Why self-care isn't just a wellness fad
The term 'self-love' and 'self-care' is thrown around like confetti these days and I know that it can feel like it’s a green juice, matcha latte type of cliché.
But honestly, the reason people harp on about it is because it really is crucial for health and happiness. If you’re running around putting everyone else’s needs first you’re going to end up with horrible burn out - and then you’re no good for anyone!
The problem with modern life is that it’s relentless.
From the moment we wake up to the moment we go to sleep there’s a bombardment of emails, Whatsapp notifications, Instagram, Twitter and 24-hour news alerts (which send signals in the brain we’re not safe). Not to mention the family dramas, dating woes, career stress on top of societal expectations to be exercising madly, eating impeccably and finding time for best friends, a sizzling sex life and time to take the bins out. Yikes! It’s exhausting.
There are two sides to our nervous system - ‘fight and flight’ and ‘rest and impair’, think of them as red and green. The red side is a life-saving necessity should we ever actually come across a tiger. However, our nifty nervous systems can’t differentiate from a tiger in the wild and modern-day social anxiety. Our nerves get a battering and leave us feeling frazzled and wrung out.
Over time, staying in the red can make us mentally and physically ill. When we’re in the green - we slow down, we breathe deeper, our digestive system revs up, our brains store memories better, we soften and we replenish our stores.
This is why, despite the world vying for our attention, it is ESSENTIAL to make time for yourself - it’s NOT selfish!
Often I hear from clients that they don’t have time for self-care, but who is more important in your life than you?
You are precious. Naff as that sounds, it's true. Everyone in your life who loves you wants you to be well and happy. Especially if you’re a care-giver, you cannot pour from an empty cup.
More importantly, when you take time out it sends a message to yourself that you are worthy of love, care, nourishment.
It increases our self-worth and when we feel we matter we’re able to take on the world better! We’re able to be a better friend, partner, colleague and a generally kinder, nicer human being.
I promise, the more you take time out for self-care, the easier to gets because it feels so good! Do what I do, plan it into your diary and make it non-negotiable.
Self-care doesn’t have to mean a massage and a bath (unless you want it to).
You guys are creative unicorns, let’s start thinking outside the box when it comes to showing ourselves some love. If you’re not sure - ask yourself the question:
- If I could more of ANYTHING, what would it be?
- What makes me smile?
- Where do I feel happiest?
- What would I eat to make me feel good?
- What colour lights me up?
- How do I unwind?
Don't just read those, have a proper think and make some notes. Then look through your diary and pencil in some time that you're going to set aside for yourself. And then start looking forward to it! If you need some inspiration check out this list below....
Here are some of my favourite ways to be a self-loving badass:
- Buy yourself flowers (I do this every week and I love it!)
- Buy some new knickers - you are worth nice undies!
- Go to the cinema in the middle of the day.
- Throw away (or smash up) your scales
- Breathe in and breathe out… for 5 minutes deeply.
- Call your best friend and laugh about something you’ve done
- Take a nap
- Eat something that nourishes your soul
- Take time out in nature
- Wear sequins
- Write a list of all the amazing things your body can do, show gratitude.
- Have a solo dance party and sing out your favourite song at the top of your lungs.
- Throw away any old clothes that make you feel depressed
- Watch old movies
- Stretch (SO. YUM)
- Write down 6 reasons you love yourself
- Get your hair done
- Give yourself some self-love… yes that kind.
- Hang out with a pet (proven stress relief)
- See your mistakes as valuable lessons
- Spend a little time day dreaming your ambitions aka JUST BE
- Wear something that makes you feel awesome
- Detox people from your life who make you feel less than amazing.
- Try and meditate even if you think you can’t (Check out Headspace)
- Ask for help if you need it. Nothing is more badass than this.
Tell me if you try any of these or what your favourite way to be a self-loving badass.