When you’re having a rough day or a rough week, sometimes you really need to make time for some self-care. A lot of times we think of self-care as an expensive activity (spa day, anyone?), but it definitely doesn’t have to be. There are plenty of inexpensive and even free self-care ideas out there. Here are some self-care activities that are totally free!

self-care activities

Keep a Journal

I love blogging and it’s a great creative outlet, but it’s not always the best outlet for stress relief when I’m really in need of some self-care. First of all, the fact that my blog is a business for me adds an additional layer of stress that wouldn’t be there if I were writing as a hobby. Second, I rarely write about personal things on my blog, so it’s not the same as getting all my feelings out on paper.

I’m someone who tends to overthink things and really let my thoughts eat at me to the point where I lose sleep at night, but I find that writing down those nagging thoughts makes a huge difference. Particularly if I can’t sleep at night, I’ll pull out my journal and write down everything that is bothering me. It almost always helps me get to sleep easier!

Learn Something New

I’m a bit of a nerd, so this one might not exactly be considered “self-care” for everyone, but exercising my mind is great self-care for me! I love to learn new things whether it be reading an article, watching a documentary, or taking a free online class (there are tons available with a quick Google search). If nothing else, pushing yourself to constantly keep learning is great personal development.

Go For a Long Walk

Last year I moved into a new neighborhood and started going for long walks in the evenings to get to know the new neighborhood. I enjoyed it so much that I started making it a routine. Every evening after work, I would go for a long walk around the neighborhood and listen to a podcast episode.

Not only is it a good way to get a little physical activity in if you aren’t working out, it’s also an excellent way to clear your head and take a break from everything else going on in your life. Instead of a podcast, you could also listen to your favorite music or an audiobook.

Spend Time With a Friend

If I’m having a bad day or a bad week, spending time with a friend is a sure fire way to cheer myself up. First of all, it’s nice to have someone to vent to who is happy to listen. But what’s more likely is that we’ll end up having fun doing or talking about something else and I’ll be able to totally take my mind off what was bothering me.

Read a Good Book

I love reading and find it super easy to get sucked into a really good book. This is a great self-care idea for me because it’s an effective way of getting my mind off the things that are bothering me and onto something that just purely entertains me.

When you read as much as I do, the cost of books can add up! Instead, I bought a Kindle a couple of years ago and rent Kindle books from my local library for free!

Plan a Relaxing Day at Home

Sometimes you just need a day to unplug from the real world and focus totally on yourself. For me this usually means sleeping in, hanging out in bed and watching my favorite shows on Netflix, reading a good book, ordering takeout, and taking a long bath and listening to music. It’s not very often that I have an entire day at home with nothing that really needs to get done, so I definitely like to take advantage of them when they come along!


What are your favorite free self-care activities?