Decompress the Stress Redefine Self-care


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Self-care is a trendy concept, but what is self-care? Is it sitting by the pool or getting a massage? 

Self-care is evaluating and doing things that result in being less stressed or more at peace within yourself. Self-care is self-awareness. Because you are unique, the care for yourself will look different than what someone else needs to do. It should include checking your mental and physical health and doing what your body and mind need. Here are some examples of ways to be more self-aware and care for yourself.

  1. A body scan is a great way to check in on yourself. Try asking yourself how your body feels in this position. Do it right now, even as you read this. How is the temperature of the room? Check-in on all your physical body parts, starting at your head. Mentally check your forehead, jaw, neck, and shoulders. Then check your arms and your hands. Think about your entire back, your chest, and your stomach. Move on to your hips, backside, legs, and feet. Can you do something right now to make your body feel better? It can be simple, like standing up, stretching, lying down, or drinking water. Whatever it is, do it now!
  2. Think about a time in your week that always feels stressful. Maybe it’s the morning rush to get out the door or the “Sunday scaries” on Sunday night when you realize what the week will be like. Whatever it is, think about what you could do now to care for your future self. It might be showering at night instead of in the morning or adding a reminder to your phone set for 10 am on Saturday when you know you’ll have time to do some prep.

Being disconnected from our bodies is easy, we go on auto-pilot and ignore and push through. Over time, this leads to becoming depleted and resentful about our obligations.

Sometimes self-care is about focusing on the basic foundations. During times of high stress and tight schedules, keep your attention on doing the basics instead of ignoring yourself. 

  • Eating on time, regularly, consistently
  • Taking your meds as prescribed
  • Sleeping enough hours to be "on" instead of barely functional
  • Sitting in your car for one minute, just breathing, not trying to multi-task
  • Listening to one song, and not doing anything other than being present with the music
  • Put on lotion that smells really nice on your hands
  • Drink one glass of water because you realize you haven't checked on yourself.

 


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