Everyone is motivated by something; the “why” behind what we do. Often, when we’re so busy doing, we often neglect being… which is why self-care is a top motivating theme; a vital component of individual and corporate wellness.
Self-care is not selfish. Without it we have burnout, distraction, depression. With it, we flourish.
Acts of self-care can be small, simple, subtle… sometimes lavish, yes! And we get to decide, to balance the line between care and indulgence. Say… 6 a.m. yoga class vs. a 6-day yoga retreat on the beach. Each has its time and place as a mindful act with an eye toward the bigger picture, an understanding of what’s important in the long run, and acknowledging yourself as priority.
When we put so much on our “must get done” list, acknowledgement of the self can seem like a renegade act.
Self-care is honoring your commitment to you; a gesture of respect. Maybe self-care means taking time to laugh with a friend or setting a nice table before sitting down to a meal. Perhaps less glamorous, it may mean taking out the garbage, paying the bills, or going to bed early when you have a big event the next day instead of binge-watching your favorite show. Self-care is how we build the stamina to keep being available for others. Its knowing when that over-the-top unplanned indulgence is not the best choice, and bringing ourselves back to healthy nurturing moments.
De-stress within distress.
There is power in learning how to de-stress within distress; to be aware of the turbulence of life without being swept away by the storm.* Taking time to pause at the moment of a meltdown and bring yourself back from the edge with mindful breathing is a great way to reset. Establishing a practice of evaluating a situation gone sideways from an analytical rather than emotional perspective is very liberating. Intentionally working your way through distress can make you stronger and more competent.
Me? I work in 20-minute sprints, giving my all then giving myself a brief break to shift focus by gazing out the window or busting a move to a favorite tune. Similar to the Galloway Method of run walk run walk… when we take a break, we make it up over the long haul of time and distance.
Let’s give ourselves permission to be in it for the long haul; this game of life.
You! I’d like you to have “an idea in your pocket” for simple self-care. Understanding that part of self-care resides in self-awareness, a homework assignment I regularly recommend is to take time to acknowledge your own “AWESOME” – every day – by listing three of your winning qualities. Are you a good dancer? A compassionate listener? Do you rock at your job? Do you know how to fold a fitted sheet? Can you do a handstand or play the harmonica? Give credit where credit is due… start with you. Extra points for saying it out loud, because words matter, and our brains are always listening. Try positive self-talk for 21 days in a row, and see how increasingly enthusiastic your brain will be about your awesomeness.
You get it, you got it, go give you some self-care!
I’m Deena Ebbert, aka Propellergirl. Helping people get from where they are to where they want to be – creating communities and organizations where folks feel safe being fully engaged – is my “why”.
*Inspiration PROPS to Ted Roseen of YogaTedYoga