I think there is a lot of stigma around self-care… maybe it gets mixed up with being selfish but I think there is a huge difference between the two. Self Care is taking care of yourself because you realize that in order to put your best foot forward, take care of your family, do you job thoroughly, etc… you need to be taken care of. It is NOT doing something that drains you. Being aware of YOURSELF is key here, you need to know what makes you tick.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself before I share with you WHY self-care is my secret weapon. These will help you figure out what drives you and in turn help you figure out the best way to practice self care.
1. What Am I Passionate About? This could be your job, writing, volunteering, teaching, etc.
2. What Part Of My Life Feels The Most Overwhelming? For me, this is often the “motherhood/wife” duties and other times it’s my work that feels overwhelming. Why is it overwhelming? What would make it LESS overwhelming?
3. What Makes Me Feel Relaxed and Re-Charged? Reading, hot bath, or taking a nap? What helps you unwind (try to steer from alcohol) and what motivates you?
So you are getting a better feel for yourself and what you need to re-charge. I think self-care is most talked about within motherhood, but if you are not a mother, you are not excluded. Every human needs to practice self-care.
WHY SELF CARE IS MY SECRET WEAPON
When I start to get bogged down mentally (or physically!) that’s usually my body/mind telling me that I need to slow down or take a break. I need to stop what I’m doing, take a step back, and re-evaluate. Self-care has been a huge game changer for me in almost every aspect of my life. I know. The appointments, birthday parties, things to do, bills to pay, calls to make, deadlines, due dates, I KNOW. It get’s tedious and overwhelming. If I am totally fried, I can’t be a good partner or parent. If I am burned out I can’t write or do my job. When I get this way it usually involves a short fuse and getting frustrated WAY to easily. I’ll share with you some ways I practice self-care and maybe you can implement some of my tricks into your life, too!
Self care is all about learning how to balance your life.
Being busy is sometimes just a part of life but it doesn’t need to drain and dictate you!
HOW I PRACTICE SELF CARE
1.) BRAIN DUMP: I get all of my ideas, things to do, things I don’t want to do, plans, and put them on a piece of paper. It’s usually messy but getting it OUT of my brain is so freeing. I can usually plan my weeks/months out from there, too! So it’s really helpful to stay organized. (If you don’t follow Brighton Keller’ s blog or Instagram, you totally should. She is the queen of brain dumps and sharing more about self-care/improvement).
2.) SCHEDULING BREAKS: This might sound crazy to “schedule” a break, but I’m for serious. Schedule it. Put on the calendar that you are going to have Mexican food with a friend, a pedicure, or going to sit at Starbucks and read a book. I need things put on a calendar, so I know that if I have a break coming up I’ll stick to it! Breaks look different for everyone which is why it is good to learn about yourself and how you function best.
3.) TO DO + TO DON’T: I am a list maker. You name it and I probably have a list for it on my phone. I usually make a life of things that NEED to get done, things that I WANT to get done and things that I NEED to avoid (like planning too many things in one weekend). I am an introvert to my very core so “doing” too many things totally drains me. I need time to recoup and recharge… often. Figuring that out about myself has made a huge improvement to my mental health.
If you aren’t sure if you are caring for yourself properly, I really encourage you to dive in and learn more about yourself. Knowing that you can’t run on fumes is vital to living life and not being totally drained all of the time.
I’d love to hear about how you “take care of yourself” let me know in the comments!