Recently there’s been a bit of chat about episode 59 of the Change the Game podcast ‘Self care for beautiful, busy women’ in the Change the Game Tribe which got me thinking about self care. Specifically about the way it’s generally discussed and the expectations that sets up for women.
The impression that a lot of self care advice gives is that if I do these type of things; take time for myself, journal each morning, book regular massages, eat healthy food, then that’ll create an important shift in my life. I’ll be so much healthier and happier.
And to a large extent that’s true. Starting a gratitude journal did that for me years ago. It shifted my perspective and really got the ball rolling on my personal development journey.
The thing I’ve been reflecting on though, is that this is often as deep as the investigation goes.
But if you dig just a little bit deeper on the topic of self care, here’s what you find; the desire for health and happiness is actually the desire to feel complete, to feel whole.
And that desire exists because people don’t feel whole. They feel like something’s missing, or like they’re flawed in some way. They feel the need to ‘fix’ themselves.
When we feel this way, our self care practices focus on repairing something that’s broken, instead of celebrating and nurturing oneself.
And while you’re in repair mode, no amount of salt baths or mani pedis are going to fill your void.
This is the secret to self care practices that nobody ever speaks about; they don’t complete you.
What they are in fact, is an expression of your completeness.
Take the self care practice of working with your breath. Let’s say you’ve decided to stop for ten minutes each day, take deep breaths and pay attention to your body. You start with great intentions, but after day 3 you forget. You remember again on day 5 and you do some more breathing. Then you forget for a few more days and then resume again on day 15. Things proceed like that for the rest of the month.
That kind of approach says something important about your commitment to yourself and your intention to connect with your deepest truth. It says that you’re partially committed and that you’ve probably not yet seen the type of results you’d like to see to convince you to really prioritise it in your day.
Now let’s say you’re regularly taking ten minutes a day to connect with your breath. It has become a habit. A healthy habit you might say. 🙂 That says something quite different about your intention to reconnect with the truth of yourself. It says you’re on the path. It also indicates that you’ve probably started to embody the wholeness you’re searching for. You’ve had a taste of it and you’re keen for more.
Then there’s another level; it’s when you no longer need to schedule in time to connect with your breath. You don’t need to schedule in the time because you’re living in connection with your breath in every moment. Now that says something entirely different about your level of connection with the truth of yourself. It indicates that you’re a living emanation of wholeness. Which of course, is the purpose of all this self care in the first place.
So, how are you travelling along the self care spectrum? Where do you find yourself at this moment in time?
This inquiry is so useful. Not if you are going to judge yourself for where you are – this isn’t a competition and there’s no end point. But because facing the truth of where you are in any moment is so healing. By choosing to see yourself and accept yourself exactly where you are, you’re taking a deep dive into self love.
Then, and only then, will you take the kind of action that’ll actually answer the question that kick started this whole thing in the first place; what will make me healthier and happier? What will make me feel complete and whole?
I created the online program Build Healthy Habits to support you in really diving deep on this question. To move you along the self care spectrum until you’re a living breathing emanation of the whole and divine being that you truly are.
Build Healthy Habits is on sale for the month of May. Check it out here, join us today, and save yourself $100. It might just be the best self care move you ever made.