Today we are learning about self-care. All about self-care. Specifically, I’m going to discuss the five foundational fundamentals and a three part plan. So what is self-care? I did a little research on the history of self-care, and it actually comes from the medical community. The World Health Organization initially defined self-care as the ability to promote and maintain health, prevent disease, and cope with illness. The last few years, the topic of self-care has become more common, and you’ve probably heard it. There’s a mainstream definition now about self-care being the self-initiated behavior that we choose to do to promote our health, wellbeing, and coping strategies. So in short, self-care is the way that we take care of ourselves. It’s the way that you take care of you, and why do we need to have self-care? Because if we don’t, then we will get sick. So I teach a lot about self-care. I coach a lot about self-care. I think a lot about self-care and talk about it. And I’ve narrowed it down to the five fundamentals that I believe are necessary foundations for self-care. And I’m gonna go over those with you now.
All right. Number one. I am born valuable. You are born valuable. We are all born valuable. We practice self-care because we take care of the things that are valuable to us. Self-care is the application of this idea that we are valuable.
Number two, I’m human. Humans have thoughts, feelings, needs. All humans need physical and emotional care. Self-care is the way that I take care of myself because I’m a human.
Three, I’m responsible for myself. This means that I am responsible for my emotional and for my physical needs. And when we take radical responsibility for our needs as humans, then we understand why my self-care is my responsibility.
Four. Here’s the secret to self-care. Self-care is all about connection. Self-care includes connecting to myself, to people I love and trust, and to something bigger than myself. I’m gonna get more into that when we talk about that three part plan. But for now, what I want you to understand around this foundational principle is that self-care is about checking in. It’s about tuning into ourselves. There’s a misconception out there that self-care is about checking out. For example, when I’ve had a really hard day and I watch Netflix in the evening for hours and hours, maybe sometimes it might even say, are you still watching? Really, what I’m doing then is checking out. That’s buffering. That’s not self care. Self-care is about checking in. It’s when I start to feel stressed or overwhelmed, then I stop and check in with myself. And I might say something like, what’s the matter love? What do you need right now? So self-care is about checking in. It’s not about checking out.
And number five, self-care is a regular practice of taking care of ourselves. It’s a daily practice, so when times get tough, when we’re stressed out, then we know that we need to double down on our self care. Those are the days when we double our efforts to take care of ourselves.
All right, so let’s talk a little bit more about how, how do we do it? So I created a self-care planning guide. I’m happy to share it with you, and it gives the three parts to a self-care plan. Remember, self-care is all about connection. So the first part is connecting to yourself, and those are things like connecting to your body, connecting to your thoughts, connecting to your feelings, your creativity. So some ways, some examples of ways that we can connect to your body might be through exercise, might be through It might be something like, meditation or breathing exercises, breath work. Ways that you can connect to your thoughts might be by journaling or doing some thought work with a coach. Might be meditation or affirmations. Some ways that you can connect to your feelings would also be things like journaling or coaching or identifying your feelings, processing through your feelings. Those emotions that you’re experiencing and some ways that you can connect to your creativity might be things like art or music or cooking or anything that is creative and everyone has creativity. So if you are like me, you may have told yourself in the past that you’re not creative, that’s not true. There are some ways that you are creative. I encourage you to explore that.
So the first part of your plan is connecting to yourself. The second part of your plan is connecting to people you love and trust. So this is connecting with your loved ones, and I encourage you to create a list of people that you love and trust. These are people that you have a reciprocal relationship with. They may or may not live in your home. They may or may not be your family members, and that’s okay. But all of us need a group of people that we love and trust. So I encourage you to jot down some names of who that is for you and think about how do you nurture your connections with these people that you love. Maybe that is you have a phone call once a week, or you go to lunch once a month, or you text message every day. But a regular practice for connecting with people that you love and trust, and people that you can count on to show up for you as well.
All right. The third part to your plan is connecting with something bigger than yourself. So that might be a higher power. It might be a higher purpose. Where I live in Colorado sometimes that’s nature for people in my community. It could just be a community that you belong to. It could be like a community service that you support. We all need a sense of belonging, and so connecting to something bigger than ourselves gives us that sense of belonging. So those are the three parts; connect to yourself, connect to your loved ones, connect to something bigger than yourself.
All right, so I’m gonna go through some frequently asked questions. I get a lot of FAQs and I wrote down a few of those that I think you may be wondering right now. All right. The first question I get a lot is what counts? What counts for self-care? And the answer is whatever brings more connection. For example, self-care for me might be I’m gonna get my chores done cuz I can connect more of my thoughts and feelings when I’m in a clean living environment. Self-care for you might be, I’m gonna sit and rest and give myself permission not to do my chores today, and that’s okay. Another example might be, sometimes I might wanna stay home and spend some time alone for self-care. Maybe I’m writing in my journal or resting. And then sometimes I might wanna go out with my friends for self-care. So as you can see, your self-care is gonna change from day to day or time to time, or phase and seasons of life for you. And self-care for me is going to be different than it is for you, and that’s okay. Because it’s whatever brings me connection. The good news is that you get to decide what self-care is best for you, and as you practice self-care over time you will develop more intrapersonal knowledge and you’ll know what helps you and what doesn’t.
All right. Second question I get asked a lot is, what do I do if I don’t have time for self care? Ain’t nobody got time for that. So busyness. Busyness is a struggle for lots of us. If you want help overcoming busyness, I encourage you to schedule a call with me. That’s something I can help you with. So sign up for a free call. But I do wanna answer this. So here’s my tip. Take an inventory of what you’re already doing and simply shift your intention, for example, If you have a regular habit of getting up and walking every day, maybe you take a break during your work day and go for a walk. Maybe you have a, a dog that you like to walk, but walking is already a part of your daily routine. Here’s what you’re gonna do. Go on your walk and shift your intention. Maybe you’re walking to connect with your body. Maybe you’re walking to connect with a person or a pet. Maybe you’re walking to connect with God or with nature. Shifting that intention can make it be for the purpose of self-care.
Another example is if you look at your to-do list and you’ve got, I need to return a phone call to this person and write an email to this person, and you already have that on your to-do list, you could just take a moment and shift your intention. I want to connect with this person, or I want to be part of this community. Do you see the difference?
Okay, the last question I wanna answer is, what does self-care have to do with boundaries? I love this question. So what self-care has to do with boundaries is they are for the same reason. The reason why we practice self-care is we value ourselves, and the reason why we practice boundaries is because we value ourselves, because people are valuable. The other thing that self-care and boundaries have in common is they both get the same result. Self-care is about connection. And boundaries is also about connection. When boundaries are done correctly, they leave us more connected. Just like self-care when done correctly, leaves us more connected to ourselves and to the people we love and trust, and to a higher power, higher purpose, something bigger than ourself. The other shared result of self-care and boundaries is that self-care keeps us from burning out the same way that boundaries keep us from burning out. So boundaries and self-care both are for sustainability. The last thing that boundaries have to do with self-care is that boundaries are a form of self-care. When we’re deciding what we’re going to participate in and what we’re not gonna participate in, we’re deciding our boundaries. We’re setting our boundaries. We’re upholding our boundaries. We are practicing self-care. So go out there and take care of yourselves because you’re valuable.