Remember what they tell on a plane before you start your journey? “Put on your oxygen mask first and then put it on your children”. It is a clear message that if we can’t take care of ourselves, we won’t be able to take care of others; if we run out of oxygen we won’t be able to help anyone else. Self-care is not selfish, it is, in fact, a necessity.
What does it mean to take care of yourself: body, mind and soul? It means taking some of these steps:
- If you cannot find time for yourself, make it! Do not wait for the right time to appear. You are in charge of managing your time and we all have 24 hours a day. Being alone for a while doesn’t mean you are not a social person or you don’t love the people around you. It is a form of reconnecting to yourself, an opportunity to reflect and recharge. Make good friends with yourself and you will never feel lonely while being alone.
- Take good care of your body. Give it nutritious foods and plenty of water. Make that much-needed doctor appointment. Your health is important.
- Take a nap when you need rest. Put your phone on silent for a while. The world won’t collapse.
- Do things for your heart and soul. Treat yourself to a massage. Buy yourself something nice. Use those nice bed sheets instead of saving them for the guests. Wear that nice underwear you have been saving for a special occasion. You are worth it.
- Imagine you’re 70, looking back on your life. What do you want to remember? The fun you’ve had and the things you’ve learned or how well you were cleaning your house?
- Say NO to things you don’t want to do unless you really have to do them. It’s not your job to please everyone and your needs matter. Saying no is not selfish and it doesn’t mean you’re rejecting the other person. If the others get disappointed, it’s all about them and their own expectations, it’s never about you.
- Be clear on what you want and deserve. This is a form of self-respect and a way to set healthy boundaries between you and others.
- Stop striving for perfection. Perfection is just an illusion, it doesn’t exist. Learn how to be ok with good enough.
- Always do your best but understand that your best can be different from day to day. You’re not the same all the time. We all have good and bad days.
- Ask for help. Don’t pretend everything is fine when it isn’t. Honoring our struggles and feelings is part of being authentic and a form of self-care.
- Release yourself from the “do it all” mentality.
Are you blaming yourself for doing nothing, even during the times you really need to recharge your batteries? If so, where does this come from? In a society that values people through how well they do things in life (based on results, goals, and achievements), most of us have forgotten what it is like to just BE. Everyone is in a hurry, doing something or running somewhere. Shift your perspective! Doing nothing doesn’t necessarily mean you’re lazy. As long as it comes as a choice – your own choice – doing nothing is an action!
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- Posted by Sara Fabian
- On March 4, 2016