Self-care for me means:
- Mindfulness. When I am loving myself, I pay attention to my thoughts, desires, emotions, and physical sensations as they arise, and I try not to judge anything. This is the same thing I'd do with a friend I dearly love. Pay attention. It does not look like me shuffling through my day worrying about the past or future, ignoring my body's sensations.
- Good food. My body craves nourishment from foods high in vitamins and nutrients. Sometimes, I just want my hunger to go away, so I cram horribly unhealthy foods into my body, thinking it will satisfy me. This usually leads to feelings of regret, unworthiness, and overall blah. Self-care looks like a ton of greens, sweet potatoes, chicken, and other foods that I enjoy that also give me healthy benefits.
- Creativity. I'm caring for myself when I schedule a few minutes each week to be creative, even if I feel like I'm being irresponsible by not spending that time doing housework or something else in my "busyness" trap. I spend a few minutes stitching some seams, counting cross-stitches, or just writing out a few words that come from my gut.
- Slowing down. It's so easy to forget about the amazing strides I've taken with fitness. Sometimes all I can think about are the fitspo models, who are often photoshopped and who have very different genes than I do. So I want to ramp up my workouts, dial up the intensity, and go all out in order to become the fittest woman on the planet. This usually leads to burnout or injury, which just starts me down a long road away from self-care. My body needs more time in slow, meditative motion.
My ideas of self-care are constantly evolving. Some days, self-care looks very stereotypical - I take a long bath, paint my toenails, and curl up with a good book and a kitty on my lap. Most days, however, no one can really see the effort that goes into slowly building up a sense of worth. Most of us have to put in a lot of work to feel valid enough to walk this earth with everyone else.