I have been hearing a beautiful message repeated to me by so many of my students recently that I wanted to share. Many people have said, “I have realized it is important to spend time taking care of myself.” I am so happy when I hear this message and I only wish more people would recognize the importance of self-care.
So often we turn away from things that support our self-care because we have thoughts like: I have so much to get done; Such and such needs my help; I’ll start it tomorrow, because I need to get this done; I’m selfish if I spend time on myself versus my kids, parents, significant other, job, etc….you fill in the blank. Any of these reasons come up for you?
It is easy to find the explanations for putting off taking care of ourselves but let’s explore what happens when we do make ourselves a priority. You may find that you: improve your sleep; have increased energy; are more focused and productive; your relationships improve; challenges seem like speed bumps versus mountains; you have less aches and pains and your health improves in various ways.
Here are some of the comments I have had students share with me:
“I realize I can always come up with a number of things to put off taking care of myself, but when I make myself a priority I have better focus and energy to handle the other things afterward.”
“When I take care of myself I find that challenges don’t impact me as negatively as they used to. I am able to handle them with more ease.”
“I deserve to take care of myself and when I do, I am better prepared to support the others around me.”
And isn’t it true that frequently when things in life get stressful the first thing we sacrifice is our own self-care, at the time when it is most important? Maybe you have experienced when things grow busy you keep pushing through the responsibilities and you begin to feel drained, and instead of taking a break for self-care you keep pushing through until you finally end up getting sick. The body then forces you to take the time to stop and take care of yourself. Instead of having it forced on you, you have the ability to manage it.
Investing the time to take care of you is invaluable. Often people don’t recognize it until they give it a try, so I encourage you to identify a way to incorporate some self-care into your life and see how it impacts you. You may find you have more energy, focus, improved health and happiness as you take on all of life’s responsibilities.
After I wrote this blog I saw this video where Jada Pinkett Smith speaks with her daughter and mother. I thought the topic was so on point with this blog. Click below to see what wise words she had.