Recently I was asked by a friend to write a post on self-care. So here goes nothing!
When we think the words self-care, many times thoughts of spa’s, pedicures, maybe seeing a therapist comes to mind. While all of these things are good in their own way, I propose we break self-care down to basics a bit more.
At its core self-care means: actively taking action to preserve or improve one's own health.
The first thing to take note of is self-care is not about being selfish. Self-care is about improvement. Improvement of yourself ultimately helps everyone to come in contact with. When you take care of yourself it protects others: by strengthening your immune system, making you more positive during interpersonal interactions, creating a stress-free environment, etc.
The second point of self-care is that it’s an ACTION. To take care of yourself there must be motion. However, that motion counts no matter how small. Something as simple as taking three deep breaths whenever you think about it, counting three beautiful things you’ve seen today, sitting up in bed, and doing a single big stretch, these are easy and great first steps to self-care! Once you have self-care in mind you can build momentum to more drastic positive changes in your life, but always start small. When you start small self-care becomes easier and less prone to backfiring with feelings of guilt or anxiety. After all, who doesn’t have time to take three deep breaths?
The third thing to realize is self-care is a very personal, and necessary thing. For some self-care has to be a long drawn-out process to make them feel like themselves again. For others, it can be something quick and simple to get back on track. Whatever the case for you, make sure you set aside some time for self-care and watch your stress levels decline!
Fourth: it is okay to not know what type of self-care you need right now. Sometimes life throws everything at you and it’s hard to know how to help ourselves. The best thing to do when that happens is breathing, and actively try to take small steps toward a better you. Be it three deep breaths, maybe changing your hairstyle or clothing choices, maybe learning a new skill. Whatever comes this is your life journey and setting aside experimental self-care time is still valid!
In conclusion, take some time for yourself! Even if it’s only a few seconds or brief stolen moments, take that action and get your self-care ball rolling with whatever type of healthy self-care you feel drawn to.
I'm a woman who sees the world a bit differently. I've studied relationships, both through those around me, my own experiences & through traditional education on how human psychology affects our interpersonal connections for over ten years. This is my story, my advice, and my not so humble opinions.