Self-Care: Making Yourself a Priority for 2012

Many people think of self-care as a quick fix to relieve stress, worry, tension, etc. Although bubble baths or massages can relieve stress and anxiety temporarily, they cannot stop us from reacting to everyday events and situations that overwhelm us.

What’s Self Care?

True self-care is more about PREVENTION rather than INTERVENTION. Let’s first look at intervention. The act of reacting to an event is called intervention. An argument with a family member, a unreasonable demand from a supervisor or unexpected expense are all examples of intervention. You might respond by verbally attacking another person or biting your tongue. Sometimes we may think that the other person is to blame (for all of our problems) or think, “What’s wrong?” We might resort to stress-relieving activities like massages or bubble baths to help us deal with our reactions. After the water has drained and the last muscle has been kneaded is over, the consequences of our actions will remain. It is possible that we have done or said something that we regret to another person or ourselves. This leads to more interventions, whether they are healthy or not, and so the cycle continues. These are some examples of intervention strategies:

You should not yell at anyone else but into a pillow

Treating yourself to decadent dessert

Take a long, hot bath in a bubble bath

Preventing failure is about setting ourselves up for success, and shaping our reactions BEFORE we get it. Respecting yourself enough to make healthier choices than unhealthy is part of prevention. It is about consistency, commitment, and lifestyle. We can commit to prevention and learn how to take care ourselves (mind-body-spirit) in a way that allows us to take time before we react, choose our words, and handle stressful situations with respect for ourselves and others. Prevention is ultimately about how we treat ourself – how we act, what thoughts we have and how we feel about us. Some prevention strategies include:

Get enough sleep every night (7 to 9 hours).

Regular movement (walking, exercising, etc.) is important.

Daily affirmations of positivity to yourself

Although massages and bubble baths can be a part of a self-care plan, they are just one part. It is important to include prevention strategies in your self-care plan to ensure that you are taking better care of yourself.

What gets in the way of good self-care?

It is clear that wanting something, such as better health, relationships, or giving ourselves more priority in our lives, and actually getting it is two different things. A wish, a desire or a thought is enough to make you want it. It takes action to get it. If you don’t take action, your desire can lead to longing and bitterness for the unfulfilled dreams. To get what you want, it is necessary to DO SOMETHING OR DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT. It seems so simple. It seems so simple. So, why is it that so many people struggle with it?

This is because we often take action based on other things that we don’t see or sometimes don’t realize exist. Things like our attitudes and our thoughts. Things like attitudes and thoughts.

Spouses

Children

Parents

Bosses

Jobs

Money

Circumstances

It is easy to make excuses. Everyone seems to have the same sentiments. When you look at your thoughts and attitudes, you will see that it is you who have the power to make what you want into reality. Let’s look at it more closely.

Your attitude is your overall attitude towards life. Positive people can see the good in even the most difficult situations. Negative attitudes tend to overlook or deny the positive aspects of any situation. Many self care strategies relieve stress people are somewhere in the middle. Depending on the situation, they may be more inclined towards a positive or negative outlook.

Your thoughts are what you think about yourself and others. Your beliefs and overall attitude shape your thoughts. Recurrent thoughts can lead to thought patterns that influence what we do and say.

You can retrain yourself to be more positive by simply noticing how you react to certain situations and then choosing positive thoughts. Here are some tips to help you do this:

Write down the thoughts that you have about yourself or others when faced with stressful situations. You might begin to notice some patterns once you do this enough.

Ask people you trust if you have a positive attitude or a negative one. Ask them to give you examples of what they think and say that lead them to believe the way they do. Ask them to point out positive and negative reactions. You will be able to see what a positive or negative attitude is for you.

A list of positive thoughts is something you should always have with you. It is a good idea to take the list out and use it as a guideline when you feel negative thoughts or a negative attitude creeping in.

Self-Care

You can learn the best long-term strategies for self-care by looking at history. It’s your history. You are more likely to repeat what worked in the past.