Today I am working on one of my “30 Before 30” challenges which is to make and stick to a self care plan. Over the past year and a half or so I have come to realize how important self care is to maintaining overall health and prosperity. There are so many amazing benefits of having and sticking to a self care plan. It’s a total game changer. Even if you already feel happy and healthy, you should still make a self care plan. You will feel even better!
So, what exactly is “self-care”? It’s simple. Self care is the conscious and active nurturing of oneself.
This means you take or make time to care for yourself. I know it sounds ridiculously simple but so often it is easy to put personal needs on the back burner due to work, school, or family obligations.
It is also important to remember that each person’s self care plan will look different. I once went to a self care seminar where a woman raised her hand and asked the presenter “How am I supposed to create time for my favorite hobby when I don’t even have time to take a shower alone some nights?” This woman was a busy working mother of two children. The presenter pointed out that maybe for her a self care plan would include: “Take shower alone twice a week.”
The point is that you don’t have to list a bunch of extravagant activities in your self care plan. First start with basic personal needs. Do you make time each day to eat well? Do you make time to get enough sleep? Are you drinking enough water? These small changes will make a big difference. Once you have the basics worked into your routine you can add hobbies, Netflix marathons, and nights out.
Another practice that goes along with self-care is mindfulness. This practice will also help you enjoy each day and activity to the fullest. If you’re interested you should check out this article from TIME magazine that shows how practicing mindfulness can actually help your professional success. http://time.com/3670202/daily-mindfulness/
Ready to create your own self care plan?
I created some printable worksheets to get you started. I also included my completed self care plan as an example. Every few months or so I will re-evaluate this plan and see where changes need to be made.
Click on the box at the right hand corner of the document below to download my printable worksheets including: “My Self Care Brainstorming Sheet”, “My Complete Self Care Plan”, & “Self-Care Idea List.“
Recently I have been thinking about the things I am afraid to do. Or rather, goals that feel too difficult to achieve. I used to be such a risk taker. I would experiment and put my ideas out there confidently. Looking back I think I was young and didn’t care if someone criticized me. Now I often see risks as moves that could create new opportunities or destroy them. Then I came across this quote:
“In order to fly you have to create space in the open air so that your wings can really spread out. It’s like a parachute. They only work from a high altitude. To fly you have to begin taking risks. If you don’t want to, maybe the best thing is just to give up, and keep walking forever.”
― Jorge Bucay, Déjame que te cuente
Oh, Jorge you are so wise.
This quote speaks to me in so many ways but the analogy of “walking forever” hits
particularly sensitive nerve because I have a slight fear of running. I know. It does not make complete sense to me either. Especially since I have ran an couple outdoor 5Ks before and survived. They were slightly traumatic experiences for me on the inside but I just ran my little heart out and tried not to let the panic show on my face.
When I break it down there really is nothing to fear. I should just move my feet and…just..go. So I guess the movement part is not what I fear but the possible failure part. I know that every runner starts out slow and through practice becomes better. I am just not sure I would ever get much better. I also do not like running which makes me feel awful. I always feel I should like running because so many people I know love to run. They all rant about beating personal records and chasing that “runner’s high.” So I feel bad not loving to run. It makes me feel like I will never truly be in shape or healthy if I don’t learn to run well. A small part of me does want to enjoy running because it is good exercise and (from what I hear) good for emotional health. Don’t get me wrong I do run sometimes at the gym but it is always begrudgingly and I have yet to run farther than 3 miles at a time (with walk breaks).
The logical part of my brain tells me I have identified a clear problem I want to overcome so now I just need to come up with a solution.
Solution: Run? I guess there really isn’t any other way around it. Maybe if I back up and start from the very beginning I can get a better idea of where I am going wrong. So maybe I should run but with a plan. Start slow and make small goals. I am going to start by running 1/2 mile and then when I feel good emotionally and physically move up to 1 mile and so on. The biggest part of my goal is tied to how I feel emotionally when I run. I want to work towards eliminating my anxiety around running.
The journey begins now and hopefully this is just the beginning of reaching one of the many goals I have.
If anyone reading this is a runner I would love your advice/words I can say to myself when the panic hits. 😉
Thanks for being here!
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