Updated: Dec 12, 2021
Taking Care of Ourselves Can Be A Task if This Behavior Was Never Modeled to Us in A Healthy Way.
Self Care is all the rage lately. Everyone is trying to step away from the toxicity that American daily life can easily suck us into (I'm sure other countries have this but I live in America & it's rough over here!). We are a very addicted society & we have developed the need to escape. People now have access to us 24/7 with the juggernaut of smart technology. Just 2 decades ago we couldn't access people so quickly. Now we can't put our phones down long enough to breathe deeply for a few minutes. There is such a thing as "text neck" now. This is pain in the neck from craning it to look at our phones for hours on end. With the pandemic, more people are becoming disconnected from human interaction in a bid to remain healthy. This can cause a serious disconnect, not only from others but ourselves as well.
Disconnecting From Others Disconnects Us From Self
Meaningful connection is just as important as solitude.
When we disconnect from others, we lose a critical component when it comes to our personal growth...mirroring. The concept of others mirroring back to us the truth of who we are & what we may need to heal is not new & it can really help us if we can use it in the correct way. You can read about the concept of mirroring here. Remember that the Law of Attraction speaks of energetic attraction, not you wanting something terrible to happen in your life. Have you ever looked at a workaholic & said jeez they don't take care of themselves? Have you ever wondered what makes someone who's addicted to something forego life sustaining food, social interaction, & do some of the most debasing things to themselves? Have you ever seen someone who will not speak up for themselves & you just can't fathom taking the things they take? All of these people have something in common that A LOT of us may be struggling with. They have a lack of care for themselves. Somewhere along the road of their lives they accepted the message that they were not important within the context of what they are neglecting in order to indulge in their addiction.
This even correlates with our constant desire to block out pain. As we've evolved as a species so too has the belief that we need to feel good all the time in order to have a fulfilled existence. I believe that a fulfilled existence is a balanced existence. We cannot appreciate the good without experiencing the bad & both of these terms are relative to the experience of the one who's experiencing them.
How Do We Care for Ourselves?
Getting comfortable with loving yourself can be difficult but you are worth it.
So how do we practice self care when we have no idea what that looks like? Keep it simple. One of the first steps is looking at the things you enjoy doing. Do you remember the simple things that make you feel good when you do them & don't deplete you? Those are the things that you can do to nurture your inner child & yourself. An example from my own experience is taking hot showers or long baths. These get me into a headspace where I can begin to have a conversation with that part of me that I have been neglecting. This usually leads to me pulling out a very beneficial tool that I hate using when I'm not taking care of myself...my journal. I begin by simply writing how I'm feeling in the moment. Try to stick with the most predominant feeling so as not to overwhelm yourself. Pick one & write about it from the full victim perspective. Talk about the hurt, the desire for revenge, what you really want to do instead of taking the "high" road. Get it out. Then ask yourself what you want to do about the feeling & listen. It may be the case that you don't want to do anything right now & that is ok. You may hear yourself say exactly what you need in that moment. Take time to listen & follow through if you can. Don't forget to have gratitude for yourself for trying to care for you. It takes practice but the very act of trying opens you up more so keep at it.
Find Out What Works for YOU!!!
There are a lot of ways to take care of ourselves. The most important factor in it all is that you do what works for you. You may not enjoy taking long baths. Punching a pillow may be what's therapeutic for you. Riding a bike might get your head clear enough to hear what you need. The point of it all is to find what works for you & then apply it. Doing things that don't bring you alive will only lead to you not sticking to them. Get curious about yourself & let it roll!