We should all practice self-care, even if we don’t lead a life filled with crisis. I happen to bounce along from one crisis to another, and I really wish someone would have talked to me about self-care a long time ago. I’m 52 with a full head of gray hair, and it ain’t because of genetics. It’s because I didn’t properly take care of myself all these years.
I recently asked my oldest daughter if she feels she had a good childhood. I was pleased to hear her say she did, but I was surprised by what she added to it. She said the greatest lesson I’ve taught her is this:
Women need to be intentional to take care of themselves.
She added that she saw the toll life took on me, and how run down I was mentally and physically, and she decided that she would take better care of herself when she was an adult. And I can see she is doing that.
Here’s my own top 10 list for self-care, in no particular order.
- Get proper rest and practice good nutrition.
- Take time for yourself to exercise and recreate.
- Find hobbies you enjoy and do them.
- Don’t ever put off taking care of your own medical needs.
- Be intentional about de-stressing; take walks, practice meditation, talk to a safe friend, etc.
- Build a support team of safe friends and/or relatives who have the time and capacity to support you when you need it. Then ask them for support when you need it.
- Don’t do things for people that are capable of doing it for themselves. (Women in particular seem to take on other people’s responsibilities much too easily.)
- Journal it out — the good, the bad, and the ugly, and the fantastic stuff in your life.
- Be intentionally grateful every day, and for at least three things whether big or small.
- Be your own fairy godmother. You should do nice things for yourself, like give yourself a bouquet of flowers for example.
I haven’t listed my time with God. I’m a Believer. It helps to talk things out with Him. He listens and responds. I receive peace and comfort and can sort out my thoughts better when I spend time in my Bible or in conversation with my Maker. He is there for you, too.