Self Care Assessment

Change is created out of “optimal” anxiety. The purpose of this simple self-care inventory is to do just that — stimulate anxiety, but without immobilizing you. This is not an inventory that assesses every area of your life or who you are as a person. It is a simple inventory that will help you identify your current level of self-care in six key areas. It is meant to help you see any disparity between where you are and where you want to be in relation to self-care. It will help you focus on your needs and identify areas where change is called for.

The state of your self-care system varies at different times in your life. Sometimes you need to get lost in the forest in order to find a new path. Here are a few pointers to help you get the most from the inventory.

  • Being honest with yourself is not easy, but to make changes in your life you need a clear inventory of where you are today. In some respects, this inventory will test how rigorously honest you are with yourself. We all lie to ourselves in one way or another as a way to survive. The more rigorously self-honest you are in answering these questions, the more you will gain from the experience. You don’t need to “look good” or impress anyone. There is no requirement to share your scores with anyone. It’s for you only.
  • You may find yourself in conflict or getting anxious as you answer the questions. Remember that anxiety drives the engine of change. Respect the anxiety, and know there are no “right” answers or perfect scores (if you score high in every category maybe it means you need to lighten up and be less obsessive compulsive!) Hopefully the anxiety will inspire you to put yourself in the driver’s seat of change.
  • Many people say they would answer many of the questions differently, depending on whether it is in relation to their work or in their personal life. If you feel there would be a big difference, you may want to take the test twice — once in the context of your work and once in the context of your personal life. This is okay, but if you see a large disparity between these two, there is an opportunity to reflect on what that means.
  • Some of these questions will bring confusion and anxiety. Just as there are no perfect answers, this is not a perfect test. Even if it’s not clear, do the best you can.
  • As you go through this inventory, you may see many areas in your current self-care system that could use a change. Rather than overhauling too much right now, focus on one or two areas that could use work in the next six to twelve months. Remember, it is better to be successful at one small change, than failing at trying to overhaul too many things!
  • If you don’t know the answers to any of the questions below, count your score a zero on that point.

Questions 1-5: Physical health

This is where you examine the physical aspects of your life — how you are nurturing your body and taking care of your health.

Questions 6-10: Mental wellbeing

This area examines how your mind is supporting your self-care system, and some of the choices you make for having a strong mental attitude and firm mind in your life and work.

Questions 11-15: Managing demands and personal agency

This area deals with how you clarify the most important areas in your life that need attention, and how you manage the demands from others.

Questions 16-20: Spiritual health and inner wellbeing

Spiritual wellbeing is about tapping into a power beyond ourselves to give guidance, support, and clarity on the self-care journey. Spiritual health is about finding inner peace, independent of the roles, successes, and failures of life.

Questions 21-25: Supportive relationships

This area examines the quality of supportive relationships in your life, people that support you and hold you accountable to take care of yourself, and help guide you to your own truth.

Questions 26-30: Meaning

This area speaks to the level of satisfaction and fulfillment you are getting from your life and your work right now that makes the caring in your life meaningful.

1. I get seven to eight hours sleep most nights.
2. I consistently exercise at least three times a week, for at least 20 minutes.
3. I am a non-smoker.
4. My body is a weight that is right for me.
5. I have a healthy, well balanced diet.
6. I am optimistic about my life and my future.
7. Joy and gratitude come easily to me, and I do things that bring me joy.
8. I am free of worry about people, places, and things that I have no control over.
9. I am able to move from self criticism to self acceptance easily (i.e., I treat myself with the same respect and compassion I would a best friend.)
10. I am able to deal with fear, guilt, and insecurity in a constructive way.
11. I am clear about the essential elements that matter most in my life.
12. I attend to my core values on a regular basis.
13. I have clear boundaries, when necessary, around the expectations of others.
14. I am satisfied with the way I handle demands in my life.
15. I have little in my life that needs cleaning up (household clutter, destructive relationships, addictions, unmanageable debts, etc.)
16. I get strength from my religious and/or spiritual beliefs, where I find peace in the midst of chaos.
17. I take quiet time for myself during the day for strength and perspective from within.
18. I have a level of acceptance of my imperfections (self-compassion) and have the strength to let go of my fear and uncertainty.
19. Having the courage and faith to believe in what I cannot see gives me strength in my life.
20. I have a community that supports my spiritual beliefs.
21. I give and receive affection regularly.
22. I have at least one relative within an hour’s drive on whom I can rely.
23. I have a network of friends on whom I can — and do — depend.
24. I have at least one friend that I confide in about personal matters, and I meet with them regularly.
25. I am able to speak openly about my feelings when angry or worried.
26. I enjoy getting out of bed most days, and look forward to the day.
27. I have a sense of purpose in my life.
28. If I suddenly received an inheritance of $1 million, my life wouldn’t change much.
29. I stand up for what I believe in.
30. I express my unique talents, strengths, passions, and dreams on a daily basis.