Self-care is important for everyone, but it’s essential for those who enjoy being around others. It can be easy to get burnt out if we don’t take the time to recharge, and that’s where social self-care comes in!
In this article, I’ll discuss 23 social self-care ideas that will help you stay engaged and happy. Whether you’re looking for new ideas or just need a push to start engaging in social self-care, this blog post is for you!
What are community care self-care practices?
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, social self-care “refers to the activities and relationships we have with others that promote our well-being.” This can include things like maintaining close relationships, participating in social activities, and volunteering.
It’s important to note that social self-care is not the same as self-care practices that are done alone, like taking a relaxing bath or reading your favorite book. While those practices are important, too, this article will focus on social interactions.
Why is this form of self-care important?
There are many reasons why this self-care type is important for our mental and emotional health. For one, it helps us feel connected to others. When we feel connected, we’re more likely to feel supported and less isolated.
As a self-care tip, this type of self-care can help us boost our mood and reduce stress. Participating in self-care activities with others can release endorphins, which are hormones that have mood-boosting effects.
Best self-care ideas to build social relationships
1. Call a friend
A great way to start practicing social self-care is by calling a friend. You can catch up on each other’s lives, pick each other’s brains regarding goals you have for yourself, or just chat about whatever comes to mind.
This is a low-commitment way to socialize that can be done from the comfort of your own home.
2. Become a volunteer at a senior center
If you’re looking for a way to give back and socialize at the same time, consider volunteering at a local senior center. You can help with things like serving meals, leading activities, or even just conversing with the residents. This is a great way to make new friends and really hone in on emotional self-care!
These are only two of the many types of self-care to partake in. If you’re interested in learning more, check out the rest of this blog post for ideas that will work for you!
3. Join an online forum
Recovering at home from an injury, I found online forums like Reddit to be incredibly helpful. To read comments and threads from other people going through the same thing as myself was reassuring, and I even made a few friends in the process.
I joined subreddits related to my interests, which also helped me find new hobbies to focus on during my recovery. If you’re feeling isolated, I highly recommend joining an online forum or two!
4. Take a cooking class
Whether you are desiring to incorporate more healthy food into your daily life or just want to learn how to cook your favorite dishes from scratch, taking a cooking class is a great way to socialize while also doing something productive.
5. Find a local walking group to join
A great start to your morning routine is by getting some exercise in and what better way to do that than by joining a local walking group? This is a fantastic way to meet new people who share a common interest with you – getting active and maintaining their physical health!
6. Attend a meetup interest group
Take a break from social media and interact with people in the real life. Meetup is a website that helps people with similar interests connect in the best way by planning to meet in person. This can be anything from book clubs, and photography, to hiking groups.
7. Visit a farmer’s market
Grab a close friend or two and head to your nearest farmer’s market! Not only is this a great way to support local businesses, but you’ll appreciate getting some fresh air while also getting in some much-needed Vitamin D from all the fresh produce.
While you’re there, take the time to chat with the vendors and get to know the people who are helping make your food.
8. Check out a new restaurant with friends
If any of the above ideas for different activities seem too intimidating, try something familiar like going out to eat with friends! Trying a new restaurant is a great way to explore different cultures and flavors, all while spending time with the people you know will give you tons of social support.
9. Try out my version of a vision board/mood board
Right here on the blog, I have a post detailing the steps to creating an effective vision board. You can create your goals as long as you want to but this process is one of a kind. Why not try this with a friend or family member and see what kinds of goals you both come up with?
10. Schedule lunch breaks with your co-worker
We all experience going through difficult times at work. A great way to reduce some stress is by scheduling a lunch break with your coworker as part of your daily routine. This can be used as an opportunity to get to know your coworker on a personal level and create a bond that can make work more bearable.
11. Commit to group therapy
If 1:1 therapy elicits negative emotions, perhaps give group therapy a try. Getting professional help while surrounded by others in a similar situation can help build a sense of community and support.
Talk about doing the small steps that lead to big changes!
12. Join a plant group
Have you been slacking on the to-do list you created to help keep your low-maintenance plant alive?
If not for Facebook, I wouldn’t have known that within those groups there are people who live locally whom I could easily meet up with. This could be a great form of self-care for someone who’s looking for a way to connect with others and learn how not to kill their plant.
13. Go to the gym with a friend
One of the best things you can do to take care of your body is to engage in movement to keep your muscles and joints healthy. Going to the gym can sometimes be a drag, but if you go with your best friend it’ll make the time fly.
14. Start a book club
Now, there are different ways you can approach this. You can either join an existing book club or you can start your own! I found like-minded women in a Facebook group to start one with. Turns out, reading a good book was also their idea of self-care.
15. Sign up for a dance class
Forming your own self-care plan doesn’t have to be mentally taxing. In times of stress, it’s important to do things that make you feel good. If dancing is something that brings you joy, then sign up for a class!
Dancing is great for stress management and plus, you get to meet new people who share your interest.
16. Learn a new language
A healthy way to maximize your brain’s potential is by learning a new language. Not only will you be expanding your knowledge, but you’ll also be opening yourself up to new cultural experiences.
If you’re looking for social activity, try joining a language meetup or support group where you can practice your new skills with others.
17. Host a game night
This is on my list of free self-care ideas to do with those you have close connections. Make your living space a gathering place for friends and family by hosting a game night! This is a great way to have some fun while also getting your emotional needs met.
18. Join a bird-watching group
If you’re looking for new activities to do outside, consider joining a bird-watching group! This is a great way to learn about everyday wildlife while also challenging yourself to be open to different types of self-care.
19. Create a gratitude gift for a friend
One way to show your gratitude is by giving back to those who have helped you during tough times. A great way to do this is by creating a gratitude gift for a friend. This can be something as simple as a homemade card or baked goods.
20. Join a local butterfly garden group
Butterflies are one of nature’s most beautiful creations. If you’re looking for a way to get outside and enjoy some time in nature, consider joining a local butterfly garden group.
This is a great way to learn about different types of butterflies, and how to increase their quality of life in your garden, while also meeting new people.
21. Take a yoga class
Another option to address your physical needs is by taking a yoga class. This is a great way to get some exercise while also clearing your mind.
If you’re looking for social activity, consider taking a class with a friend. If one won’t go with you, be open to meeting new people in the class.
22. Find a bike group to explore trails with
To support a healthy diet, regular exercise is key. If you’re looking for a social activity that gets you moving, consider joining a bike group. This is a great way to explore different trails while also getting some exercise.
23. Have friends over for a potluck dinner
Maintaining good relationships with your friends can make a positive impact on your life. If you’re looking for a way to show your appreciation for your friends, consider having them over for a potluck dinner.
Saying yes to self-care activities that you may not normally do is such an important part of self-care. So, go ahead and invite them over and enjoy each other’s food and company!
Community self-care ideas you should be open to trying
Self-care is important for maintaining your mental and physical health. There are many different ways to practice self-care, but social self-care is often overlooked.
If you’re looking for ideas on how to incorporate social self-care into your life, consider some of the activities on this list. From joining a local bike group to having friends over for dinner, there are plenty of ways to get started.
Your mind, body, and soul will thank you for it. If you found this read helpful, please share or implement it in your own life!