A curious concept with different definitions and descriptions.
Is it going for a massage or manicure?
Is it going to a yoga class?
Is it something you do when life feels a bit overwhelming, or when you’ve had a rough week at work?
Is Self-Care your philosophy, your way of life?
↪️ For many years, I thought self-care was something I treated myself to… something to do to “pick me up” when I felt down. I’d run myself a bubble bath or go for a facial once or twice a month and go full throttle at life, work and tending to other people in between these “self-care events”.
I’d do an annual yoga retreat, have an expensive haircut once every 4 months or write in my journal when I remembered (every few months).
Fast forward to today, and my definition of self-care has shifted.
SELF-CARE IS AN ESSENTIAL COMPONENT OF DAILY LIFE.
It is NOT an occasional treat.
What is self-care now?
🌀 Waking at sunrise to watch the sky change colour
🌀 Moving my body every morning – yoga, lift weights, have a walk, spin class
🌀 Practice the Pause daily – take 3-5 deep breaths in and out when I’m feeling overwhelmed
🌀 Listen to a podcast or music I enjoy everyday
🌀 Meditation daily (this might be 3 minutes a day!)
🌀 Moments of mindfulness
🌀 Booking time off from work every few weeks
🌀 Meal prepping my favourite breakfast (overnight cacao oats)
🌀 Asking my husband to take my daughter out so I can be alone
🌀 Saying no to social invitations or work projects
🌀 Choosing sleep over a night out
🌀 Connecting with people that make me feel uplifted
This list is not exhaustive, but you get the idea.
Ultimately, to me, self-care is taking deliberate daily steps that will:
- Create space within your body and mind to feel
- Help increase interoception (internal body awareness)
- Facilitate thought awareness
- Nourish your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being.
- SLOW you down - a necessity in this chaotic modern existence
And, yes, spa days still count!
But they’re only one part of the spectrum 😅
Self-care is important for everyone but especially so if you live with arthritis, chronic illness or any chronic pain. The more in tune you become with your body, the greater your ability to navigate flares of pain or fatigue.
Self care helps you to befriend your body when your body may have let you down in the past.
How do you practice self care?
I’d love to know in the comments below ⬇️
#yogadoctornikki #autoimmune #arthritiswarrior #lupuswarrior #spoonie #yogaforhealth #yogaforpain #selfcare