It’s a term I wasn’t familiar with at first, but the concept is something we’ve probably all done at some point. It’s pretty simple, really.
In health care, self care is any necessary human regulatory function which is under individual control, deliberate and self-initiated
I define self care as taking out the time you need to rejuvenate. This year has been a hot mess and filled with a lot of change for me. And I had to actively implement rituals that would wake me up out of my fog. I spend most of my day online, which can be grand.
Until it’s not.
I often feel really overwhelmed and need to take it back to basics.
I’ve realized that self care can mean a lot of things. It’s taking a long bath and using your favourite bath salts. It’s treating yourself to a massage after payday. It’s getting your brows/nails/hair done because you want to feel yourself.
It’s also knowing when a situation will not serve you any longer or even ending a longtime friendship. I’ve come to see that self care is about taking time to rejuvenate from the daily stresses we come across.
Often I’m so exhausted from work, my weekends purely consist of me leaving my flat to grab my favourite cuppa coffee and getting right back into bed.
Most importantly, I have had to learn that taking care of yourself first allows you to have enough emotional capacity to deal with others. In the wake of last year, it is so empowering to know I’m actively pursuing things that serve me, that make me happy and enrich my own damn existence.
My fave ways to practice self-care include:
- Having a long bath
- Switching my phone off
- Watching my favourite series and eating my favourite snacks
- Taking a run or going for a swim
- Eating healthier
- Reading a book in the sun
- Painting my nails and using a facemask
- Having a lovely meal with friends.
- Planning my next tattoo
I used to believe that being a good friend meant being available and ready to listen to all the drama and invite chaos into my life because I wanted to help. I have a tendency to get worked up about things that don’t require my time or energy. In hindsight I could really skip along and leave it be without a care in the world.
Now I know that friends should know when you need to have your own space, and that it can be incredibly selfish to demand someone’s time constantly. Self care is protecting my energy, protecting my space and understanding that it’s okay to say NO and speak the hell up. In fact, you should exercise it more often.
So in the start of the new year and adopting better habits: take care of your damn self.
I know I have to.
But I hope we all do.