5 Effective Ways Celebrities Practice Self-Care

When we talk about goal setting, it’s easy to focus on work-based or entrepreneurial goals. Success in that arena means success in life (or so the myth goes). Of course, it’s very easy to follow that logic straight into workaholic behaviors that diminish your quality of life and damage personal relationships. This attitude dismisses a crucial component of long-term success and happiness: self-care. If you’ve taken an “I’ll worry about it later” attitude about your health and mental wellbeing, take a look at the self-care strategies of some of the world’s most successful people.

Oprah - Pets

Oprah Winfrey is the quintessential entrepreneur. Raised in poverty, she leveraged her drive and talent into a multi-billion dollar media empire with global reach. As one might expect, Oprah is a woman with many demands on her. So how does she keep balance? She spends time with her dogs, all five of them. For someone who counts the likes of Tony Robbins and Marianne Williamson as friends, this might seem a bit basic. Then again, she might be on to something.

It turns out that pets aren’t only a source of responsibility. They provide many health and mental wellness benefits. Interacting with your pets can lower your overall stress level. It helps stave off depression and anxiety. It can even help reduce nasty things like cholesterol and triglycerides, which lowers your risk of heart disease. Dogs can even make it easier for someone to make social connections. Take your dog for a walk somewhere where there are other people. It’s next to impossible not to end up in a conversation.

Tony Robbins – Meditation

Tony Robbins is a name that you’re almost certainly familiar with, even if you’ve never read one of his books or attended a seminar. He is the charismatic high chancellor of the modern American self-help movement. With book titles like Unlimited Power and Unleash the Giant Within, you might think that Robbins wouldn’t concern himself much with self-care.

As it turns out, Robbins is very committed to self-care. He starts every day with a ten-minute process that focuses on gratitude, love, and visualizing completed goals. While a little more tightly structured than most people’s approach, what Robbins is describing here is essentially meditation. Meditation offers numerous benefits that include better memory and attention span, stress reduction, improved self-control, and increased immune function. 

Arianna Huffington - Sleep

Arianna Huffington helped create the wildly successful and award-winning Huffington Post. Yet in 2007, Huffington collapsed at her desk from exhaustion. This experience turned Huffington into a staunch advocate for getting enough sleep. She even wrote a bestselling book on the subject called The Sleep Revolution. It’s not a trivial issue, either, with nearly a third of Americans operating on some level of sleep deprivation.

Science backs her up on this issue. Insufficient sleep does all kind of wretched things to you. In the short term, it can compromise your thinking and decision-making skills. Ever found yourself staring into your fridge when you’re tired, incapable of choosing between the leftovers? You don’t just feel dumber after a short night of sleep. You actually are dumber. Chronic sleep deprivation contributes to a laundry list of medical problems ranging from obesity and heart disease to diabetes and strokes.

Jeff Bezos – Sane Scheduling

You’d think the CEO of Amazon, one of the most valuable companies in the world, would be a full-on workaholic. You’d be wrong. The 55-year-old Bezos doesn’t buy into the mentality that success means being on the clock 18 hours a day.

Bezos reportedly dislikes meetings and tries to get any high-powered meetings wrapped up before noon. He eats breakfast with his kids and doesn’t stay late at the office unnecessarily. The real benefit of this approach is that helps Bezos and anyone else with a full-time career avoid burnout. The innate fulfillment of a healthy personal life feeds back into your professional life as energy and creativity. The creativity and energy you pour into your professional life feeds back into your personal life as success and security.

Richard Branson – Exercise…and Baths

Richard Branson is the legendary founder of Virgin Group, which partly or wholly controls a vast array of businesses. The most famous of those businesses are Virgin Mobile, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Megastores. With so many competing concerns, you’d think every second of Branson’s day would be scheduled with decisions affecting thousands of employees. That’s mostly true, but Branson takes time out for some self-care.

He starts his days with some exercise, either in the form of tennis or windsurfing. The benefits of daily exercise are well-known but include weight control, reduced risks of heart disease and mood improvement. Branson is a fan of baths. As it turns out, hot baths burn calories. They provide some mental benefits by giving you time and space for solitude and quiet thinking. While not quite meditation, this quiet thinking is meditation’s first cousin. It lets you reflect and relax, and it can even spark creative connections.

The contemporary world and startup culture tend to idealize the crazy hours and glib neglect for your wellbeing as marks of your seriousness and commitment. The reality of those crazy hours and glib neglect are nothing to celebrate. The fatigue involved leads to compromised thinking, which prompts bad decision and knee-jerk reactions. Almost everyone can think of a fight they started because they were tired and cranky.

The most successful people in the world either intuit or know these dangers from personal experience. They engage in active self-care to maintain their health and balance. A few of their options of choice include pets, meditation, and exercise. You can make a conscious effort not to overschedule yourself right out of a personal life. Maybe the most important thing of all, you can get enough sleep.