Putting You on Your List

Too often, when it comes to ourselves, we focus on the negative.  What we’re doing wrong, what we shouldn’t have done, what we haven’t earned.  And, yet, we would never focus on the negative with other people in our life because we inherently know that negativity is unproductive and harmful. 

As individuals, we offer others so much and often fail to treat ourselves with the same dignity and respect.  It’s important for us to focus on doing something deliberate every day for our own self-care and nurturing.  By taking better care of ourselves, we enjoy life more, are better able to manage stress, have a more balanced approach to living and experiencing, and are better able to offer the world our talents and gifts.  

So, for today, I want you to commit to doing something for yourself.  Something that you might think about doing but then shove off the list in order to make way for someone else or some other task (like dishes, let’s say). 

What should you do?  Well, it is totally up to you because only you know what makes your heart sing.   That said, having a structure for incorporating something in your life can really be the difference between making it happen and just having it be an idea so here are some tools to help you navigate adding self-care to your daily life (yes, I actually really want you to do this past today, too). 

First, think about what makes you feel good and incorporate at least one of those things into your life today.  You might start by literally writing a list of everything that you enjoy doing and a list of what you wish you had more of in your life.  With those two lists, you have a great prescription to what you should add to your life.

Post your commitment to self-care and your list of things you enjoy doing it somewhere that you see it regularly.  If you are more visual, collage your goal and emphasis.   

Plan for it.  Every week, sit down on a day that’s good for you and plan what you will do each day to give yourself care. 

Add your daily self-care items to your to-do list if you enjoy the satisfaction of crossing something off when you are done.  It might be that you have read a chapter of a book on there, run, get 8 hours of sleep, get a pedicure, or call a friend on your list.

Keep a journal.  Track your self-care and how you feel during and after your activities. 

Taking deliberate care of ourselves is one of the hardest things to incorporate into our daily lives but it is one of the most valuable things we can do.  When you think you don’t have time for it, consider whether or not you have the time for the repercussions of not doing it or whether or not you can stomach what you are teaching your children if you don’t.  Many of us fear that we’re being selfish if we add ourselves to our focus.  The truth is that by adding a practice of self-care in our lives, we become dynamically empowered which affects everything else we do in really meaningful ways. 

Today, I’m going to enjoy the slightly cooler morning temperatures with a walk/run, getting a massage, getting my hair done, and reading for pleasure right before I turn out the light for bedtime.  What are you going to do for you today? 

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One response to “Putting You on Your List”

  1. Mid-Week Balance 18 August 2011

    […] to remind me of key truths in life and in self-care.  This week, she reminded us that we have to put ourselves on our to-do lists–that our health and well-being is what allows the rest of our work to get […]

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