Feeling stressed when you think of self care? Like you’re not able to do everything you “should,” that you’re falling behind? Well, isn’t that kind of backwards?
Self care should be about truly honoring our needs and it should come from a place of love and self respect, not obligation or pressure from society. When we treat self care like something we’re obligated to do, we set ourselves up for feeling bad if we can’t get around to that activity each day.
I felt this, full force, when I was trying to build up an exercise routine.
The world around us proclaims the importance of exercise. I can’t (and don’t want to) dismiss the validity behind this, but I also recognize that I was stressing myself out by feeling like I needed to work out every day. I ended up conflicted and confused, wondering if I was doing something wrong because I couldn’t sustain that intense of a routine. This suddenly started to make me feel bad about myself because I couldn’t keep up with my exercise regime. I then realized that I needed to try and find something else to see if this would help with my stress instead. My cousin told me to have a look at this anxiety spray to see if this could help, as apparently it did for her. And don’t get me wrong, I was considering this for a while, but then I found something else that had a profound effect on my life.
For reasons unrelated to exercise, I began to regularly practice yoga. Although this was a workout, that wasn’t my motivation behind participating in it. I was tending to another need and getting the wonderful benefit of exercise at the same time.
This idea—of listening to what we really need and taking action from there—is true self care. It’s not an obligation or a chore, it’s a gift we give ourselves.
When I made the decision to practice yoga, I was moved by wanting to find space within myself. I acted from this deeper desire and found exercise along the way.
Making a decision to listen to our real needs in each moment is self care
We are empowered when we nurture ourselves in this way. By listening to our needs and responding from this conscious place, we are taking charge of our life. When we treat self care like an obligation, listening to what society says is right (which isn’t always right for us) we’re disempowering ourselves.
What we need to do—individually and as a society—is switch our perspective about self care to one of truly nurturing ourselves. You can start by watching this episode of Arien Inspires. It’s all about how to truly tend to yourself, in the most beautiful way possible.
Related blog: How to Find the Best Coping Strategies for You
Do you already feel more empowered, more ready to truly listen to yourself and nurture your mind, body, and soul? I truly hope so. I hope this blog has inspired you to really listen to your individual needs and respect them, not feel obligated by society to do what others deem is “perfect self care.”
I’d absolutely love to hear your thoughts about this, so please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!
In what ways has the common over-done idea of self care in society influenced you?
Have you stressed out about self care?
Reflecting on this, what is one thing you plan to do to switch from this obligatory self care to true self nurturing?
You have the power to inspire others to nurture themselves by sharing this blog, too. Give it a simple click and post it on your favorite social media channel! You can be a part of the movement to reclaim self care as something empowering, instead of an obligation.
It’s important to nurture ourselves. Let today be a day for this—do something special for yourself, something you really want to do right now. Here’s to your new self care routine!