I’ve had a busy crunch period of work the last few months. It has been demanding mentally and physically to juggle a job, book, articles, appearances and dear ones not to mention carve out a bit of me time. My schedule literally did not allow for much flexibility. When your work is a product for someone else to use on the day, an experience others get to enjoy or a project with a clear deadline there is no room for the slack of doing it tomorrow. So, as I settled down to another coffee in my neighborhood giving myself a gift of 20min and a beautiful sunset doing nothing else but enjoying the foam of my cappuccino and people passing by on the pavement, I had a realization.
There are many articles written about why women shop, why they get beauty products and fill their closets to the brim with clothes. Why in general many of us give into consumerism at a scale that is hard on our wallets and probably good for the economy at the moment. And what I realized is that these little (thought, not always inexpensive) treats serve a great purpose. That morning cup of coffee at Starbucks or your local friendly coffee shop, the new pair of jeans in a pastel colour that make you feel fabulous, or a comforting glass of wine are an easy way of taking care of you! That’s right. It’s a simple way the mind decides that you deserve to do something for yourself. It’s a signal that you might be so busy, that you’re forgetting to take care of you in a healthy and balanced way without the costs.
Are there healther and cheaper alternatives? Of course! I came up with a short list of things I tried in the last few days which I’d like to offer you as a starter for ten. I’m sure you can think of others. If you do, please add them to this list. We all need to look after ourselves a lot more than we realize. After all who else will?
So don’t wait for your body to remind you that you count. Or your credit card balance to alert you that you need to take a closer look at how much quality time you are giving to your well being. By making time for simple activities that restore you, those jeans will likely fit better, that wine taste more sweet and your credit card alas will get a breather.
Simple ways to take care of oneself:
- Leave at least two days in a week with nothing to do in the evening but rest.
- Plan your work in advance and don’t say yes to more unless you stare at your diary.
- Exercise regularly – aim for 10min and start slow. Take a walk in the evening and notice the moon.
- Give yourself short breaks in fresh air.
- Consider all the wonderful acts of kindness that surround you. Mine was a caretaker I pass often on the pavement looking after a disabled man.
- Brew yourself your own tea infusion. I’m loving ginger tea at the moment. It’s calming and boosts the immune system.
- Send one of your dear ones a greeting card through the mail.
- Eat more fish and fresh veg. It’s good for you and brainless to prepare.
- Listen to some stand up comedy to make you laugh.
- Get enough sleep. Ok, do buy some luxury sheets and your body will thank you!
Find delight in the things around you. Notice them. Sunsets are particularly beautiful this time of the year as are all the spring flowers scents. Use your senses and give yourself time to just be.