My journey to self-care began when I realized how detrimental it was not to be focused on your wellbeing. In college it became apparent I couldn’t be one of those people that studied all night and then took a test on just a few hours of sleep - it wasn’t a skill I possessed! When walking the hills of WKU wasn’t enough, I knew when I needed to go to a yoga class with fellow dorm mates to burn off the stress of the mounting homework. Yes, I may have enjoyed talking to anyone that would listen (the beauty of being a radio DJ), but I also knew when I needed to recharge by myself.
Having interviewed three seasons of experts in either the field of self-care or those actively practicing it, I wanted to give you a quick recap of some of their suggestions to get you closer to a less-stressful, intuitive life.
Selfish Sunday - It doesn’t have to be Sunday, but set aside a day, an evening, or even an hour that you can focus on what you need each and every week. Has your iPhone notified you that you average four hours a day on it (guilty!)? If it were me (and it has been), I would put on a face mask and turn off the phone. Is your home office desk overflowing with paperwork? Take a few hours and knock it out. Yes, organizing your desk may not seem anything close to self-care, but I believe it is. Is it going to make you feel better and give you peace instead of anxiety when you walk in the room? That’s the goal!
Move Your Body - This is one that I am still working on, but consistently the successful people I have interviewed move their bodies on a regular basis. When you make it part of your routine it no longer becomes a daily debate of whether you should go or not, but instead, “when?” Don’t just count the health benefits associated with working out, but add to it the act of making a positive habit in your life that will fuel other positive behavior. I love the meme that says “You have just as many hours in the day as Beyonce.” It’s true - and if she can make it work, so can we! Dance party, anyone?
Determine Your Getaway - This is where we all start to feel guilty. If we have any extra time in the day we feel we should devote it to the important ones/things in our lives. That’s when we get burnout, and struggle with keeping all the balls we are juggling up in the air. What can make you turn off the “go, go, go” mentality we live by the majority of our lives? For some people this is a monthly massage, for others its binge watching Netflix on a rainy day. Some days it can just be sitting down and drinking water out of a big ole’ fancy wine glass. Whatever you need to lower your blood pressure, escape your constant thoughts and zone out is just what the doctor ordered.
Whatever you choose to do, make yourself a priority. It doesn’t happen naturally, because as humans we want to care for and put others first, however we are able to give more and be more for those around us when we have first taken care of ourselves.