September celebrates Self-Care Awareness Month, which at first glance maybe seems like something you already know how to do. We encourage you to dig deeper and ask yourself the following questions to see if you truly are practicing self-care on a daily basis.
- What do I need today?
We’re talking basic needs to help fulfill your heart. Do you need alone time? Meditation? A long walk? A chat with friends? Whatever it may be, go do that thing. This may be hard to acknowledge at first, but with practice, you will start recognizing your needs more quickly.
- How is my body feeling?
Take a moment to assess your physical health. Is there pain or exhaustion? Consider what your body needs to function more fully and happily. This can include rest, stretching, massage, rest, yoga, a visit to the chiropractor and more rest. Oh, did we mention rest?! That’s a big one that tends to be forgotten.
- What is causing me stress today?
You would be surprised at the physical and mental toll that worry or stress can take on the body and mind. Sometimes, simply addressing it and determining an action plan can help relieve that constant anxiety. So much of the time, we hope worries resolve themselves. Face your stress and worries, and you will feel a weight lift off your shoulders.
- What will make me happy today, tomorrow, a month from now?
Be honest with yourself about your wants and needs. These can change from day-to-day and they can change over time, so be willing to make changes accordingly. If something isn’t fitting in your life, consider letting it go. If you are having trouble determining what makes you happy, that’s okay! Start by making a list. This may take a few weeks. Add to the list every time you think of something that brings you joy. Once you’ve made a solid list, start narrowing down the items that you want in your life on a regular basis.
Taking care of yourself takes effort. Often times it feels selfish, but let us assure you of one thing. It is never selfish to take care of yourself and love yourself first. So many of us put the needs of others first (yes, we’re looking at you moms). Start with baby steps by answering the questions above, and begin incorporating self-care into your daily life.