Self-Care: Love Yourself so You Can Love Your Life
You know the feeling too well: you’re worn out. The rope you’re dangling at the end of is frayed and about to snap. But you can’t stop. Your to-do list is longer than the beginnings of that novel you’ve been working on, and every second that ticks by is gone forever. STOP! You’re no good to anyone in this state—not to your boss, your best friends, your family, and most of all yourself. Here are a few tried-and true suggestions from ladies like you and me for taking good care of number one.
Let me share with you a proverb that is 100% true: a good rest is half the work. It might be crazy to think, but taking time to relax should be your #1 priority when the going gets tough and you’re pushing yourself to your limit. Our poor brains and bodies need to refresh, or else all of our mental gears get rusty. So take a moment to slow down, rest, and reorganize. Don’t think about what you need to do next. Focus on what you should be doing now. Treat yourself for your hard work and come back with a fresh new perspective on things.The effort you put into yourself will be worth it.
LAUGH OUT LOUD
Who says you can’t laugh the stress away? Laughter has been scientifically proven to be a great way to boosting your health, so stop squinting at your computer screen and let’s get into smiling shape.
- Read a book that has you grinning from ear to ear
- Watch a comedy playlist on your phone or computer. Hilarious scares or dancing cats should do the trick
- Make a scavenger list of wacky items you have to find in your house or neighborhood
LEARN AND SHARE
Imagine this: you are taking a quick 10 minute moment away from your desk. So much has been done in a short amount of time, and you are on that working high. You’re just itching to do something productive, but aren’t ready to take on another mountain of things to tackle just yet. So what’s a girl to do? I suggest learning and sharing something fun and productive for you! Take time out of your busy schedule to do or enjoy something you are going to love working on.
Plus, when you’re done, you should show others how much love and effort was put into your personal project. Sharing is caring is probably the oldest saying in the book, but it’s true when it comes to caring and sharing the fun you had. While the party-pooper known as the pandemic is still lingering around, there’s no reason why you can’t still be sharing. Video chat with a friend and show them how far along you are, or post a picture on Twitter or Instagram. Let your joyful project inspire others to do the same.
LET IT GO
For us working ladies, stress is a real buzzkiller when we’re in working mode. Just like the White Rabbit from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, it’s constantly reminding us that we are nowhere near our goal. Sounds like the worst motivator ever, right? Not to mention it feels like it can be so loud and persistent that it’s hard to think of anything else, ending up in a spiraling rabbit hole of nail biting and worrying about how to get out of this mess.
Before we completely lose our heads, we need to ask ourselves this: how do we get rid of it? You might not believe this, but it’s so simple… let it go. Yep! Don’t listen to that nagging voice at all. As Natalie Goldberg says, “Stress is an ignorant state. It believes that everything is an emergency state. Nothing is that important.” Well, except for you. You are much too important for all that worrying to hold you down when you need to breathe. There’s already a lot of work to do later, and this is your you time. Let the stress talk itself into the ground while you enjoy the peace and quiet. You deserve that peace and quiet.
Time to turn that brain off! Rest and relaxation means all of you need rest and relaxation, and your mind needs time to shake off your mental planner for a while before moving onto what’s next on the agenda. Sit down, put your feet up, and start simplifying your brain power.
- Listen to a song and let it carry you through the melody.
- Find peace while gardening.
- Take deep breaths in and out as you let your mind wander
The world can wait. You’re taking care of yourself, and that’s more essential than anything else. There is time to worry about your unfinished novel, your work schedule, and when your car needs to fill up on gas. There’s only one you, and she needs your attention.
Neuropsychiatrist David Amen, MD, posits that thoughts carry physical properties and that the properties of negative thoughts can be detrimental to your leading a healthy, happy life. To overturn these negative effects, he prescribes thinking more positively, maintaining that by doing so, you can change the way your brain works and in turn change your life for the better.
This guest post was authored by Becca Anderson
Becca comes from a long line of preachers and teachers from Ohio and Kentucky. The teacher side of her family led Becca to become a women’s studies scholar who writes The Blog of Awesome Women. An avid collector of meditations, prayers, and blessings, she helps run a “Gratitude and Grace Circle” that meets monthly at homes, churches, and bookstores. Becca Anderson credits her spiritual practice with helping in her recovery from cancer and wants to share this with anyone who is facing difficulty in their life. She is the author of Think Happy to Stay Happy, Real Life Mindfulness, and Every Day Thankful. Becca shares her inspirational writings and suggested acts of kindness at https://thedailyinspoblog.wordpress.com/.