As I shared in my last post, this year began with a natural disaster in my community, and it really rocked my world.
More than ever, in 2018 I’ve been called to move even further away from the mentality of “just getting through it” when shit gets hard and to deepen into the truth: that challenging times are an incredible opportunity to learn to ride the waves of our emotions.
As I have been riding the waves these past six weeks, I’ve spent a lot of time and energy reflecting… on the past year, on the fragility of life, and on the importance of living life fully and authentically each and every day.
A few themes have emerged powerfully in my reflections, and over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing those with you in a series of three emails.
It’s my intention to reach you where you are in this moment, to awaken these energies in your life, and also to clarify my commitment to you and to this community moving forward.
So, let’s begin, what really is self-care?
Over the past 5 years self-care has become a catchphrase in our society.
I remember nearly a decade ago, when I first began deeply engaging with self-care, it was like I had entered a whole new world. I went from subconsciously treating myself like shit to treating myself with respect and care.
I started to shift from the deep belief that my worthiness was somehow tied to what the world thought of me and how I lived up to (or failed to live up to) those expectations, and it made a huge difference in my life.
So, what did this shift look like?
Instead of routinely working late into the night, I made a commitment to prioritizing my well-being, and many nights stopping work before it was “done”.
I started reminding myself that regardless of the number on the bathroom scale, I deserved to take radical care of myself.
I stopped forcing myself to stick to a strict workout schedule even when I was sick or in need of rest, and I began learning to listen to what my body needed.
I began learning that what my body & soul needs changes from day to day, and self-care became less about treating myself—maybe a pedicure once in a while or that day of treating myself to the spa—and more about nurturing and loving myself through everything that life brings with it: the heartbreak, the mistakes, the times I feel completely out of sorts or find myself doubting whether or not I am cut out to have the things I truly desire.
Self-care has become really trendy lately. On one hand, I am stoked about this, because I know from my own personal experience and from witnessing the growth of those I teach that true self-care has the possibility to transform a life.
I am grateful that something so powerful has become more mainstream.
On the other hand, I’m often consumed by the question of how we can hold these teachings sacred, so that they don’t just become another thing that capitalism gets its fingers on and bastardizes and appropriates.
I definitely don’t have all the answers, and what I keep coming back to is the truth that radical self-care can’t be bought, because it means caring for ourselves not only through the peaks, high moments, “successes”, or picture-able moments on Instagram, but also tending to ourselves in the dark spaces, when those parts of us that may feel less than desirable show up.
My desire this year, more than ever, is to continue to pull the veil back and reminding you that I am human too… that self-care isn’t just a time capsule of shiny moments on Instagram. It’s tending to ALL parts, even the ones we deem “unworthy”, yeah, those parts are loveable and included too.
How are you engaging with self-care today?
Are you aware of any spaces in your life where the idea of self-care is somehow caught up with thinking that the outside rules and scripts somehow know better than your own inner wisdom?
What mis-belief around self-care are you ready to let go of so that you can begin or continue to deepen into self-care as a way of life, rather than just a trend?
I’d love to hear what resonates, and what’s speaking to you!
Stay tuned for next week’s part 2, where I share more about the importance of stillness… how to integrate the power of the pause- a deeply essential quality- even in a world where we’re taught more, better, faster is the best.
P.S. Things opening up for you from this article, and desiring ways to support yourself with self-care in this new way?
Try this: Each morning over the next week, when you wake up in the morning, instead of reaching for your phone, take a moment to pause, take a deep breath, feel your body, and notice your energy level and what’s alive in you today. It’s in this moments of practice (even for 30 seconds) that we begin to deepen a fluency of tending to the care of us at our core, and not some script we think we should follow.