What is Self-Care?
Self-care can mean going to yoga, massage, flowers, a hot bath, or a girls night out. But when I talk about self-care, I am thinking of:
Simply allowing ourselves to be human.
The Ultimate Self Care derives from the deliberate intent to make space for this.
That means when I come home after a really long hard day and I'm exhausted to the bone - I ask my partner to take the kids for 20 minutes while I lie down for a rest; or if I'm not in the mood to go out after work, I decide to tell my friend "no thanks"; or I choose to take time alone to work on my project, even if that means less time with my family that day.
It can feel practically impossible to carve out that space when others are around: their needs usually trump ours. But an invisible barrier emerges from our own insidious voice. It warns us if we admit we need this space, then we are acknowledging: "I cannot do it all; I get worn out; I do need a break; my body needs restoration; I'm not always able to be ON".
In other words, I am simply human. And yet somehow I cannot let myself be human. Why not? The rational mind may say yes! But our powerful core beliefs deliver these messages instead:
- I'm weak
- I'm letting people down
- I'm not capable
- I'm not a good mom/spouse/partner/friend
- I'm not loving enough
- It's selfish
- It's not safe
However, if we can let ourselves be human and carve out space for these simple human needs, we may be surprised by the freedom, lightness, space that opens up inside of us. It is not sustainable to ignore ourselves - and ultimately we pay the price. Somewhere down the road.
The path to well-being begins when we notice and make space for ourselves.
To be tired. For our body to hurt. To need a quiet night. To have 10 minutes for a cup of tea.
Can you start with these little steps?
- When you notice that you feel tired, sit down for 5 minutes
- When you notice you feel stressed, listen to a soothing song with your earbuds
- Set your alarm 3 times a day, to stop, put your hand on your heart and take 3 deep breaths
These steps do not involve asking something of anyone else. We can start here - by noticing, taking a small step to soothe, comfort, decompress -- to ease your way into making space for yourself.
If you feel drawn to carving out space for yourself, I'm happy to explore that with you. Please give me a call at 503.224.6559.