My first post needs to be about taking care of yourself. As a mother, wife, daughter, sister, professional, and so many other things, talking care of myself, helps me to take care of others. For many years, I struggled to feel like a good mother and wife. I neglected myself, and still do, but I’m trying to focus more on my health. I’m working on eating better, exercising, and doing things that make me happy.
I must say that I am not a girly girl. I don’t get up two hours early to put on makeup, but I recently got a haircut, so I am getting up and having to curl my hair. I have learned if I don’t take care of myself, physically and emotionally, I tend to snap at my family, get overwhelmed easily, and become less productive. When I’m not motivated, I am more likely to be sitting on the couch watching TV. I would like to get to the point where I’m working around the house, doing things with my family, and making us all get out and do things.
I have counseled people to take better care of themselves for so long, it’s time I take my own advice. I’m reading books that I enjoy, doing more to take care of my health, and getting enough sleep. I can see the difference in my attitude and my energy. As I worked with people in my office, I encouraged them to develop a plan that focuses on mind and body. Putting together a good self-care plan isn’t easy, and it takes a lot of thought. To begin, think about things that you already do to make yourself feel better. For some, that might be going to the gym. For others, that might be a nap. The idea is to think of things that you can do at home, that don’t cost anything, so you have quick options. Think of at least 5 things, including things that are quick and things that might take a bit longer. Some people build their lists to include a long bath, reading a good book, their favorite cup of tea, doing a puzzle, listening to music, dancing, or so many other things.
Once you have your 5 things for home, think of 2-3 things that you might want to plan. With the Country in financial crisis, work within your budget to plan something to look forward to, like a vacation. I plan vacations all the time, and although most get sidelined, it’s still nice to dream. The idea is not to put yourself in big debt to take a vacation. That just causes more stress and is not good for your self-care plan. Even if you are planning for a vacation you plan to take 3 years from now, just dream.
Now start your plan and see how it works. Ask yourself, is this helping and if so how? What do I need to do more of? If something is not working, try something else. Keep trying, and you will find a self-care plan that works for you, and don’t give up! This is simplistic for setting up a plan, but it’s a start, and it can help change the future and make things better. Just try!