One of the things I find myself talking the most about is "self care." It seems that we have created a culture that values reaching the finished line battered, bruised and exhausted. And we are proud of it.
On the opposite end of the spectrum are those people who have prided themselves on relaxing. They call it "chilling." We find all sorts of ways to fill up our time doing things that don't matter.
Self care is neither abuse or neglect.
My journey into self care began in 2010 when I became deathly ill. After years of bad habits, my body finally said, "Enough!" It was one of the most humbling experiences in my life. Up until then, I had prided myself on "getting it done." I sacrificed sleep. I sacrificed healthy eating. I sacrificed renewing downtime. My life was a constant "go."
Don't get me wrong. I am your typical Type A personality who loves to be busy. However, during my illness I came to an astounding revelation: we are human BEINGS not human DOINGS.
Be first. Do second.
In order to allow my body to heal, I had to discover new ways of being. Being lost in pain will change you.
What I know now that I did not know then is this: you cannot serve from an empty cup. Believe that.
So I began re-evaluating my daily priorities. I found all kinds of problems. I learned a lot. I want to share some of my learnings with you.
Prayer and meditation. One of the things that I did the most was sit in silent contemplation. I learned a lot about the chatter inside my head. And I didn't like what I heard. Most of us are wholly unaware of what we say to ourselves. I discovered some toxic thoughts that were keeping me from living the best version of myself.
Healthy eating. My mother preached a lot about drinking water when I was growing up. I think she was onto something (LOL). When I took inventory of what I was putting into my body and compared it to what a healthy body needs, I was astounded. Our bodies are amazing. They try so hard to keep us alive, sometimes against all odds and against our wills. I had so much to learn about food and nutrition that supports a healthy body. Water was only the beginning.
Renewal practices. Living full out with no spaces to recharge yourself will definitely lead to burnout. When I looked over my life, I began to realize that 2010 was only one of several burnout paths I had taken. I was always "on." If I was awake, I was doing. Of course, you are rewarded for such "work ethic." The problem is going at this pace without allowing yourself to recharge will make your life harder than it needs to be. I discovered that Sabbat is not just for the religious. I need it. My body needs it. My mind needs it. My spirit needs it.
These are just a few things that shifted me into the life that I have today. It was a lot of work. It was a lot of unlearning and relearning. It was a lot of letting go of what I thought was right.
Today, I want to challenge you to look deeply at your life and the status of your health. Do you like what you see? If you do not, I highly recommend that you begin NOW to make a change.
Your best life awaits you.
P.S. Browse my blog to find more information about some of the changes I made.