Life is crazy busy, and we often put ourselves last on the priority list. It’s not our fault. A third of our days could be spent on work or taking care of our families, while another third we are sleeping. And I couldn’t even tell you what I did during the third slice of that 24-hour pie. Cooking? Cleaning? Showering? Reading? Sky-Diving?
Okay, maybe not sky-diving. I’d remember that.
So, after running errands yesterday, I had a decision to make — go home and do laundry or stop at Rita’s Water Ice for a treat. As if deciding for me, the car sped past the turnoff to my house and headed straight toward the nearest Rita’s. I had the mango gelati with vanilla custard. Delicious. Sometimes, it is the little things that make a big difference.
Yesterday was International Self-Care Day. It is purposely set on the 24th day of July (the seventh month of the year) to remind us to practice self-care 24 hours a day, seven days a week. According to this website, self-care is meant to “protect one’s happiness and well-being, especially during times of stress.” This year’s theme is “Resilience, Adaptability, and Thriving in Adversity.” That is quite a tall order, but not impossible. When I posted a question about practicing self-care on my Facebook page today, here are some of the ways my friends do it.
- Stop checking their email
- Turning off their phone
- Meeting up with a friend for a meal (or a gelati)
- Enjoying a nature walk
- Spending some time in therapy
- Immersing oneself in an activity they love, such as gardening, tennis, journaling, or krav maga.
- Saying no and setting boundaries
Practicing self-care is nothing to feel guilty about. We should embrace it and make sure it is an integral part of our lives. It helps us relieve stress, avoid burnout, and feel better. Some days, it’s about treating ourselves to a mango gelati. Other times, it can be a mani/pedi, some retail therapy, or a mental health day. The important thing is to give yourself permission to put yourself first — before doing the laundry.
What would you add to this list? Put your answer in the comments, and then do it. 🙂