The Truth about Self-Care
Self-care was a loaded word for me.
When I heard the words ‘self-care’ I immediately thought of self-pampering. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love a massage (and I have one monthly) and I also look forward to my pedicure and can’t wait to sit in the massage chair at the nail salon.
To me, self-care was a luxury, a treat, or a reward. An occasional ‘something’ to look forward to. I reacted to self-care as if it were a four-letter word!
Luckily, I’m able to change my mind and when I tuned in and wondered why I always so tired, cranky, and unfulfilled, I found that I was an expert at putting myself last. And that made sense since all of my female role models were experts at giving to others but had no practice at giving themselves the time, space, or care they needed. I fell into the same trap.
I didn’t have a roadmap or blueprint on how to put myself first. Maybe you don’t either. We are pros at taking care of everyone else. We might be the ‘go-to’ person for anyone who needs advice, a favor, a shoulder to cry on, or troubleshooting. Don’t get me wrong – that’s awesome! But there’s more. You’re more.
Self-care requires checking in with yourself and asking yourself how you’re doing and what your body’s asking for. You can use self-care for anything from neutralizing anxiety to maintaining happiness on a daily basis. Self-care does not mean the same thing for everyone. My self-care practices might differ from yours and your own self-care practices could change over time.
Since self-care might be a neglected part of your life, now is a good time to take stock of how well you’re taking care of yourself. It is one of the most important things you can do for your health, happiness, relationships, and even your productivity. Self-care is the key step in being your best you.
You can think of self-care as feeding into your emotional, physical, psychological, and spiritual well-being. Eating a healthy meal? Self-care. Forgiveness work? Self-care. Discovering your purpose? Self-care. Consistency in a spiritual practice? Self-care.
As you can probably tell by now, self-care is everywhere!!!
So how can you tell if you need more self-care?
I want to say, “If you’re breathing, you need more self-care” but you can look at the list below and see if anything applies to you.
- You feel overwhelmed at work or home
- Your calendar is full
- Your to-do list never seems to get any shorter
- You have many people counting on you
- You could do with some more sleep
- You get lots of colds and coughs
- You don’t have time to go to the gym (this is supposing you want to go to the gym)
- You don’t have time for self-care (everyone else comes first)
You may even like the idea of self-care. Maybe you say to yourself, “I’ll do ______ (fill in the blank with something that’s just for you) when I have time.” In the meantime, you may feel like you are chasing your tail, are in survival mode, or just want to sit on the couch and zone out.
And speaking of zoning out, sometimes our compulsive behavior like overeating, drinking, or shopping is our unconscious way to ease our stress and overwhelm. Of course you know that’s not the long-term solution (although who doesn’t love chocolate, martinis, or Chicos? But I digress).
In my ALIGN Framework, self-care is part of the N Pillar (N stands for Nurture). And there’s more to ‘nurture’ than just self-care. Other topics ready and planned for this pillar are:
- Self-Esteem Support System
- Developing Delightful Rituals
- Soulful Spiritual Practices
- Pleaser’s Guide to Standing up for Yourself
- A Year of Self-Care Strategies
Self-care isn’t a reward or a luxury, and it’s certainly not selfish. Be kind to yourself and make sure that self-care is a non-negotiable part of your life from now on.
Say yes to yourself by engaging in some elegant (and guilt-free) self-care!
Hi, I’m Janet Kingsley and for nearly two decades, I’ve been guiding women back home to themselves – to self-love, self-value, and self-respect. I offer ideas and tools to support you in making a major transformation that will help you discover what’s really valuable in life and how to live in alignment with your true essence.
Bottom Line: I help you find what’s missing so you can reclaim your own value and worth in order to live your aligned life. I’m here to remind you that you’re the one you’ve always been waiting for and help you uncover the precious gem that you are.