Give Yourself a “Treat Yo’ Self Day” Because Why Not, You Deserve It! 

There is a very memorable phrase and concept pulled from an episode in the hit television show, “Parks and Recreation.” In the season 4 episode titled “Pawnee Rangers,” “Treat Yo’ Self Day” is a day-long excursion the characters, Tom and Donna, (created by the show’s writers) take each year, specifically on October 13th. Through the show’s dialogue, Tom describes the events as “Treat. Yo. Self. Once a year, Donna and I spend a day treating ourselves. What do we treat ourselves to? Clothes. Treat yourself. Fragrances. Massages. Treat Yourself. Mimosas. Fine leather goods…it’s the best day of the year.” 

Since this episode premiered, the concept of treating yourself has taken off. Not only is it a fun catchy phrase to say and remember, it has morphed into a form of self care. In fact, while doing research for this article, I discovered that the event has been added to several calendar and holiday websites. While your day doesn’t have to be held on October 13th, everyone should schedule a “treat yo’ self” day at least once a year, because, let’s face it, we deserve it. We work hard. We are stressed and busy. So, why not set aside one day a year to do something for you and put everything else aside? The concept doesn’t have to be a day-long event; maybe you decide to spend an hour here or there or half a day every month. Work with your schedule and what fits best for you. Once you have the time decided on, think about how you will spend it. 

Now, in “Parks and Recreation,” “treat yo’ self” requires you to spend money. But, you don’t have to. It can be as simple as reading a book or watching a full season on Netflix. Sounds like a good idea, but don’t know how to start? Take a look at these ideas to plan your “treat yo’ self” day: 

  • A trip to the spa.
  • Buy something for yourself or your home. Think of an item that you have been wanting but couldn’t justify buying. Now is the time. 
  • Have a meal at your favorite restaurant.
  • Take a long bath and relax with a bath bomb or salts.
  • Spend time with your loved ones or friends in a fun way – who says the time has to be spent alone? After all, Tom and Donna celebrated the day with their friendship.
  • Take a nap. If you are like me, you sometimes feel guilty about taking a nap in the middle of the day. This is the perfect time to catch up on your sleep without judgment. 
  • Take a walk, bike ride or jog in a beloved spot.
  • Learn a new hobby or craft.
  • Finish something creative on your list that you have always wanted to do. 
  • Redecorate or reorganize a space, shelf, drawer, etc. in your home. 
  • Go see a movie, show or watch your favorite ones at home. 
  • Go through old photographs and mementos of your childhood.
  • Catch up with a long lost friend or family member.
  • Plan a road trip and travel. 
  • Journal and reflect. 
  • Retail therapy at your cherished shops. 
  • Bake a sweet treat. 
  • Put on a face mask and just relax.
  • Give yourself a manicure and pedicure. 
  • Throw a dance party for yourself or invite others to join.
  • Grab flowers for no reason and place them in a visible area in your home. 

Treating yourself is an important and valuable practice for all to experience. It is a day to be creative, joyful and celebrate yourself. Now that you have finished reading, pull out your calendar and schedule a “treat yo’ self” day. You can thank me and “Parks and Recreation” later.


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