When I think of self care, so much comes to mind. I initially think of health, because that notion has been ingrained in our psyche since we were kids. Despite that constant reminder that we should eat right and exercise, many of us just don’t. Outside of that, I think of self care in terms of mental health. I’m not talking about something that we can medically diagnose… but more in terms of self awareness. We’ve been taught that a ‘mind is a terrible thing to waste’ — and simultaneously brainwashed to believe that we must be like or better than someone else to achieve personal happiness and success. The craziest part is that no one actually held a gun to our heads to think this way. We voluntarily led with the worst in us to drive out the best in us. Our fears about being ‘last’ or not striving to be the ‘best’ according to society has driven us to mentally, physically and spiritually starve ourselves from being ourselves.
Physically in terms of self care, I think women have a much stronger grasp on it. Even when I was a child, I noticed how well women took care of themselves. My mother would get off work, and no matter how tired she was, she’d still shower and moisturize. Then she’d take off her old nail polish, let them dry and put on another coat. It seemed like the ‘self care’ never ended. With the guys it was the exact opposite. Most guys I knew took the shower, but if there was lotion involved it just went on the hands and face. For me, women have been the leaders to create an entire generation of men who find value in taking care of their minds, bodies and souls beyond the basics.
Self Care can be expensive, but we have to look at the alternative. Many of us have lived a long life doing the bare minimum, from skin care to mental health and wellness. I feel like we rarely see value in something until it’s taken from us. So if we think of self care as a way to prolong and enhance our lives, perhaps we start to take it more seriously. Suddenly the cost becomes irrelevant. It’s an investment.
Sharing this idea can get tricky because my idea of self care may not the the same for someone else. To make everyone feel included, it think it’s nice to present the idea of self-care in a way that doesn’t seem mundane or tedious.
Personally, I eat healthy 5-6 days a week and indulge in my favorites for a day or two. I workout 3-4 days a week. I’m an entrepreneur, so sleeping is one thing I’ve learned to get more of, but it’s definitely something I can improve on. I read every day to enlighten, empower and motivate myself to be the best me. I think positive and write positive quotes and messages that I share with my friends in person and social media.
I never let the many positive things that happen in a day be overshadowed by the few negative things.
I’m human so of course I react to negative instances, but I have an exercise that I do every time I feel something negative is trying to steal my joy. I immediately think of 5 things that are positive in my life at that exact moment. (ie, I’m breathing, my two kids are healthy, I’m creative, I’m an entrepreneur, I can see, feel, touch, love and so much more.) After I run down the mighty list of all the positive things I have going, the negative ones seem trivial and often fade into the background.
I’m blessed every day that God allows me to wake up to see daylight, to feel the sun kiss my face, to hear the wind blow. There’s nothing like being a part of nature and being allowed to receive and give love. Every day, I wake up with a positive message in my spirit that I either log in my notebook or share with my friends on social media. Throughout the day, I am thankful for everyone in my life and my ability to laugh and create. Creativity is the oxygen my soul craves. The moment I’m allowed to press my thumbs onto my phone keypad and dictate the ideas only God can give me…I feel a kindred connection with my Creator…I feel like he speaks through me and I’m blessed to be one of many vessels he decides to inhabit. Once I developed a personal relationship with my God, I’ve never questioned if I mattered…I’m too busy creating and hustling to make God proud that he blessed me with these gifts. I woke up one day and realized that I am “Powered By Love” and this epiphany helped me realize my purpose is bigger than me and that truly makes me happy.