Self-care, what does it mean to you?

I am notoriously known for taking on way too much and not taking any time for self-care. How can I? I have way too many things to get done and not enough hours in the day. My family and friends have encouraged me to take time to myself, in order to take care of myself. I was encouraged to fill my proverbial cup.

The truth is, I have been struggling to write this blog post for a long time because I was under the impression I needed to do something for self-care that seemed obvious. I thought I needed to take a break from my family and go out by myself or with friends. I thought I needed to go get my nails done, get a massage, have a glass of wine. I thought I needed to take time away from all the things I’ve taken on. And that stressed me out! I would, in fact, become more overwhelmed and burnt out by even thinking of planning something like this.

Recently, upon some self reflection, I realized my needs are different, because I’m an individual. So what do I need to fill my cup? What is my self-care? I have a few things.

Sitting outside with my family in the evenings, while my kids play, is powerful! It really helps me to center myself and find a new sense of being. This actually comes in varying forms. It can be in our neighborhood, watching all the neighbor kids play together and socializing with the adults. It can be with family, watching our kids interact with those they love the most. It can be camping, just our little family, connecting with nature and leaving our phones behind.

Another form of self-care I really need daily, is the relaxing time after the kids go to bed. This is time with my husband, laying in bed, watching TV. I don’t need hours of time, just a little time. You could say I’m a home-body. I do value being in our quiet place, enjoying this house we have made our home.

And the last thing. The piece of self-care that should have been a no-brainer, it is so obvious! Writing. I’ve said it before, I started blogging for me; because I love to write. Writing is a big outlet for me. And I am blessed to be able to have this.

I am glad I didn’t finish this blog post months ago like I’d originally intended. When trying to write about self-care, it felt forced. Do as I say, not as I do, was my slogan.

Instead, I encourage you to do as I did. Take time to self-reflect. What truly fills you back up with energy, motivation and intention? What reconnects you with all you love, giving your family, your children, the best pieces of you?

It can be anything! Anything that makes you feel whole. It can be big or small; take little time or a bunch of time. It can be a daily, weekly, or monthly thing.

And the thing that’s most powerful; it can change! We all have different seasons in our lives that require different things from us. Just because you need a certain type of self care in your life now, doesn’t mean it’ll be the thing you need a month or year from now. I used to love time out getting a pedicure, but in this season of my life, it’s just not the thing. And just because going to concerts isn’t where I want to be right now, doesn’t mean it won’t be in the future.

It’s time for you to know your journey is your own. Don’t let society tell you what you need to do for your own self-care. Instead, I implore you to look within. Then move forward with intention, and incorporate the thing(s) that really replenish you. You will thank yourself for it, and so will your family.

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