nearly every other affluent country in terms of life expectancy, rate of injury and illness, and overall health. The dismal figures regarding our health impact not just our happiness, but our financial bottom line.
While the macro-level reality may not change without a concerted effort from policymakers and entire communities of people, there are actions you can personally take to safeguard your and your family’s mental, physical, and emotional health through the practice of self-care. Chances are, self-care isn’t quite what you think it is.