I lost 10 dollars the other day.
It was a Saturday afternoon. I stopped at a local store to get some items on my way to pick up my daughter to dance class. I made my purchase and asked for 10 dollars cash back. I literally saw the cashier hand the money to me. I grabbed the money and my belongings and hurried to the car for my 20 minute drive to the dance studio. It was a bit windy as I walked to the car. I remember the bag blowing in my hand with my small purchases and my receipt blowing out of my hand. I picked up the receipt, there were rewards points I didn’t want to lose. I got in the car reached in my wallet for the 10 dollars and it wasn’t there. I searched the car. I emptied my purse. No money. As I drove away feeling frustrated and bewildered I said out loud. I HAVE TO SLOW DOWN!
I am a wife and mother. Those words instinctively denote busyness. I can tell you my children’s schedule. I receive text reminders from the doctor’s office of upcoming appointments for my husband. I prepare meals that my family will like even if they are not always my favorite dish. I love caring for my family but somewhere along the way I lost caring for me.
I know my story is not unique. Maybe you are not a spouse or have children. Maybe you have a demanding career or you are a caregiver for your parents. Whatever your story, self care is critical to living a life in balance, maintaining proper health, and clear thinking. Here are some tips I am attempting to use to begin to care for me:
- Give yourself permission to care for you.
For a very long time I considered self care and selfishness to be one in the same. Nothing could be further from the truth. Self care acknowledges your humanity. We all require rest, relaxation, recreation, and taking the time to enjoy life. Even God rested on the seventh day. Consistently denying yourself what your body requires to function well can lead to unwanted emotional, physical, and mental consequences. In context, our bodies require food and water to survive. Would we consider it selfish to eat a meal or have a glass of water? If you answer no then it stands to reason that it cannot be selfish to give your body the rest it needs.
- Schedule time for you.
Prioritize and set a specific time to do something for yourself each week. What would you do if you had more time in a day? Whatever that item is, getting a manicure, taking a walk, reading a good book, spending quality time with someone you love, schedule it in your planner and avoid changing it. Taking the time to do what you love adds significant value to your quality of life.
- Just breathe
It is strange to think that one has to be reminded to breathe. If we don’t breathe we cease to exist. The breathing I am referring to is taking a moment to be mindful. When you feel life is moving too fast STOP take a moment breathe and slow down. Be mindful of your surroundings. Be mindful of your feelings. Be mindful of how your body feels. You are responsible for the speed in which you move.
Enjoy the peace and freedom of taking care of you.
By the way I never found the 10 dollars.
Author – Alicia Lurry