When did it become selfish to include self-care on your list of priorities? Why is it an acceptable option not to be included on your list at all? Why do we reward the person who is selfless and not see that at some point, that behavior could become a liability to their health. Every time you say yes to something asked of you by others, that replaces something that you need to do for your health, you are saying no to yourself. When I think about this concept that seems like common sense. I have to wonder why it is so difficult to carry out for so many. So I thought about it more.
So first I thought about what self-care is and the time commitment of that. Some of the areas that seemed most important to wellness were nutrition, physical activity, downtime/recreation, sleep, relationships/connection, spirituality, and financial stability. This list can vary to each individual. This list tends to be important to most- if you ask them yet so many of us struggle with balance and finding the time to cater to these essential needs.
Is it enough to know that you need something? Is it enough to really want it? What will convert motivation into action? I really had to get honest with this. When I first began to think about it I was thinking how hard it is to find 30 minutes in my 24 hour day to do exercise at times.
What came up was at least 15 reasons why I could not. Some were child related, spouse related, work related, to do lists related, crises related, Facebook related, E-mail related, physical state related and flat out sometimes I was just not in the mood related. The reasons I wanted to do it are I always feel better after exercise, I want to be healthy and it is good for me. Truthfully the first list was easier to tend to, and the second list was not as compelling. So what will flip the list and make self-care a priority?
What I found is the only difference is putting priority and commitment to it. When you commit, you do. Not because you want to but because it becomes a necessity/priority- not an option. Motivation is not always available to our necessity list. I am never motivated to do laundry but I certainly do not wish to walk around in dirty clothes. Putting our needs on the list are not optional, they are a necessity. When there is no other choice it is amazing- you find a way to fit it in.
So in the spirit of new beginnings and continued growth what is “your want” that you wish to convert to a “committed action”? Let’s stop waiting for the motivation to come, and create the motivation by just doing it.