Do you feel guilty when you focus on self-care or when you finally put your needs in front of others? I used to for a long time and even when I heard the comparison of putting our oxygen mask on first while in a plane before others, I still didn’t put myself first. Until I had twins as a single mother. I realized quite quickly while completely sleep deprived that I could only sustain taking care of them while not taking care of myself for so long — and it wasn’t that long at all. I could last about 6 days of getting 2 hours sleep a night until I couldn’t function at all (and couldn’t stop crying). In those days self-care was triage, but over time I learned to make it more of a daily practice. This allowed me to be a better parent and person. What I started doing, and encourage you to do, is start asking myself what I really needed to feed my body, mind, and spirit on a daily basis. I really listened to my inner wisdom, my true Self, to figure out ways that would give me the biggest benefit for the little time I had for myself. Ultimately, this helped me become more authentic and truer to myself. Self-care became a practice of self-awareness.
When we care for ourselves, we begin to care for others in a healthier and more effective way. Cheryl Richardson says “The practice of self-care forces us to make choices and decisions that honor and reflect the true nature of our soul. It forces us to be authentic.”
So, if you still feel guilty putting yourself first, remember this — Self-care is not selfish, self-centered, or overindulgent, self-care actually allows us to be our best self for ourselves, others and the world!
What are you going to do for yourself today?