Sometimes when I talk about self-care I see guilt show up on people’s faces. And then come all the “shoulds.”
“Yeah I really should be exercising.”
“I shouldn’t eat fast food as often as I do.”
“I know, I really should go on a vacation.”
So let’s take a different approach today. What are you already doing right? What could you build on? I’ll get us started. Lately I’ve been feeling frustrated with not exercising like I used to. So while I do want to get back on that wagon, I need to remind myself that I do have an app on my phone that counts my steps. Apparently 10,000 steps is a recommended daily goal, and I seem to average that, being a New Yorker. I also make sure I reach 10,000 on days I’ve been a little more stagnant. Also I take a multivitamin every day (full disclosure it’s the gummy kind, I can’t STAND swallowing large stinky pills). I keep my dentists appointments (have one next week) even though I HATE going, so that my teeth won’t rot out of my head. I wear sunscreen. This weekend I bought myself flowers at the bodega for a meager $7.99. This is just a start, and you’ll notice these aren’t necessarily massive things but they still count! Take a moment to appreciate and acknowledge where you are killing it in the self-care department, even if you hadn’t really noticed.
Additionally, we all have areas where we could improve our self-care rituals. Chances are you take a shower regularly, but how often do you luxuriate in it? Allow yourself a few extra minutes, get some fancy soap, light a candle, make something you already do special. My friend went to Paris and gave me the gift of some fancy fruit jams. I got in the habit of saving them for the weekend when I knew I’d have time to make myself an espresso, look out my window and appreciate and savor this gift brought to me from Paris! When you are new to the self-care journey, building on what you already do is a less overwhelming place to start.
The other day I walked past a super fancy chocolate shop, that I have walked by many times before. However, I have rarely ventured inside, because it just smells expensive. And it is. But turns out buying three little chocolates is not. And that’s what I did, I treated myself to 3 different kinds of indulgent, decadent Belgian chocolate. Who says you have to buy a pound and then blow your budget? Not me!
So this week, allow yourself to savor, appreciate and embellish what you are already doing for yourself.
“Do small things with great love.” -Mother Teresa
Take care of YOU.