Many of us were raised to believe that it is more important to take care of other people's needs before our own. Self-Care is a form of showing ourselves love, nourishment and compassion, and can look very different for each individual. How many of us run around with so many responsibilities, tasks and people to attend to that at the end of the day or week we feel depleted? Imagine that you are a large water pitcher. Water gets constantly poured out to our partners, friends, family, clients and other arenas and we end up running on empty. We must make a conscious priority to refill our water pitcher on a daily and weekly basis-or suffer the ramifications of exhaustion and burnout. Regular rituals of Self-Care are essential to keep ourselves going strong, and contrary to what we may have learned, is not a luxury, but something we all deserve.
Proper self-care is also essential for the health of our relationships. According to Fischer and McGrane, successful leaders in facilitating life-changing results in healthy relationships, the three components of a healthy relationship are: (1) You, (2) your partner, and (3) the relationship. Each need care and consideration, and need to be nurtured separately of each other. When any part is neglected or left out there is potential for trouble. In their book Journey Beyond Abuse, the authors share that when one partner is not healthy, communication becomes strained, decision making becomes difficult and equality in the relationship cannot be achieved. So I suggest two reasons for Self-Care: First and foremost, do it for Yourself, and also for the people you love.
In what ways do you anchor yourself at the start of each day and how do you de-stress at the end? What practices feel good to you and what new forms of Self-Care might you want to try? A good nugget to keep in mind is to choose rituals that involve the five senses. This might include listening to music, deep breathing, stretching, getting a massage, taking a shower or bath with a favorite scented wash, taking a yoga or movement class- in person or on video, or using an essential oil diffuser to pump relaxing scents into your environment. My current favorite is an oil called "Chill Pill" by Aura Cacia Co. Make your self-care practices like big, immovable boulders in your life! Solidrocks in your routine that you don't compromise or neglect. Like the Buddha said, "You can search the entire universe and not find a single being more worthy of love than You".