How often have you forgotten to take care of yourself first? Too often, probably!
It’s time to change this “sad” behavior where everyone else and everything else takes precedence over yourself. After all, how you take care care of yourself ultimately influences how you live your life, how to handle your emotional ups and downs, how you cope with the daily stress of everyday activities, and how you nurture and love yourself so that you grow and glow.
Self-care is the secret sauce that ensures you live the life you richly deserve!
Before I share the ONE most crucial tip to taking care of yourself, here are the four dimensions of self-care: Physical, Emotional, Psychological, and Spiritual.
4 dimensions of self-care
Not all of us are lucky enough to lead a balanced life with our four dimensions of self-care being taken care of in equal proportions. Worst still, some of us don’t even know if and when we’re off-balance. And that’s precisely why my ONE most crucial tip is this ...
★ Self-care starts with a self-care “audit”.
Instead of sharing loads of self-care tips and tools with you that may or may not apply to you, how about we all take a moment and examine our lives using the four dimensions and ask ourselves a few tough questions. Ready
Physical self-care — to live, move, and breathe.
Ask yourself this, “Are you getting the bare minimum of physical activity a week?” Studies show that our bodies benefit greatly from at least 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes per week of vigorous aerobic activity, or a combination of both spread throughout the week. Need inspiration? Takishima Mika is a fitness trainer at the age of 90!! No, she’s not superhuman. She started on her fitness journey when she was 65 and became a fitness instructor at 87.
Psychological self-care — to learn, think, and grow.
Ask yourself this. “Are you stimulating your brain enough every day?” Neuroscience tells us, “We'll lose it if we don’t use it,” and just using our brain to solve our work challenges or as part of a daily routine isn’t good enough. We must start exercising the parts of our brain we don’t normally use, e.g., if you write for a living, learn a different language and write in the new language even though you’re not proficient yet. Or if you’re a data analyst and look at numbers all day, start a blog and write! Perfection isn’t the aim — exercising a different part of your brain is.
Spiritual self-care — to connect with essence, purpose, and meaning.
Ask yourself this, “Are you living a purpose-driven life, defined by YOUR definition of purpose and meaning?“ Rushing through life or watching life rush by you isn’t why we are on this planet. That’s why spiritual self-care, often forgotten, is critical these days as humankind struggles a little. REFLECT on your life and what it means. Go online and use one of the many useful reflection worksheets you’ll find.
Emotional self-care — to love, care, be in a relationship with yourself and others.
Ask yourself this, “Do you truly love YOURSELF? Do you care enough for YOURSELF?” Without self-love, it’s virtually impossible to engage in a meaningful relationship with others, be it your co-workers, friends, or life partner.
★ Your Biggest Challenge
The last dimension of self-care, emotional self-care, is often the most difficult to help yourself of the four dimensions. The first three dimensions are manageable with a little will power and discipline, and goals to direct your efforts.
Emotional self-care, unfortunately, may prove a little too challenging, and that's why it's a little beyond us. The reasons why emotional self-care is out of reach is because of unresolved emotional scars caused by trauma, or an undefined fear, or even childhood events that have left deep marks on our unconscious mind that we're not even aware of.
★ Help yourself!
Whatever your reason for placing emotional self-care last on your priority list, I do suggest you speak to someone who can help. It could be a religious leader, a good friend (who listens more than talks), a coach, a counsellor, or a therapist. As a coach and hypnotherapist, I can certainly vouch for these practices and how useful and effective it is in helping you with your emotional self-care needs.
Do leave a comment below on how you have made self-care part of your life. What did you do? How did you do it? I’d love to hear from you!
Love, Laimei ♥