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by Clinicians at Ganey Counseling on 03/05/15

Although Spring is just around the corner, it’s still not quite here. At this time of year, when it’s still frigidly cold and the snow just keeps on falling, it is easy to let ourselves go. Instead of maintaining a social life, we become cooped up in the house. Instead of feeling motivated and getting tasks accomplished, we may slump onto the couch and watch hours of Netflix or Sports Center. The laundry piles up, the dishes overflow; the new years resolution work out routines come to a halt. We may even find ourselves fighting the winter blues and struggling to get out of bed each day. Do any of these things sound familiar? Perhaps this doesn’t describe you – GOOD! Consider it a blessing. For many of us, however, the LONG winter takes its toll on us socially, mentally, physically, and sometimes even spiritually.


mage result for flowers blooming + snowAlthough the first day of Spring is just a few weeks away (whoohooo!) it is important to practice good self-care throughout the remaining weeks of winter. It’s good to practice self-care all year round, but what better time to take a personal inventory than when we are may be struggling most? The web is filled with various self-care tools and tips but I thought a Self-Care Assessment would be the most profitable first step as it will help to identify areas that need some attention. Consider it a “spring cleaning” for your body, mind, and soul.



1) scroll down to the Assessment 

2) Read the directions & numerically rate each area
(you may want to write it down your answers on another piece of paper or copy and paste it to your home computer.)

3) Talk it over with your therapist or a friend

4) Make the necessary changes


Don’t wait for Spring to recharge, get a head start; begin today!

Submitted by Sarah E. Loew, MS

Self-Care Assessment  


When you are finished, look for patterns in your responses. Are you more active in some areas of self-care but ignore others? Are there items on the list that make you think, "I would never do that"? Listen to your inner responses, your internal dialogue about self-care and making yourself a priority. Take particular note of anything you would like to include more in your life.


Rate the following areas according to how well you think you are doing: 

3 = I do this well (e.g., frequently) 

2 = I do this OK (e.g., occasionally) 

1 = I barely or rarely do this 

0 = I never do this 

? = This never occurred to me


Physical Self-Care

____ Eat regularly (e.g. breakfast, lunch, and dinner)

____ Eat healthily

____ Exercise

____ Get regular medical care for prevention

____ Get medical care when needed

____ Take time off when sick

____ Get massages

____ Dance, swim, walk, run, play sports, sing, or do some other fun physical activity

____ Get enough sleep

____ Wear clothes I like

____ Take vacations

____ Other:

Psychological Self-Care

____ Take day trips or mini-vacations

____ Make time away from telephones, email, and the Internet

____ Make time for self-reflection

____ Notice my inner experience - listen to my thoughts, beliefs, attitudes,  feelings

____ Have my own personal psychotherapy

____ Write in a journal

____ Read literature that is unrelated to work

____ Do something at which I am not expert or in charge

____ Attend to minimizing stress in my life

____ Engage my intelligence in a new area, e.g., go to an art show, sports event, theatre

____ Be curious

____ Say no to extra responsibilities sometimes

____ Other:

Emotional Self-Care

____ Spend time with others whose company I enjoy

____ Stay in contact with important people in my life

____ Give myself affirmations, praise myself

____ Love myself

____ Re-read favorite books, re-view favorite movies

____ Identify comforting activities, objects, people, places and seek them out

____ Allow myself to cry

____ Find things that make me laugh

____ Express my outrage in social action, letters, donations, marches, protests

____ Other:

Spiritual Self-Care

____ Make time for reflection

____ Spend time in nature

____ Find a spiritual connection or community

____ Be open to inspiration

____ Cherish my optimism and hope

____ Be aware of non-material aspects of life

____ Try at times not to be in charge or the expert

____ Be open to not knowing

____ Identify what is meaningful to me and notice its place in my life

____ Meditate

____ Pray

____ Sing

____ Have experiences of awe

____ Contribute to causes in which I believe

____ Read inspirational literature or listen to inspirational talks, music

____ Other:

Relationship Self-Care

____ Schedule regular dates with my partner or spouse

____ Schedule regular activities with my children

____ Make time to see friends

____ Call, check on, or see my relatives

____ Stay in contact with faraway friends

____ Make time to reply to personal emails and letters; send holiday cards

____ Allow others to do things for me

____ Enlarge my social circle

____ Ask for help when I need it

____ Share a fear, hope, or secret with someone I trust

____ Other:

Workplace or Professional Self-Care

____ Take a break during the workday (e.g., lunch)

____ Take time to chat with co-workers

____ Make quiet time to complete tasks

____ Identify projects or tasks that are exciting and rewarding

____ Set appropriate limits

____ Balance my caseload so that no one day or part of a day is “too much”

____ Arrange work space so it is comfortable and comforting

____ Ask for help when needed

____ Negotiate for my needs (benefits, pay raise)

____ Have a peer support group

Overall Balance

____ Strive for balance within my work-life and work day

____ Strive for balance among work, family, relationships, play, and rest 

Other Areas of Self-Care that are Relevant to You







(Retrieved 8/6/2010 from http://www.ballarat.edu.au/aasp/student/sds/self_care_assess.shtml and adapted by Lisa D. Butler, Ph.D.) 




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