The last few days have been a struggle. They have challenged me, changed me and made me feel rather miserable. But yesterday it hit me. I need to look after myself better. I want to be the best version of myself so that I can better help the people I love with their challenges and their struggles.
About a week ago I stumbled across series of posts about self-care that was schemed up by Mara Glatzel and Tamarisk Saunders-Davies called "The Perfectly Imperfect Project: Real Self-Care". Immediately bookmarked I read the new posts every day but what I was reading never sunk in. It was like I was seeing the words, but not reading and absorbing them. That was until yesterday when I could see myself falling towards a place that I am not comfortable being in (again) and I realised that I need to catch myself before I get there.
I re-read those articles like you wouldn't believe and last night I acted. I took a little time for me. To give me what I needed. I had a shower to rid myself of the day and used all of my "fancy occasion" products. I put on my favourite perfume, my cutest pyjamas and sat down with a glass of red and an amazing book (this one). I listened to this play list and I let myself relax. No netflix, no texting, no instagram, no twitter and certainly no ironing (yuck). Nothing.
And you know what...today I feel all the better for it.
But last night was only a small part of the bigger picture. My self care runs much deeper than a bit of pampering, a glass of wine and a good book. I have spent too much time over the last few years being shockingly unkind to myself and this has got to stop. It was like I suddenly realised that this self care shindig is a life long process. It's something that needs to be tended to and maintained all the time. The older I get, the easier it seems for me to simply forget that I need to look after myself in order to help others.
I am going to start eating better. I am going to listen to my body. I have decided to not keep my "fancy" products/clothes/shoes/bags/perfume/jewellery as just "fancy occasion" things; I am going to incorporate the special into my every day life. I am going to invest in some therapy. I am going to do more yoga. I am going to be more selfish about how I spend my time and who I spend it with. I am going to surround myself and invest myself only in people who are important to me. I am going to believe Ben when he tells me I am beautiful. I am going to check in more with how I am feeling. I am going to learn from people who inspire me.
I am going to be more present in my own life.
"In dealing with those who are undergoing great suffering, if you feel “burnout” setting in, if you feel demoralised and exhausted, it is best, for the sake of everyone, to withdraw and restore yourself. The point is to have a long-term perspective."
~ Dalai Lama
What does your self-care look like?