A Little Self Care for Easter?
Are you facing a whirl of visits this weekend or do the days stretch out deliciously (both literally and metaphorically) in front of you with no specific plans? Depending on your personality type you’ll have a preference one way or the other but I hope you’ve factored some aspects of self care into your time as well.
One of the suggestions for managing our stress levels is to support our own values behaviourally; to keep doing what we enjoy doing during times of stress, to help us recharge our batteries and keep positive aspects of our lives at the forefront of our minds. That might be going for a walk, run or bike ride, curling up on the sofa in front of a film, playing football in the park with the children or going for a nice meal. Those things are unique to all of us so only you know if you’re doing them, and so supporting your own values behaviourally. Sometimes it’s good to hold ourselves to account in that sense and ask ourselves the question ‘is the balance of self care in my life where it needs to be?’
I said to a friend in a text today, sometimes we have to put ourselves at the front of the queue, that is good self care. Supporting others is a great thing to do but it shouldn’t be to our own detriment. I put myself at the back of the queue for years, quite deliberately as it allowed me to avoid tackling my own ‘stuff’ and let me think I was doing good things by helping others. Which I was, but it shouldn’t have been at a detriment to me; my self esteem was on the floor. We all are important, we can all focus on our own health and wellbeing and we all have valid thoughts, worries, ideas and plans. Very few people have the trump card to say ‘my stuff is more important than yours’.
You are allowed to be at the front of the queue sometimes. Being self-less is a good quality, a strength, unless you overdo it. Then it can become a weakness and you’ll struggle to build your self esteem. Putting yourself first sometimes helps to build your confidence and self esteem, and makes you a good role model to others. It gives you a voice, which you might need to practice using, but with practice you can build your strength and gain confidence.
As a very wise friend said to me recently, self care and self indulgence are not the same thing. Self care is about supporting your self esteem and valuing yourself enough to put yourself at the front of the queue sometimes. So if you always say “oh, I don’t mind where we go” and leave the decision to someone else, maybe change that this weekend and say that you’d like to go somewhere specific. It doesn’t have to be somewhere new, it could be going back to an old favourite that’s been forgotten about for a while. You might need to do some research to support your decision, especially if the other person has gotten used to making the decisions just as much as you’ve been letting them. Change can come as a shock sometimes! But the look of surprise on people’s faces can be worth the effort!
So if you don’t have plans for the whole weekend, have a think about what good self care is for you, your partner, your family. For me, ‘should’ is a stupid word so try and balance the things you think you ‘should’ do this weekend with the things you actually want to. That’s good self care.
I’d love to hear what your self care choices are for the weekend. Please leave a comment if you’d like to share. My choices are around lie ins, walks, books, films, chocolate and hot crossed buns. Oh I do love Easter!
Take good care and have a wonderful Easter break.
Best wishes, Karen