Making the World a Better Place With a Little Self-Care
When did self-care become a four letter word…OK, it’s two four-letter words, but you get my point. Do you ever feel ‘selfish’ when you want to put yourself first? Do you ever feel like you have to get ‘everything’ done before you can ‘squeeze’ in any self-care? No, it was just me? Well good for you. If, however, you find yourself saying yes to any of the above, this post is for you.
Self-care is different for everyone. What’s your definition? Do you have one? I find, unfortunately, too many people do not. How can that possibly be? How have we gotten to the point that we care more about all those pesky little things that ‘should’ be done vs. taking care of ourselves? How have we gotten so low on our own proverbial totem pole? It’s sad, I tell you and I think it’s time to do something about it. Now!
What are those screams I’m hearing? Those screams saying “Are you out of your flippin’ mind, lady?!? When is it even possible for me to squeeze in any free time for myself." Or maybe you’re of the mindset that it costs too much time and/or too much money. Or maybe you think it’s a luxury and you’re not deserving.
Let’s just take a deep breath. (See, I snuck in some self-care right there and it cost you nothing.) Take a few more. Shrug your shoulders a bit. Maybe roll your head.
When my kids were young, I used to nap. Nope, not a typo. I napped. I declared quiet time each day and they played quietly in their rooms or read or maybe even napped. I didn’t really care as long as they were quiet so I could nap. This was not an act of selfishness. It was an act of survival - for all of us. Because, if I’m being completely honest, if I didn’t nap, I wasn’t always pleasant. I couldn’t be my best self for my family and everyone else with whom I would interact. My family benefited from my napping. They might even tell you they benefited more than I did. It also helped me show up better in the world.
It’s like when you’re on an airplane and they instruct you to put on your oxygen mask before helping others. If you aren’t operating at your best, how are you showing up for others? Others meaning your family, your friends and everyone else in the world with whom you are interacting.
If this is feeling like a stretch, start small. Maybe just a few deep breaths and some shoulder shrugs each day. Then maybe multiple times a day. Seriously, we’re talking minutes here. You don’t need to clear your schedule or your to-do list before giving yourself a little TLC.
So, what’s keeping you from prioritizing your own well-being? If you’re not willing to do it for your own sake, then please, I beg you, do it for those around you. The world is counting on it.