Self-care is so much more than just the actions you take or the routines you regularly practice. Self-care is a mindset.
Self-care means knowing and owning your self-worth. It’s knowing your needs are important and being tapped in to what those are.
Self-care means knowing your boundaries. Knowing when to say ‘no’ or when to say ‘hell yeah!’
Self-care is not just what you do. It’s what you think.
Self-care is something that comes easy for me. It took awhile to learn to honour my worth and to make self-care part of my routine but now, it’s like second nature.
At home I have so many tools available – I can have a bath, journal, go for a walk, head down to the beach, pop on a face mask, or read one of many books lining my book shelves. And as lovely as it is to have tools to use to practice self-care, you can practice self-care without using any of them.
I spent most of the past month in France, staying with Luke’s grandparents. I left most of my go-to self-care tools at home. I didn’t have my usual routines or habits to fall back on to. I had very limited time to myself (even less than I do being home alone with a baby).
It could have been far too easy to just forget about self-care for a few weeks. But I know if I did, I would quickly feel pretty rubbish. I wouldn’t feel like myself.
After practicing self-care for so long now, there was no way I could go three weeks without it.
When you’re on holidays there’s always more food. Or at least for me there is. More cheese, more coffee, more bread, and more dessert. Especially when you’re in France.
So while I was away I ate all of those delicious foods. But I was also mindful not to over-indulge and to stop when my body had enough. I also never felt guilty for eating a second piece of cake. That to me is self-care.
I loaded my plate with veggies and drank lots of water. That is also self-care.
I moved my body, gently. We went for afternoon strolls through town. That to me is self-care.
I went to bed far earlier than I normally would. For the first week of our trip I was tucked up in bed by 8.30 every night. Again, that to me is self-care.
I heard what my body needed (ok, it might not have needed that second piece of cake) and that’s what I gave it. Because that to me is a huge part of self-care.
I also spent much less time watching tv and scrolling through my phone. And while it wasn’t really intentional, it left me feeling clearer and lighter. And with that extra time I managed to read a whole book.
Now that we’re home I love having such easy access to all of my usual self-care tools again, but they’re certainly not necessities. Self-care can be practiced anytime, anywhere. It’s all in the mindset and your approach. Honour what your body or your mind need, and that is self-care in its simplest and purest essence.