I am a huge proponent, supporter, and preacher of the benefits of self-care. The best investment you will ever make is in yourself, and taking the plunge into making self-care a priority will encourage change, growth, reflection and learning.
For myself, self-care was a difficult thing to work into my schedule. I told myself, I get manicures, splurge on take-out sometimes, and go to the gym. That’s self-care! In reality, I gave myself the pedicure because I thought I would be judged if they looked crappy, I got take-out because I stayed extra-late at work that night, I went to the gym because I wanted to be physically smaller.
Looking at it from this perspective, I noticed, not only, is this the opposite of self-care but damaging. I am doing these perceived self-care actions for others and my attempt to conform to society’s standards.
The key to self-care is acting intentionally. It is the awareness, time, curiosity, openness, kindness, and vulnerability you put into it.
At times in my journey of recovery, I’ve thought: Have I over indulged? Am I spending too much money on SoulCycle classes, weekly therapy sessions, delicious organic food, and daily coffees? Should I be doing something more productive with my time? The answer is NO.
You can’t pour from an empty glass. Self-care is necessary to replenish your mind, spirit, and body. Self-care allows you to move forward authentically, radiantly, gratefully, confidently, and wholeheartedly.
It can range from the smallest shift to something bigger. At the end of the day, it’s not even the action that really matters. It’s the shift that happens when you approach an action from a new and different perspective: being aware, in the present, and making the focus 100% about nurturing and recharging yourself.
I cannot begin to explain how self-care acts have helped my journey in the past six months. It’s transformed the way I carry myself and I find myself radiating a calm and balanced energy. I don’t get aggravated when people unexpectedly need something from me, and I am not as insecure when I’m out of my comfort zone.
Need ideas of how to start you self-care routine? Start here!
- Sight: go on a drive, visit the beach, go to a park, watch your favorite movie, reading, draw/adult coloring book,
- Movement: yoga, cycling, hike, walk with friends, make your bed, dance
- Smell: light candles, purchase flowers
- Hearing: listen to music, call a friend, audible book, podcast
- Touch: massage, face mask, knitting/cross stitch, bubble bath
- Taste: make tea, coffee, cook a nourishing meal
- Miscellaneous: take a nap, make a vision board, plan a trip, time alone, time with friends/family, act of kindness, deep belly breaths