Self-care sounds so simple.
Definition according to Merriam-Webster Dictionary; care for oneself.
But are we actually taking care of ourselves? Giving ourselves REAL REST? We’re in a society where we’re always go GO GO and barely have enough time in a day to get done what we need to get done! And that’s usually just taking into account work. Factor in family time… housework… etc. Technology is wonderful but can be a curse at the same time. I mean yes it speeds up the way we do work and communicate… but then shouldn’t we have more time then for other things? YES! MORE WORK! We’re practically connected to technology 24/7. When do we actually get a break? For some, people like the fact that they stay busy. But eventually it slowly adds up and eventually you run out of gas and break either physically or emotionally. Think back to a time when you’ve had too much on your plate…. you probably weren’t sleeping enough or too well.. not eating well.. and then BAM, your body gives up and you’re sick! That’s basically your body telling you that you’ve run out of juice and you need a break! For others, it might affect them emotionally and they feel nothing will ever get done and there’s nobody that can help them and they get stuck in a downward spiral. We need to avoid it by taking care of ourselves early on! We need to prevent ourselves from getting into this “burnout” state. We want to avoid leading into self-destructive behaviors. And giving yourself the care that it needs, you need to know that YOU DESERVE IT!
BENEFITS of SELF-CARE
- Better productivity
- Improved resistance to disease
- Enhanced self-esteem
- Increased self-knowledge
- More to give
So it sounds pretty easy right? Just schedule some “me time” right? Not so much! Lots of people… and in my experience.. women feel “guilty” for wanting to even give themselves some time just for themselves. They feel guilty for taking a break from their everyday routine. Why??
Self-care is so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.
To many women, by saying “YES” to themselves, that means saying “no” to others. It’s saying NO to a friend. It’s saying NO to their children or to their husbands. It’s saying NO to their sister. But what they don’t realize, they are also saying NO to themselves. We need to understand that you shouldn’t feel guilty about wanting to just take some time to reset and just take a break. It’s not a sign of weakness. We should change our mindset and know that we deserve to take care of ourselves. In a society where we’re always busy, we have to break the mold and just say NO. And when you think about it anyways… if you wear yourself thin every single time to the point where your body gives out and you make yourself sick, you’ll eventually have to tell them NO anyways, but not by your choice. And most likely you’ll be out longer than expected which starts the vicious cycle of more stress to catch up on what you missed etc. That to me doesn’t sound like fun at all and can be avoided if you had just said YES to yourself! Make sense?
So OK…. you’re finally saying YES to yourself. No what?? What do we do?
“Your time is your time, and taking care of yourself means you can better care for others in the future.”
There are a few categories I wanted to touch on to give examples of what type of self-care activities you can partake in… but the essential question is, WHAT DO YOU LOVE TO DO?
So I never considered myself spiritual at all, but I had a misconception of what being spiritual actually meant! I thought it only had to do with religious beliefs so I just avoided all thoughts about me being spiritual. But when I learned that being spiritual can mean different things, I found that to me, being spiritual meant being at peace with myself. And how do I get into a spiritual state? For me that involves hiking and being outdoors and being one with nature. Other examples under spirituality can be meditation, going for a walk in nature, photography, journaling, art, music, and poetry. There are many other things that can be spiritual for others, but find something that speaks to you and brings you inner peace.
To many people, going to the gym causes them massive amounts of stress. Haha… I get it and it may not be for you. But it doesn’t have to be a gym. It can be something less crazy like just going for a walk! Even yoga counts! How about just taking a nap! Yes I said it… you can take a NAP! Sometimes our body needs rest and a nap will do wonders for your mind and body. Other examples under this category, try a new sport, walk your dog, riding your bike, or even dancing works! Again find what works for you and something that you actually enjoy!
This is probably the toughest category for many people because lots of people like keeping their emotions inside. They want to be strong around the people they are taking care of, but they forget, who’s taking care of them? Keeping your emotions bottled up inside is only going to hurt you more as it builds. The emotions you feel are neither “good” or “bad”, it’s normal! You’re only human. But if you accept them for what they are and just acknowledge that your emotions are real, that’s a good start! A great way for self-care ideas is journaling. This is a great outlet for others because it gets out the emotions and most people can be truthfully honest because the journal is just for their eyes. I suggest writing down your emotions before going to bed to get it off your mind and to prep for a more restful sleep. Other ideas for emotional self-care include making time with a friend or family member to just talk to, singing, allowing yourself to cry, or even seeing a therapist. For me, watching funny shows such as Friends allows me to just laugh and sometimes just crying it out helps. But it’s all about acknowledging your emotions and taking care of it head on.
For some, the social category is easy… but others, it can be a struggle! Sometimes in the hustle and bustle of every day busyness, some people lack having a social circle. This in itself can be stressful when you don’t have someone to go to when you’re in need of some type of human interaction. As social as I am, I’ve moved around quite a bit because of the military lifestyle, so I’m pretty familiar with feeling like I have no friends and that I’m alone. But a few things that I have done to get myself out there is joining social meetup groups! Yes, it may make you uncomfortable, but everyone there is there for the same reason. TO MEET PEOPLE! You get to meet people most likely with the same interests as you and it gets you out! Making friends is important and this can build lasting friendships. You just never know! So get out of your comfort zone and put yourself out there! Other self-care activities in the social category include but are not limited to, going out with your friends for dinner, calling a friend you haven’t talked to in a while, signing up for a class and learning something new…. etc. The options here are endless!
As you can see, there is nothing about taking care of yourself that you should feel guilty about! As you go into the weekend, think to yourself, have you taken care of yourself this week? If not, what are you waiting for!
Have a beautiful weekend!
Peace, Love, and Awesomeness,
If you need some help with balancing out your life and interested in learning how I can support you, fill out the form below for a FREE consultation. Would love to chat with you!