Vesna Hrsto’s Self-Care Routine: “I didn’t realise I was burning out because I became used to that level of tiredness.”

Vesna Hrsto is an Executive Wellbeing Coach and Mind-Body Peak Performance Specialist and has been voted one of the top ten naturopaths in Australia and New Zealand.

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What does self-care mean to you?

Self care for me is the feeling that I’m taking care of myself, rather than following a strict routine. Needing a routine in order to ‘ ‘fill my cup’’ hasn’t never really worked for me.

Self care means I feel energetic and grounded. If I start to feel tired or stressed, then I recognise these symptoms are my alarms to pull back and take better care of myself. 

How do you know when you’re feeling stressed or burnt out?

The early signs for me are when I hear myself saying “I’m too busy” or I’ll skip workouts because I don’t have enough energy to exercise or find that I lose my patience easily. 

I went through burnout years ago, and I felt tired all the time even though I slept a lot, I felt anxious and would catastrophize even the little things. I didn’t realise I was burning out because I became used to that level of tiredness, it became my new baseline. My productivity dropped, I lost passion in my work and stopped socialising because I just wanted to stay in. 

From that experience, I’m now good at detecting the early signs and pulling back to take care of myself before it gets worse. 

Do you have a regular self-care routine? If so, what does it look like?

I generally always eat well and exercise. This has been my routine ever since I was very young and is just part of normal life. My diet is balanced, clean and organic, but it’s not perfect. I still like to go out with friends for dinner and wine.  

Sleep is everything. Getting to bed early and at the same time is important for me and my productivity. 

A few times a year I’ll do a detox to reset my body and remove toxicity that builds up. It’s also a great way to slow down and listen to my body. 

I take a few regular supplements to keep my body balanced.

One of the most important parts of my self-care is mental and spiritual health. I love reading and learning more about the mind and how to use it in better ways (than worry or over analysing). I like spiritual teachings like ‘A Course In Miracles’ and ‘The 3 Principles’ – anything that lifts me above my everyday problems so I don’t forget the bigger picture in life. 

What bumps you off your self-care routine and how do you get back on course?

When I take on too much work and overload my schedule, I have less time to take care of myself. Generally, when I’m overloaded I’m also overwhelmed which can make it harder to see I need to slow down because everything looks urgent. 

If I start to feel tired or stressed, I know that I need to get more sleep and clear my mind.

Where do you go for inspiration, ideas or tools for self-care?

I love reading and hearing other people’s self-care and self-improvement hacks. I do a lot of online workshops, courses and work with coaches to improve myself. 

My reading hack is the Blinkist app where you can read the highlights of a book in 15 mins, and if you like it, buy the book to find out more. 

What do you think you need to improve in terms of your self-care practice?

Yes, I could definitely fine tune areas of my self-care – I still think it’s ok to push and overload yourself when you want to get more done, even though I try to balance it out with sleep, nutrition and self-care. 

Before you go…

Self-Care is a content series exploring the different self-care routines and habits of people from all walks of life. Get in touch with us today if you’d like to talk about your self-care routine.

About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.