This was first published back in Feb, but with Friday’s post, and my thoughts turning towards Self Love–it seemed like a great time to repost! Enjoy! XO RA
Loves! It’s the month of love, and treats, and showing people you care. I hope the first person on your list to pamper is yourself–not because self care is indulgent, but because there is no way to care for others if you are depleted. There’s a reason why the air stewards and stewardesses tell us to put on your own air mask first; if you’re not taking care of yourself, there is no way you can take care of others. And loves, this can be a hard time to take care of ourselves. I promised to never get policital (though I broke that promise here), and this is not meant to be a political post. However, it is irresponsible to ignore what’s happening. Many people are scared, disagree with the administration, with loved ones, are protesting, are mad at protesters’ and every day there seems to be something new happening and to be concerned about. How do we care for ourselves during this? On either side, how do we pursue what we think is important politically and stay sane? And personally, how do we take care of ourselves so that we can take care of our loved ones?
I have found this Medium article, this MTV one, this wired, this self care, and this article helpful in navigating self care, because unfortunately it’s not all wine and shoe shopping (those can be included though) and meditation (though that helps too). So what is self care? In my world, it means listening to your mind and body, giving yourself what you need, treating yourself like a loved one, and protecting yourself like a loved one. And loves, that’s a lot easier said than done. My list of tips below are by no means comprehensive, and if they don’t work for you, that’s ok. Self-care is by definition is inherently personal. However, these practices help me. I’d love to know how you practice!
Be OK Not Being OK
I’m a perfectionist. I have grand plans. I also have a hard time being vulnerable in front of people (and I know that’s weird for an actress, all I can say is that when I speak a writer’s words, I give myself permission). My point is, it can be hard to admit that you’re not ok. Or not 100%. That maybe you need a break–from social media to plans to vacations. No one is on or together all the time. So, it’s ok not to be ok, to take time to take care of yourself. Stay in with a movie, or a bath, or a book. To take a day off and rest. To get out of town and think about things. To not be strong all the time. The overall, encompassing thought of most self-care manuals or advice is to give yourself what you need, and for me the first step (and often most important) is recongnizing that I need something.
Get off social media, get outside, do yoga, meditate, unplug your phone; however it is that you turn off. For me, it’s getting offline and reading. My yoga, Pilates, and spinning practices are also my forms of meditation. (I’m working on building a meditation practice). All of this means that I give myself permission not to be involved every single minute. I don’t need to read every article, work all the time, or say yes to it all. I try to give myself an hour a day where I’m unreachable and doing something for me, yes this is more often than not my workout, but I find that when I give to myself, I can give to others.
Telling My Loved Ones What I Need
This is also hard if we’re conditioned to people please or we want to say yes. It can also be scary to be vulnerable, to admit that we’re depressed or we need help. However, from being honest about needing to stay in to asking for help, as scary as it can, I find that when I’m honest with my loved ones things go so much better. We’re all in this together so no matter what you need, be it time alone, a listening ear, a hug, there’s a great chance people understand, and want to help you.
Of course, if you find yourself not being able to care for yourself, professional help might be for you. And loves, I’m a fan of therapy, we all need support sometimes, let’s not make that a stigma. Find a therapist in your area here.
Take care of you. I’m off today taking care of me. Meet you back here tomorrow?
Wishing us all a week of radical self-love and amazing shoes! XO RA