How to practice effective Self-Care?
One of the most asked questions
People all over the world seek, strive and struggle to find happiness. The one thing I see more and more each day is the answer to the question, why am I not happy? The answers are shown through how so many of us have become invested in lives that aren't our own. We look out for our family, friends, care about the lollypop lady, which is all well and truly great, but whilst shedding all of this energy, people forget about the most important one of all. Themselves.
Do you lay a negative foundation for yourself?
We live in a world controlled by economy and politics, war and famine, authority and social status. People are too busy busting their balls to earn £100.00 because they think that the cash in their pocket is going to make them happy. Will it?
You've worked non-stop, been shouted at, are tired and hungry, but hey- you got your £100.00. That money will likely provide you with joy and fill the happiness hole inside you for about 5 minutes. Then you go back to feeling hungry, tired and frustrated, dreading the next day in which you have yo go back and do it all again.
We think that we have to 'push' and 'force' ourselves to do these things in order to achieve happiness, but 'pushing' and 'forcing' are such negative words. So explain to me how starting off with a negative mindset will lead to a positive outcome? You have already painted the baseline in disadvantageous thoughts and emotions and no matter how hard you try to mask it up, your initial viewpoint is always nestled in the background, so throughout the day, it will seep through and eventually bite you on the ass.
Happiness comes from simply 'doing'. There is no 'pushing' or 'forcing' or 'having to' Happiness doesn't have any expectations of you and when you experience pure happiness, it doesn't necessarily have to be an increase in emotion; it could also be a decrease or an absence of depleting emotions.
How to start laying a positive foundation
In order to create happiness for yourself, you need to take it right back to basics and do
some simple self-care.
Recognising when you are feeling down or vulnerable is so important as you are then able to attend to your needs.
Instead of forcing yourself to 'get over it' or 'push through', nurse yourself to better health by doing the things that you find relaxing. Have a hot shower, watch Netflix for a few hours, make
yourself the most ridiculous, over the top hot chocolate ever and simply be mindful about relaxing.
Notice your emotional level drop in intensity to a much more controlled manner. Observe what feeling relaxed is like for you when your mind quietens and you feel a little bit of joy from the simple pleasure you have allowed yourself.
Why do you not practise self-care or self-love?
There are many of us that dismiss self-care with reasons that normally involve having to look after other people before themselves.
Comments such as:
'I need to look after the kids'
'I would rather them be happy'
'If they are happy and well then so am I'
'I don't deserve it'
These people are generally at the top of the unhappy list because they have forgotten themselves. I was one of these people and I thought that I was being selfish if I didn't want somebody else to be happier than me. Have you ever had the same thought?
But do you know what is selfish?
Thinking that you don't matter or that others deserve more of your own love and attention than you do.
It's selfish because it's your responsibility to look after the body that houses your most precious gems, that holds your loved one's hand and allows you to run around the park with your kids.
It's your responsibility to care for the brain that allows you to speak to others, gives you the motivation to get up in the morning and the ability to read these very words. If you all of a sudden lost every ability that your body, mind and soul allow you to do, you would be diminishing the person that is loved, thought of and cared for by others.
Wouldn't your loved ones then think that you were being selfish?
If you don't give yourself your care and attention, aren't you just taking away joy in not only your loved one's life but also your own?
How to Self-Care?
Your body and mind need time to rejuvenate and recover from any negativity or a traumatic experience- big and small.
Learn what works best for you, what soothes you when you are feeling down or high rate.
Be gentle, kind and considerate with your day to day actions.
Don't beat yourself up as it only fuels the negativity into you.
Instead, talk to yourself as if you were talking to a scared child or a hurt friend.
If you can look after yourself, you are then able to give more to the people around you. You cannot take responsibility for others if you can't take responsibility for yourself first.