It is usually blatantly obvious when a self-care plan is in dire need of being present around here. With homeschooling, online work, keeping house, teaching, and a million other tiny things I told someone the other day,”I feel like I can’t keep up.” Life is beautiful, but life is also full.
That feeling is an eternal one, and I think inevitable, but it only becomes problematic when life is totally out of balance in the self-care department.
When I hear the words “self-care” they tend to have a selfish connotation.
But self-care is more than going out and getting a manicure or a break from the kids and responsibility.
Self-care is about filling your tank so that you can serve others the best way you can. You can’t overflow something that isn’t inside of you. Self-care does just this. It fills your happy tank. It might be quiet time, prayer, meditation, yoga, grounding, stretching, gardening, sipping your coffee nice and slow, having a moment to breath in and out deeply, take a scenic drive, conversation with good company, and on it goes.
There are five departments of self-care that I feel are so important to address and think about, especially if you’re feeling unbalanced, tired, stressed or just plain done with life.
Physical Self-Care – your physical self. Take a personal assessment of the way you feel outwardly. Are you tired? Feeling weak? Waking up tired? Are you feeling less confident than usual? Craving more sweets than usual? Do you feel you’ve had more breakouts or getting sick more easily? Consider this list and try implementing something to remedy it.
Water usually the most overlooked, yet easiest way to help our physical health. Try taking an old water or milk jug and drinking as much as you can in a day! I have never finished an entire gallon, but having it with me (yes I take it with me places!) makes me more conscious of my water intake. Happy hair and happy skin are a few benefits of this!
Find a routine that works for you and your world. It might be an intensive sessions of Crossfit or it might be staying at home letting a YouTube channel guide you through a workout There are so many quick workouts that you get for free on YouTube! Yoga, cardio, pilates, and more.
To touch on the sugar thing, I’ve noticed that my cravings for chocolate and sugar are irresistible when I’m sleep deprived. Its my body’s way of filling that need for energy! The key is to get plenty of rest so that my diet doesn’t suffer for it. Aside from sugar consider the color of your plate on a regular meal. The more colors, the better!
Put your phone down, shut down your laptop, ditch the to-do list, turn off the TV, and do yourself the best favor and catch some precious Zzzz’s. The older I get, the less I can afford to go on little sleep. It is actually quite sad, but truth nonetheless. This is a constant battle for me, since most of my work gets done after the sun goes down and the littles are sleeping.
Visit your local health food store or a contact nutritionist for some guidance on supplements that you might benefit from. A few supplements we take around here are zinc, soil-based probiotics, cod liver oil, vitamin C on sick days (everyone), and vitamin D in the winter
I highly encourage signing up for a beginner’s yoga class if for nothing else than to learn techniques on deep breathing. It is said that most people don’t use their full lung capacity and we suffer for it. Think about a time you were faced with an overwhelming and life-altering situation. Your body goes into auto-pilot and you start pulling for those deep breaths. Try closing your eyes, and breathing slowly and deeply for a few moments before you start your day, and see how relaxed you feel afterwards. Sitting still is the hardest part if you’re not used to this, but so worth it.
I’ll be talking more about the following parts of the full self-care plan over the next few days, so stay tuned.