The importance of self care has never more pronounced.
“You must secure your own oxygen before helping others with theirs,” is sound advice that applies to so many situations. Self-care is the nexus of a fulfilling life. We can help our community, family, business partners, etc. but without attending to our own mental health and physical well-being, we will eventually burn-out and no longer be able to help those relying on us.
Self-care comes in many forms, but there are a few things that can help us work on mental and physical welfare that I’ve found particularly productive.
My favorite techniques include meditation, exercise, writing, therapy, and reading. Even something as simple as adequate sleep and limiting screen-time can help too. It’s easier to do self-care now than ever before, but in our chaotic world it’s also easier than ever to forget and miss out on crucial opportunities.
Here are some excellent tools for that very important self care.
I am thrilled that meditation has gained so much popularity in recent years. Personally, it has helped me a great deal and is one of the most useful tools, which I’ve been relying on more and more.
There are a variety of guided programs, there’s freeform options, or just taking a minute to quietly do your own thing. The traditional stereotype of sitting meditation is great on its own, but there are a lot of other interesting methods to try such as walking meditation or lying meditation (though as busy as most of us are these days, this one makes it hard to stay awake at times!)
Writing and Journaling
Writing can serve as a meditative action if it helps center you. One of the key factors in all forms of meditation is to have the body align with the mind. Writing is a great way to do that.
I also use writing to get to the bottom of my feelings. Sometimes just sitting, thinking, and allowing myself to write down my thoughts is very helpful for uncovering my subconscious beliefs and feelings. It’s also an excellent method for reviewing your affirmations and desires.
Exercise, conversely, helps the body in a way that also relieves the mind. Like meditation, exercise can be done with guidance, alone, or entirely free-form. I recall seeing an exercise program a few years ago that used the lifting of everyday household objects to build strength and workout various different muscle groups. It does not have to be complicated.
I work out with Glenn Kohler (no relation) in the privacy of my own home using inexpensive and accessible tools like the stairs. I try to walk my dog for at least 15 minutes a day. Moving the body, particularly outside, releases dopamine and endorphins and other brain chemicals that make us happy and help relieve stress.
Similar to working with a trainer, a therapist is someone who has education and experience that can guide our mind to work out issues that may be stopping or bothering us. This commonly means working through our emotional hangups, but therapy can also help with business or creative goals.
There are many schools and types of therapy and even more practitioners each implementing their style in a different way. Coaching can be a kind of therapy at times, especially when it comes to interpersonal differences in strategy or office interactions.
Therapy can help alleviate anxiety or just give us an impartial outlet to evaluate any issues in our lives without our own biases or preconceived notions. If you have never tried it, or if you only tried it once, I encourage you to try again. After all, you wouldn’t quit exercising if you had 1 bad trainer.
Importance of Self-Care Summary
Self-care isn’t always an activity in and of itself. It can be as simple as augmenting our daily routine.
There are basic suggestions like taking time to start our day with gratitude and positive thoughts, getting enough sleep, eating a balanced diet, or just limiting screen-time. You need to find out what works best for you. For example, I struggle with arthritis and just reducing dairy and other inflammatory ingredients I eat every day can make a huge difference to how my body feels. With my reduced pain levels, I’m able to stay more focused and help my clients much more effectively.
We all know how hard it is trying to get through a workday on only a few hours sleep, but something like only sleeping 5 hours every night instead of 7 can have a long-term effect on how much we are able to focus and subsequently accomplish.
Reviewing daily routines for opportunities to improve or add healthy habits like sleep, exercise, and time to meditate or journal can bring enormous positive change in all aspects of our lives.
If you want to work with a coach who has education and experience in the field of utilizing techniques like self-care and many more aspects to increase productivity and take your business to the next level, schedule a call with me today.