One thing I have learned over the years working in mental health and in social work is that self-care is hard. It is hard to be kind to yourself, and yet so easy to tell others that they need to do this. Maybe it’s just me. I typically start the new year with this intention on being better about self-care and find myself chucking that out the window before the first week is over. Maybe it because I forgot what self-care can mean.
Self-care does not always mean going and getting a pedicure or a manicure (because we know COVID restrictions still have that sorely limited). It does not always mean the bubble bath or meditating. For each us we all have the various ways we need to care for ourselves. For my extroverted friends this may look different from us introverted people. Self-care is really about doing things that makes us happy and are life giving. For me, things that make me happy include things like doing solo or mostly solo physical activities (running, hiking, lifting weights). It also includes finding outlets for creativity (writing, creating graphics, video…). For me most activities that I would consider self-care are activities I do solo or maybe with 1 or 2 other people.
For others, self-care may have looked like going to a big concert with lots of friends, being a sporting event with a group of friends. Some of these things are not an option for everyone and so my extroverted friends this area is probably a bit more difficult for you in this season. Gathering and doing activities with groups of people are limited in most areas and so its finding a way to work with what you have. I would love to know how some of you have worked through some of this.
One goal I have for this month is to take 1 day and post once a week on the topic of self-care and what we are all doing to make this work. So as we get ready to jump back into the work week, what are we doing to give ourselves some self-care today?