I find using this time to prepare for big meetings or interviews especially helpful. Sometimes I speak to myself out loud as I do my skin care routine: I give myself affirmations, or, if I’m anxious for an event, I practice what I’m going to say. Before public speaking, big meetings, or interviews, I tend to get incredibly nervous—not only do I privately suffer (an aggressively bubbling stomach, racing heart, and shortness of breath are all the norm), but my shaky hands and voice are a quick giveaway to anyone I’m speaking to. 

Rehearsing hypothetical answers or scenarios in the privacy of my own bathroom, completely by myself, helps me feel more confident in myself and my words, which takes the edge off my nerves. Truth be told, if I didn’t have a skin care routine, I’m not sure I would carve out the time to execute this kind of preparation, but I know it’s the key to my success in otherwise anxiety-producing settings.

I find the choice to complete my skin care routine an impressive act of self-determination—it’s symbolic of me starting or ending my day at its fullest potential. I’m making the choice to prioritize taking care of myself.

Of course, a skin care routine isn’t a singular solution to any mental health issues, but it is an opportunity to take more time alone with yourself. I like to think of it as a standing, twice-a-day date to check in with yourself and where you’re at.