What does self-care mean for me as we move into 2018?
Reflecting on the past year...
Lately I've noticed that it doesn't take a whole lot for my perspective to shift. Sometimes it's simply a common message repeated in a novel way to the result of clarity. I plan to bring this pattern of ever-growing beliefs with me through to the new year. I'm working on consciously changing my definition of self-care next.
I like that my mind often changes based on a carousel of experiences I share with all of you.
First, let's recap.
A lot of things happened in 2017. I went full-time freelance as a copywriter. I completed a marketing program at the University of Calgary. Then a few months later, I became an employee again when I accepted a remote role with a social media marketing firm. These steps are turning out to be some of the best decisions I've ever made.
Prioritizing self-care with a full schedule.
There's two sides to every story.
I've always been a busy person. I often pile on too many things, then find myself wallowing in Kleenex and cold medicine because I spread myself too thin again—like right now.
My current cold actually inspired this post. I asked myself: What is self-care, and how can I be better at it?
For a while, I felt like self-care was attached to a price tag. Not only does it include taking time off work, but social media has made it seem like self-care includes buying something. Either a product—because, "Treat Yo'self," or a service because, "You deserve it!"
I'm not above these forms of self-care. I bought myself a new book before the holidays, and scheduled an appointment at a local spa. This type of self-care isn't feasible for everyone all the time though.
I plan to make 2018 the year of healthier perspectives. That includes redefining self-care for myself.
From now on, self-care will include so much more than spa days and shopping sprees. Instead, self-care will be defined by a long list of things that require little or no money to indulge.
Admire the bigger picture.
Financial growth falls under my new self-care umbrella. As my fiancé and I save for our wedding, and think about buying a home versus renting, financial growth has become a priority—which ties into my other methods of self-care.
It's okay to say no to going out on weekends. The FOMO is not real if you don't let it take over. Instead, I have been practicing saying yes to time recharging at home after a busy week. I've realized it's okay to prioritize myself, even if that means doing absolutely nothing sometimes.
It's also okay to work on the weekends, but only if you're working on something that lights you up. I get some of my best writing done on Saturday mornings before noon. There's no emails to answer. Just my keyboard and coffee. I've realized that these few hours of quiet work is also a form of self-care because I allow myself to get a head start on the week ahead—which leads to my next point.
Achievements make me feel good about myself. That's why working to reach my goals is a form of self-care as well.
At the same time, balance is necessary. Prioritizing organization leaves more room for self-care. If you feel like you're being torn in different directions and don't have time for yourself, you might just need a better day planner.
Appreciate the simple things.
The most successful people understand the that there's always time in your day to take a second for yourself. When I learned how to appreciate the quiet moments in each day, my days felt a little longer.
- Relaxing for a couple mindful minutes over your morning coffee.
- Scheduling workouts into your daily routine, just as you would an important meeting.
- Reading before bed instead of falling asleep to the blue glow of a screen.
- Sleeping in a bit on the weekend.
All of these small changes don't involve money. They are free, but they have the power to make our lives a little bit brighter. I'm not sure about you, but all I'm working for is a life that is bright and full of beautiful moments.
How do you define self-care?