• Misti Luke, LCSW

21 Day Self-Care Challenge

When was the last time you tackled personal growth or development exercises? When was the last time you evaluated your self-care routine?



If it's been a while, consider this blog post as your personal invitation to upgrade your self-care game by participating in my completely customizable 21-day self-care challenge.


Now that spring is in the air, what better way to shake off the previous year than by becoming more disciplined and intentional about treating yourself with kindness by upping your self-care game? One could argue that being kind to yourself essentially begins and ends with taking better care of yourself. When you take outstanding care of yourself, you can;

  • improve your mental health

  • sleep better

  • maintain a more positive outlook

  • stay physically healthier

  • make better choices

  • feel less stressed

  • improve self-esteem

  • become more empowered

  • one-up your overall state of mind

Unlike many online self-care challenges, the 21-day challenge is intentionally non-specific, allowing you to tailor each initiative to your lifestyle and personal preferences. Without further ado, let's jump right into it.


WEEK #1


Time 1: HANG

Hang; a picture, clean clothes, a hummingbird feeder, wall art, a television, or anything else you've been putting off hanging up.


Day 2: PLAN

Plan a party, event, vacation, dinner menu, your work week, your school week, outfits for a week, the next hour, day, week, a month of your life.

Day 3: ORGANIZE

Organize one room in your home, your emails, toolbox, contents of your desk, a bookshelf, tack room, the pantry, your thoughts on paper.

Day 4: REPLACE

Replace windshield wipers, HVAC filter, burned-out light bulbs, batteries in smoke detectors, negative thoughts with more positive ones.

Day 5: GIVE

Give someone your undivided attention or give your time to a worthy cause. Give the person behind you your spot in the checkout line. Give a gift to someone special. Don't have anything to give another person? That's okay. You can give yourself a break.


Day 6: WATCH

Watch the birds, children playing, a movie, clouds, the sunset, watch yourself in the mirror.

Day 7: CREATE

Create a to-do list, some time for yourself, a calendar, some art, a workout routine, a song playlist, tracks in the sand, mud, or snow.

WEEK #2


Day 8: DECLUTTER

Declutter a junk drawer or a closet—Declutter one room in your home, the garage, or the trunk of your vehicle or your inbox, purse, or wallet.

Day 9: CONSTRUCT

Construct something useful, helpful, fun, wanted, or beautiful using the medium of your choice. Construct a time frame for completing a task you've been procrastinating. Construct an indoor or outdoor fort for the little ones in your life.


Day 10: LISTEN

Listen to someone tell a complete story without interrupting, even if the story is boring. Listen to a podcast or audiobook, wind blowing, or the birds chirping. Listen to the sound of your voice singing a familiar song.


Day 11: SHARE

Share some knowledge, your time, a meal, some tools, your thoughts, and ideas, or a smile with someone at the post office. Share some coffee with a friend.


Day 12: REMOVE

Remove expired items in your; medicine cabinet, garage, frig, makeup bag pantry. Remove negative words from your vocabulary, cobwebs, or weeds from your walkway. Remove a self-defeating thought from your mind.


Day 13: QUIET

Quiet your mind, spray WD40 on the squeaky cabinet in your kitchen, get that rattle fixed in your pickup, feed the cat so it will stop meowing, turn off the television, spend some time in a quiet space alone.

Day 14: PURGE

Purge your life of at least one item that no longer brings you joy. It can be any item, large or small. Is there anything you no longer need or want? If so, donate, recycle, or trash it.


WEEK #3


Day 15: READ

Read whatever your heart desires, such as one chapter in a book, an article, emails, how-to instructions, snail mail, a website, the Bible, the newspaper, your favorite blog.

Day 16: BUDGET

Budget your life. Take a good look at your bank account(s), fine-tune your finances, balance your checking account, create a daily, weekly, monthly, or annual budget or check your credit score.


Day 17: COOK

Cook a new recipe, some comfort food, meal prep for a week, a dish for a neighbor or friend, popcorn for yourself, your grandma's salsa recipe.


Day 18: PAMPER

Pamper yourself, your pet, or your significant other.


Day 19: AFFIRM

Affirm your remarkable internal self-worth with positive self-talk to remind yourself that you are good enough and that good things are coming your way. Affirm your plans for the future and your positive place in the world. Affirm your value to yourself.


Day 20: WRITE

Write down all of your bills. Write down ten things you're grateful for; write a poem, a song, a letter, a to-do list; write down long or short-term goals.


Day 21: REFLECT

Reflect on the past 20 days. Contemplate what you gained or learned about yourself as you completed this self care challenge. Congratulate yourself on a job well done.


When deciding how to carry out each challenge, keep in mind that self-care challenges are an effective way to help identify your priorities, live by your values, build confidence and motivate yourself to work towards your goals.

Meaning, no matter which direction you go in with each challenge, the whole idea is to do something for yourself each day.


Here's hoping you find the 21 day self-care challenge to be a helpful resource that inspires you to jump out of your comfort zone and up your self-care game!


Special thanks goes out to Sandi Moore, LCSW over at Harbor Bend Counseling for collaborating with me on this blog post.

Misti Luke, LCSW maintains a private practice in Broken Bow Oklahoma where she treats adults with a variety of concerns and diagnoses. For correspondence or to inquire about services email misti@mistiluke.com