Top 12 Affordable Self Care Ideas From California Therapists

top 12 affordable self-care ideas from CAlifornia therapists

top 12 affordable
self-care ideas from CAlifornia therapists

Obviously, we think that therapy is a great way to take care of yourself. However, there are also many other things that you can incorporate into your self-care routine. Many of these things are free or affordable. The more of them you try, the more tools you might have to help you through life’s challenges. Here are some of the things that our therapist recommend when you’re looking for the best self-care on a budget.

1. Try Free Online Yoga

self care with free online yoga

CMP associate therapist Erma Kyriakos recommends finding a yoga channel that you like on Youtube. She says, “I like Sarah Beth Yoga, because she is very clear and not a lot of ‘fluff’. She has short videos, long videos, videos for beginners and intermediates, yoga for grief, anxiety, digestion, for the morning or sleep, etc.”

HSP Therapist April Snow likes this recommendation. She says Yoga With Adrienne is a good channel.

Similarly, therapist Ingrid Tsong recommends “donation based online yoga with Rusty Wells.” and adds, “movement and laughter, it cheers me up every time!”

Of course, you should find the free online yoga classes that feel right for you and your own self-care journey.

2. Find an Affordable Local Spa

Find an Affordable Local Spa

California therapist Odessa Avianna Perez notes that WiSpa in Los Angeles charges $30 for “virtually no time limit on saunas, hot tubs, steam rooms, and a sweet roof deck.” She further recommends that you “Bring your own face mask and exfoliator and treat yourself to a whole spa day.”

Similarly, Kabuki Spa costs about the same price here in San Francisco. You might be able to find other affordable options with a local gym membership or perhaps even in your own building. Similarly San Francisco Bay Area therapist April Snow recommends community acupuncture. Take the time to rest with your body.

3. Give Yourself a Short Foot Rub

Therapists Recommend: Best Self Care On a Budget

Bilingual California therapist Sofia Escuserò says recommends that you try giving yourself a short foot rub. She notes, “It’s easy to neglect your feet (or just be annoyed at them for being so sore after a long day), but you might be surprised at how nice it can feel to give your feet some tenderness and attention.” This is a little way that you can make your mind and body feel better at the same time.

4. Go For a Walk

walking for self care

Therapist Dena Ehrlich says “Throw on your sneakers, flip flops, or even go in your bare feet.” Get moving, even slowly, and feel your body and mind connect.

Similarly, therapist Elizabeth Dausch recommends that you take a 20-30 minute walking break on your work days. And therapist Stephanie Bain adds, “Going outside and breathing fresh air offers a perspective change.”

5. Jump Into the Ocean

Jump Into the Ocean

Therapist Aiden Pelly also recommends getting outside for “fresh air and exercise.” For example, you might “climb Mount Tam … walking up through the trees and getting above the clouds and the city is sure to lift your spirits. Or if you can handle the cold, jump into the ocean and cleanse yourself in the invigorating Pacific Ocean.”

Conversely, if you prefer warm water, therapist Julia Ward recommends a hot bath or shower as one of the most affordable options for self-care.

6. Journal, Perhaps With Prompts

prompt journal for self care

California therapist Elizabeth Dausch recommends that you “grab a notebook and write down what you notice going on in your inner world.” If the blank page intimidates you, then “you could also get a journal with prompts to support your processing.” Do you have any good recommendations for this type of journal? We would love to collect and share your suggestions!

California therapist Chris Swayne recommends keeping a gratitude journal.

7. Insight Timer App

Insight Timer App for self care

There are many different apps that you can use as part of your self-care. SF Bay Area therapist Elizabeth Dausch recommends the Insight Timer App which offers guided exercises, sound healing, and more. Their website says that it’s the “#1 free app for sleep, anxiety, and stress.”

8. Get a House Plant

self care flowers

We have one more recommendation from Elizabeth Dausch: “Bring some natural beauty into your home with a plant or flowers.” This can be a very affordable way to add life to your home. Plants offer many mental health benefits.

9. Unplug From Your Devices

unplug for self care

Therapist Ayala Kalisher says, “Turn off your phone and your computer for an afternoon. What you do from there is up to you. Maybe it’s reading a book, maybe it’s making some art, maybe it’s walking around Lake Merritt and having a conversation with a stranger. Just unplugging from our phones now and then can be so restorative.” So true!

10. Meditate


California therapist Connor Moss says that the best budget self-care is “Meditation! Sit in a quiet comfortable space, and practice focusing your attention on your breath. Every time you notice your attention wandering, gently and compassionately return your focus to your breath. This simple practice, done daily for 5, 10, or 20 minutes can work wonders to calm anxious thoughts and center your mind.”

If you prefer guided meditations, San Francisco Bay Area therapist April Snow recommends listening to Tara Brach.

11. Spend a Day at the Library

library for self care

When was the last time that you went to your local library, browsed the stacks, and stayed there for the day enjoying what you found? Therapist April Snow says that this is one of her favorite budget self-care options. It’s particularly great for Highly Sensitive People, which are the clients she specializes in working with.

In a similar vein, California therapist Julia Ward recommends “reading something transporting.” See some of our therapists’ recommended reads.

12. Do More Of What Feels Good

do more of what feels good

And finally, therapist Io Bones says, “Pay close attention to what makes you feel good and do more of it. Spend time with people who make you feel good. Move your body in ways that make you feel good. Eat food that makes you feel good. Also, make time to balance doing with restfulness.”

Therapy is an important part of self-care for many people. Browse our therapist directory to find the therapist who might be right for you.

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