Self-care is a non-negotiable aspect to any woman’s healing journey. Without self-care, I would probably be riddled with acne, overweight, depressed and constipated. Luckily, the time and effort I put into my body and mind keeps me feeling great, and keeps my PCOS symptoms at bay.
Sometimes when we think of self-care the following may come up:
- I feel guilty for taking time to myself when others need me
- I don’t have time or the cash
- It doesn’t work
- Everyone else in my life deserves relaxation and self-care but me- I have people to take care of!
- Self-care is selfish and I don’t want to be selfish
- I don’t fit in with the lithe yoginis and athletic gym rats
- I’m too fat/ugly/busy/tired/insert excuse here
Ok great, so you’ve got some feeling arising. She’s alive!! Fantastic.
Let’s dispel some excuses shall we?
- You’re not too broke. Self-care can be free, or you can invest a little in yourself
- If your tank is empty, how can you fill your loved ones up?
- Do you really have time for illness or injury that comes from being stressed and overworked?
- Most of the women attending local yoga studios and gyms are just like you! Some are tall, some are short. Some are overweight, some are ‘average’. Some are beginners, some are super advanced. And guess what- they’re there for THEMSELVES, not to judge you. Only you are judging you. Stop that!
- You’re not too tired. Self-care doesn’t require energy (depending on the activity)
- You’re not too busy. Self-care can be done in as little as 1 minute, or as long as you like!
Self-care is SO important. So why when we start to take care of ourselves, do we let it fall behind other ‘priorities’?
Simple answer: Because we don’t care about ourselves.
Sounds pretty sad laid out right there, doesn’t it?
The good news is that it’s simple + easy to create a consistent self-care routine. Follow my really simple advice for planning self-care below and reap the benefits of better mood, more energy to spend with your family, clothes that slip on + look bangin’, and of course pleasant menstrual cycles to name a few perks.
Simple Advice for Planning Self-Care
There is no end to the number of self-care activities. The best way to find out what you like is to TRY something. You don’t know how awesome (or fucking awful) it is until you do it.
#1: Choose Some Activities
Some of my favourites include:
- The three-part breath
- Reading a good book
- Taking a detox bath
- Going outside (hello sunshine + vitamin d!)
- Adult colouring books
- Grabbing a tea with a friend
- Doing a face mask or painting my toe nails
- Check out my Self-Care Pinterest board for even MORE ideas
#2: Schedule It In
You’ve got appointments, kids activities, work functions and other important shit in a calendar right? So why isn’t self-care on that calendar? It’s
just as even more important than everything else. Fill your cup to fill others.
Take a look at your schedule and take stock. Where do you have 2 minutes or 5 minutes for some self-care? What about a larger chunk of 20-30 minutes? Maybe even an hour or two on the weekend?
Pick your activities and schedule them in to your calendar everyday. Even if it’s a 5 minute activity.
Here’s a great example:
6:30am: Wake-up, do 2 minutes of the three-part breath
REST OF DAY
9:00pm: Relaxing bath with a cup of herbal tea
8:30am: Hubby/babysitter takes care of kids while you attend an in-studio gentle yoga class
1:00pm: After lunch, a 10-minute brisk walk around the block with the fam (bundle up if it’s cold but get out there anyway!)
REST OF DAY
You can see from this that different days may mean different self-care activities. That’s perfectly okay. The main thing is to put it in your calendar, and by doing that you’re telling yourself that YOU and self-care are a priority. And you will DO IT.
#3: Communicate to Friends and Family
Another super important aspect to self-care is to communicate your goals with the people you spend the most time with. Tell your hubby you need daily time to yourself to recharge (and feel more energetic for sex). Tell your kids you need mommy time in the tub 3x per week so you have energy to take them to their activities and care for them at home. Tell your coworkers that gabbing during your whole lunch hour is great, as long as 15 minutes of that is a brisk walk with them (or by yourself!).
Communicate, communicate, communicate. Verbalizing your goals is just another way to reaffirm them to yourself. You can do it!
#4: DO IT (Be Consistent)
How many times have I said ‘do it’ in this article? A lot. Because that’s what it really boils down to. You can make all the plans in the world and do hours and hours of research and ‘trying’, but if you don’t actually go and do it consistently, you won’t notice any results.
This is why I say to vary your activities day to day for what fits best in your life.
Schedule it in so you will do it.
Find activities you LOVE so you will do it.
Communicate your goals to others so you will do it.
Get your ass up and do it!