Self-care is a pretty hot topic at the moment. Some might think it’s just a trend and only for hipsters.
Well, ladies – it sure ain’t …
As women, we all do multiple roles during any given day. We may be a mum, daughter, significant other, sister, boss, co-worker, entrepreneur, carer, friend, among many things. The majority of us have been programmed to believe that all those roles have to come before our own needs.
Self-care is the deliberate act of centering ourselves and putting our needs at the forefront of our priority list.
Hmmm, as simple as that might sound, to try and practice this daily, can be very challenging.
Why ? As life, babies, toddlers, children, work etc demand A LOT of our attention.
Self-care involves engaging in activities or practices that help reduce or manage stress, aid in our overall health and well-being, increase our energy and satisfaction. Plus assist in taking care of our emotional, mental, and physical health. The latter being one that many women overlook…read my latest insta post on why you shouldn’t ignore lower back pain.
Now don’t worry I am not going to ask you to start mixing up green smoothies and to start chanting ommm !
Firstly – let’s start with reading one of my favourite poem’s Slow Down Mummy This is so beautiful and you don’t have to be a Mum to relate to it.
Self Care and Guilt
For years, people — women in particular — have talked about self-care through the angle of how important it is to take care of ourselves so that we are better able to take care of others in our lives. I’m sure you’ve heard those sentiments before, such as “you can’t take care of others if you don’t take care of yourself first” or “fill your cup up first, and then use the overflow to give to others.”
On the surface, these concepts all make sense. Focusing on our own self-care does allows us to be better equipped to serve others in our lives.
Below the surface, however, that idea is actually flawed. If we believe the theory according to which the purpose of self-care is to be better accustomed to take care of others, then we begin to view it solely as something we should allow ourselves in order to show up better for other people. Am I right ?
An Act of Survival
The reality is that prioritising self-care is not selfish, nor is it self-indulgent.
Self-care is not a luxury, it’s literally an act of survival.
It’s essential to your health and well-being, and as such, there is no guilt in that.
Without self care you simply can’t thrive. And by that I mean – you get cranky, tired, overwhelmed, exhausted, wired and your body suffers physically, mentally and spiritually.
So lovely lady – what are you going to do to help you thrive?
It doesn’t need to be complicated, nor consume most of your day …
Here are some of my favourite self-care rituals :
- Yoga on Sunday afternoons
- Infusing or wearing my favourite essential oils
- Journaling before I go to sleep. This helps me close down some of the many “tabs” open in my brain…plus makes me avoid additional screen time !
- I limit my coffee intake – shock / horror. Here is why.
- Short guided meditations – also before I go to sleep.
- A hot cup of tea on a Sunday morning in bed before I get up (thanks hubby)
- Spending time in the kitchen to make one of my favourite dishes. I find this a luxury when I am not rushing to feed the masses during the week!
- A beautiful no nasties face mask. Admittedly I do wear the face-mask when I read my daughter her night-time story #mulitasking – which she thinks is hilarious. But afterwards, I take the time to remove it, use a toner and nourish my face with a gorgeous moisturiser.
- I have also just discovered Audible books, here is my favourite…perfect for a tired Mummy. Get someone else with a beautiful voice to read as you drift off to sleep.
A reminder to prioritise yourself
If you find yourself faced with guilt when it comes to prioritising your self-care, remember the following things:
- Self-care is a not a luxury. It’s a necessity.
- Self-care is an act of survival, and there is no guilt or shame in surviving. Additionally, the goal is not only to survive, but also to THRIVE.
- Self-care is an act of self-compassion and empowerment.
It’s a great way to find inspiration for a little self care love.
P.S. Nourish yourself with our free guide to Pregnancy and Postnatal snacks.
Dahlas Fletcher is one of Australia’s most respected and successful certified and experienced Pregnancy and Female Fitness Trainers. Her goal is to help you be the happiest, most fabulous version of yourself, inside and out.