Self Care: Ideal VS Realistic

Self care is a basic necessity that should be made a daily priority

 

self-care

/ˌselfˈker/

noun

  1. the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one's own health.

    Not putting the needs of others first when your needs have yet to be met

  2. the practice of taking an active role in protecting one's own well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress.

    expressing oneself is an essential form of self-care

 
 

There’s a common misconception surrounding the practice of self care. It’s not all spa days, bubble baths, and a mani/pedi. Even so, there is more to this term than just breathing, practicing mindfulness, and being grateful. The truth is self care is such a personal thing. You may love going out on dates by yourself once a week. Maybe you take a nap when your kids are sleeping helps calm you. What I like to do won’t necessarily be what helps for you.

For me, I had envisioned self care as the perfect bath: candles, Lush bath melts, and lots of bubbles and YouTube. This sounded perfect, until I realized the bath melts I used clogged my old new to be tub, I didn’t like candles, and my phone almost got destroyed. With that being said, with my tail tucked in, I had to find my own true version of self care.

 
 
 



Self Care & personal battles


Self care is not a luxury, it is not a privilege-- it is a natural born right. You can’t help others if you can’t be there for yourself. What I started to notice a few months back was, for years I had let my needs slip away to lessen conflicts. Self care is about taking care of your needs--all of them! If you feel overwhelmed by a situation, you have a responsibility to yourself to  take a step back. Take that moment, or five. I have started to believe that expressing your needs is vital for both you and your relationships.


For me, I had envisioned self care as the perfect bath: candles, Lush bath melts, and lots of bubbles and YouTube. This sounded perfect, until I realized the bath melts I used clogged my old new to be tub, I didn’t like candles, and my phone almost got destroyed. With that being said, with my head tucked down, I had to find my own true version of self care.


REALISTIC SELF CARE IDEAS

  • Get up five minutes before everyone in your house

  • Wash up, even when it seems hard

  • Take a shower

  • Treat yourself to that “forbidden” treat

  • Write about the best part of your day/week

  • Read a book

  • Have a movie night in

  • Take a nice walk

  • Call a friend

  • Go to your favorite coffee shop

  • Find something fun you can do alone

  • Get some light exercise

  • Do something creative just for you

 

WHAT SELF CARE MEANS TO ME

 

Personally, I have had a love hate relationship with the term “self-care”. As someone who has struggled with mental illness for most of my life, putting myself first has always been an issue. With that being said, I always want to take care of myself, I just don’t know how all the time. It has taken me a long time to realize any little time I take for myself can be considered self care.

It has only been in the past two months where I created a tracker that I list one thing I did for myself today. I check in every evening to see what could be something I did just to recharge. These are usually simple things: talking to a friend, reading during my commute, eating a special meal; or, even simply breathing for a minute. 

What does self care mean to you?

I hope you could find something to take away from this today. Self care is about yourself. Do something nice today.

~ Hannah