Let’s talk self-care! When someone mentions “self-care” many think about a spa day, going to the gym, or even eating right. The items mentioned previously can be referred to as self-care, but I think we should think a little deeper. Within the hyphenated word self-care is the word “self”, so whatever we choose to do for self-care should wholly be about ourselves, what makes us happy, relaxes us, or makes us perform better. In order to make sure that we are meeting “our” needs we must make sure that we know what “we” need. Knowing what “we” need involves self-awareness.
What is self-awareness? In order to get a better understanding of self-awareness we need to break it down into its two original words, self and awareness. We know that the word self refers to “you” as a person. The word awareness relates to consciousness, having knowledge, and being cognizant. If we put these two definitions together we come out with being conscious or having knowledge of oneself. So having the definition of self-awareness, which I am going to refer to as having knowledge of oneself, will help us to create a routine of self-care.
As mentioned earlier self-care is about what makes you a better person overall, which includes things that makes us happy, relaxes us, etc. So as you develop a self-care routine make sure that it includes whatever makes you happy. Things that make you happy could be reading a book for 30 minutes, journaling, taking an uninterrupted bath, soaking your feet, a spa day, a workout, sitting out in the sun, a manicure and pedicure, hanging with your tribe (those people who build you up), making your bed daily, spiritual meditation, nightly showers, or crafts, I mean it’s TRULY anything that makes you happy. So if we have knowledge about ourselves then we will know what or even who makes us a better person.
Why is self-care and self-awareness so important? Self-care is not only important for your physical being, but it is wonderful for your mental health as well. If you are someone who is super busy or you are responsible for others then you have to take care of yourself in order to give others the best of you. Think about a car, no matter the brand or the size of the engine, once it runs out of gas it is no good to ANYONE! The same goes for us, we may be super mom, the best entrepreneur, an excelling student, or the best working employee, but if we aren’t pouring gas back into ourselves we eventually stop running. Self-awareness is kinda like the gas gauge in our car. The gas gauge tells us when we are getting low on gas, so if we are conscious of ourselves then we can recognize when our “gas” is getting low and we will make time for self-care.
There is no one type of self-care. For example, my self-care routine includes a manicure and pedicure every three weeks, a nightly shower with my favorite music, meditation 3/week through the Calm app and the Headspace app, spiritual study 4/week, making my bed daily, exercise 3/week, weekly meal prep and foot soaks every Sunday. While writing my routine out, it seems like a lot but it’s not. This routine makes “ME” feel better mental, emotional, physically, and spiritually.
SELF-AWARENESS MAKES FOR THE BEST SELF-CARE!! Learn yourself, test out different types of self-care routines and see which routine is best for you. Show yourself compassion because getting in a good self-care routine takes time. Once you routinely fill yourself up with gas and possibly even PREMIUM gas you will be running well and will be able to continue supporting those who need you.
If you need assistance with creating a self-care routine check out this post from Gen Twenty, The Twenty-something’s Guide to Life.