Self care… We preach it all the time to our kids, our friends and others in our lives…but how often do we take the time to step back and put ourselves first? When the last time we slowed down to re-charge our own batteries? How many of you are currently running on empty?
We’ve all heard the airline analogy. If you haven’t here it is: Anyone who has flown on a commercial airplane, before takeoff, has observed and listened to the flight attendant(s) described what to do in the event the cabin looses air pressure. If the oxygen masks fall from the ceiling they instruct you to put on your own oxygen mask first before trying to help a child or someone else else around you. The theory is that you can’t help someone until you’ve helped yourself. Well, this applies to all of us too. We cannot help our children, friends, colleagues or community unless we are taking care of ourselves first.
Not sure how to do this? Here are some suggestions:
- Take breaks throughout the day, take vacations when given the opportunity
- Attend continuing education workshops to better ourselves
- Attend consultation groups
- Setting boundaries with colleagues and employer.
- Be employed in a position that we enjoy the work we do
- Eat healthy meals and snacks
- Drink a lot of water
- Sleep 7-8 hrs a night
- Go to the doctor each year for an annual checkup
Appeal to the senses
- Sound – Listen to music that helps lift your mood or help you relax
- Touch – Wear clothes that feel comfortable and make you feel good
- Taste – Keep your favorite gum or mints on hand, small pieces of chocolate or favorite candy always help as well.
- Smell – Surround yourself with smells that make you feel energized and relaxed.
- Attend retreats
- Attend a place of worship or somewhere to connect with community
Now that you have some ideas, start planning different types of self care into your schedule. It’s easy to say, “I don’t have time,” or “that’s too expensive,” or “I don’t need that.” The reality is that you need to make the time, set aside funds and change your perspective to this is a necessity. It is important to take care of yourself to prevent burn out. Be intentional, plan it out. Self care can be easily ignored or overlooked – we have alot on our plate, we wear a lot of hats. However it’s vital to be able to slow down from a busy day so that we can tackle the next day!
So lets hear…how are YOU taking care of yourself? What are you incorporating into your daily schedule to take care of yourself? We always want our children to know that we delight in them…I challenge you to delight in yourself. To lift yourself up.