Let us build our lives around self-care, not build self-care into our lives.
I went to a talk on self care at noon today and felt a little like a pink dot on a brown wall. I don't belong there.
It's encouraging to see that people care about self care.
It's not encouraging to see that so many people are having to schedule in time for it, some don't know how to even "do" it, or some who are stressed about trying to fit in their self care. It's become a "should". Oh great. Another must do that makes people feel like they aren't doing enough.
Our society has lost touch with its beating pulsing heart. We have lost touch with the way the thunder in us shakes as we walk the earth knowing that we are fully alive for our own reasons, not others. Not for sheer profit or fancy houses or cars.
We have lost touch with the way we feel when we sit under a waterfall laughing excitedly about life or when we sit atop a mountain letting tears roll from our eyes. We are forgetting that the very heartbeat of life is in our veins. That the magic already exists within us and we merely must go within to find it.
We can trust ourselves. We can trust that we know how to best take care of ourselves if we can merely listen.
I'm scared for the minds of urban entrepreneurs, mental health professionals, and the people involved in law enforcement. I'm scared of what burnout is doing to people in all kinds of stressful environments. I'm scared of the constant state of exhaustion and stress that everyone is in.
If we are the microcosm and the world is the macrocosm - and our nervous systems are under attack - what does that say for mama earth? Is it no wonder there are floods and hurricanes and war and disease?
I have spent so much time with a baby or "yogis" or people who live on a mountain this year that I forgot this population of urban stress exists.
The panel was saying take one thing out of this talk and implement it as a baby step. It takes 60 days to form a new habit. All I could think is that we need a major overhaul of the way people think first, then the system. Not one baby step every 60 days! We need big change. Disruptive change. I guess that's why I write sometimes, as a creative outlet for my feelings on this. If what I write doesn't resonate, fair enough, take what you want and leave the rest.
Many great ideas came out of the panel, don't get me wrong:
- Have strong boundaries
- Have non-negotiable's - dinner with your family, meditation time, walking the dog
- Plan and prep well - food, organization, etc so your mind can be at ease
- Live by routine so you can free your mind
- Don't live by routine so your mind can become fluid and adaptive
- Gather in community
- Create sacred spaces for you and family
- Be in nature
- Give back, volunteer
- Become self aware, begin tracking triggers and patterns
- Say NO to everything that is draining you. Say YES to everything that is relaxing and uplifting for you.
- Take responsibility for you. And only you.
- Get into the "Flow state" (runners high, mountain biking state)
- Or walk slowly through nature and notice all that's around you
However you do it - please do it!
Self care isn't a should, and a seminar doesn't really teach us to understand how to implement these things into our lives, but I understand that we have co-created a society that has brought it to this point.
Self care IS self preservation. The next time you feel triggered by something, lean in: "Have I eaten? Am I breathing?" It's something that's innately within us and we know because when we take time for it, it feels right, and we want to stay there. Our heart and guts tell us, 'this is right'. Let us remember who we are and act from that heart-centered place.
Let us build our lives around self-care, not build our self-care around our lives.