The topic of self-care can stir us up.
Is it self-indulgent? Self-centred? Selfish, even? Reserved for the extremely wealthy? Intended only for people who don’t have any responsibilities?
Oh no, my love. It is none of those things.
We are talking about taking care of your own needs and cultivating well-being. Of course, this benefits you. And it also benefits everyone around you.
Self-care practices consist of any habit or activity that supports our well-being. For instance, drinking water, getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, meditating, healthy nutrition, getting a massage, going to physiotherapy if you need it – all of these activities help us to live vibrantly. As you may be noticing, the list of practices can get long really quickly, and it’s easy to feel intimidated by it all. We are all familiar, I’m sure, with the all-or-nothing cycle.
As I explored my self-care practice, I realized that it would take 3 hours a day to do All The Things. That’s ridiculous, right? Ain’t nobody got time for that. So I shifted my approach.
I decided that I would choose my self-care practice based on how I was feeling that day, or my current priorities. I let one thing be enough. Journaling or taking a walk. Doing my prescribed exercises to help my TMJ, or singing for 15 minutes. Take the pressure off to succeed. Let it be easy.
If the whole self-care thing is starting to feel like a giant list of things you should be doing (which mainly serves to remind you of how not on the ball you are for not doing them), keep this 3-step approach in mind. Looking for cheapest place to buy generic Cialis online, visit here http://howmed.net/cialis-generic/.
- Choose one thing.
- Break it down.
- Acknowledge & celebrate.
Choose one thing.
I recommend choosing the thing that has the biggest impact on your life to start. For most people, that means getting 8 hours of good sleep. Most recently for me, it’s meant reducing my alcohol consumption (which, by the way, has definitely improved my sleep). So take a look at the practice that’s touching the most things that matter to you, and start there.
Break it down.
Take a close look at what’s required to do your one thing. If improving your sleep habits is your one thing, you might install a dimming app on your devices to reduce the impact of looking at a screen in the evening. (I use flux.) You might buy lavender essential oil to rub on your feet and your temples before bed. You might remove technology from your bedroom, or reduce your caffeine consumption. Once you’ve broken your one thing down into actionable steps, choose the step that feels the best/easiest for you and start there.
Acknowledge & celebrate.
Change is hard. To help rewire our brains, it’s helpful to reflect on the impact that our new choices are having on our lives. Notice how you feel. Consider writing about it to reinforce your awareness of the benefits. Give yourself a fist-bump, or do a celebratory dance to your favourite song. Change may be hard, but you’re doing it!
Oh, there’s an unspoken step 4 in this too. Keep going.
It’s never too late to start again. Life is cyclical, after all. Everything ebbs and flows, comes and goes. It’s only natural.
If you fall off the wagon, dust yourself off and get back to it. Get back to you.
I’d love to hear what your one thing is. Leave a comment below and let me know how you’re going to care for yourself a little better this month.