What on earth is self care and how do I do it right?
I find it absurd that I hadn’t even heard of the concept until I was at Uni studying counselling.
Today something clicked for me. I woke up with the intent to get an assignment started and almost finished, good start to the week, positive, ticking boxes, crossing things off lists…
However, I completed my tax return first. Usually a tedious task with a cheeky outcome as I feel I cheat the system by paying my car registration and insurance with my tax refund every year…
This year was different, I OWED the tax office money and started to panic. Not that I owed, that happens from time to time, but that I suddenly had to come up with the cash to pay to keep my car on the road… My car that gets me to my job, gets me to the stockfeed place and gets me to the coffee… Panic. I felt an anxiety attack coming on, not uncommon, and I snapped at my partner for asking me inane questions through text.
Then I thought of something… I thought, “wait a minute, stop, don’t let this take hold of you, practice what you preach, Cher, step back from it and really REALLY trust in your own saying that ‘the money always comes’. see what happens”… So I made some eggs, watched Dr Phil idly and did some washing. Completely switched off from my morning. Apologised to my partner (who promptly offered to cover my cars registration costs: ‘the money always comes’) and explained what had been going on.
I had really taken a step back from the whole situation. I had done NONE of my assignment, but it didn’t matter. I’d stopped a panic attack in its tracks, I’d intercepted my inner child from taking control of the situation and causing fights and getting nowhere, and I suddenly saw an opportunity to move another step forward in this halfway limbo that is the current setting of my journey.
I listed some dresses on ebay, that I should have let go of emotionally a long time ago. I waved goodbye to all the memories from each garment and thanked it for it’s place in my life. Gaining both money and space (physically AND energetically), and ticking some more boxes on an imaginary list that is always floating in my mind.
With all this extra space in my heart that listing the dresses had created, I had cleared a path to take another step forward…
I prepared my resume with career and post-graduate employment in mind, and as I typed out my qualifications and previous work experience; I realised that I really am going to be ok out there in the world, working towards the private practice dream, that I’ve actually achieved so much while I was trying to work out what I wanted to achieve. I realised that one day, (as I promised my partner when accepting his generous offer to spot my bills) I could be the breadwinner of the household and he could have a month or 2 off just to thank him for helping me out over the last 12 months of my student existence… And something amazing happened… I started applying for jobs.
“Real” jobs. Jobs that will take me eventually or immediately to a room with someone who needs my help, my emotional support and an energetic connection and empowerment.
And instead of being frightened; I was energised, excited and positive.
I could not have achieved any of this had I not taken a moment to stop and refuel my body, reset my mind and free my heart. Eggs on toast and Dr Phil may not seem like much good medicine, but today, it was exactly what I needed. That’s what self care is all about. Giving yourself what you need. I was lucky today, I could satiate my need to switch off, refuel and retreat a little, immediately. But recognising that you need something good for yourself is more than half the battle. Even if you have to wait til later that night, or tomorrow afternoon for the bath or the glass of wine or the whole family block of chocolate and your favourite movie; recognise that you need it, then make time to give it to yourself.
You are worth it.
Teach our sons and daughters about self care.
(posted with no proofread, sorry)