Practicing self care.
Let’s make the assumption that it makes as much sense for us to care for ourselves as it does for us to care for others. That taking care of ourselves is as important as taking care of others.
Yet we all know how easy it is to let self care get pushed aside. Although we often think of our society as the pinnacle of all societies—and I do believe in some ways it is a vast improvement over earlier economic systems such as feudalism and slavery—it is still quite hard on many, many people. In fact, it’s hard on all of us in different ways. One way it is hard on folks who work long hours, including both working- and middle-class workers, is that it robs us of our time. Including time that we would otherwise use for self care.
I am extremely fortunate that I don’t have the pressures of a 9 to 5 (or 8 to 6) job. I don’t need to punch the clock somewhere. But even so, I sometimes feel that I shouldn’t be taking time in the morning to do yoga. And recently I read about the benefits of taking a short nap (even 15 minutes) in the early afternoon–but how many of us can easily incorporate that into our workplace life?
So there are two examples–exercise and rest. What do you do for exercise? How often can you manage to make time in your schedule for physical activity? What pressures do you face in doing do? And as for rest, how much rest do you get? Do you sleep as much as your body needs?
What else falls in this category of self care? Our dietary habits. Attending to our medical needs. Making time for relaxation. Giving attention to our spiritual needs. Our emotional needs. Are there other needs that you can think of? Other ways we can take care of ourselves?
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