I used to think self care was just another one of those new agey trends reserved for people who went on meditation retreats and drank wheatgrass shots on the reg.
It wasn't until I went to hear Melissa Fabello speak about self care in recovery that I realized it was not only something I could do, but something I should do.
We tend to feel selfish for taking time out for ourselves. It's easy to think you need to be productive and busy 24/7 in a world that praises the go-go-go lifestyle. And of course, working hard and living a full life is important and admirable. But it's equally important to stop and take care of yourself when you need to.
Because life, and especially recovery, is all about balance.
Incorporating self care into my daily routine was really difficult for me because I had spent so much time fighting my body, so much time basically destroying it, that I no longer knew what made it happy. I no longer knew what felt good. It took a lot of trial and error (and one very bizarre visit to a spiritual "healer") to figure out what worked for me.
Just like not everyone's recovery is the same, not everyone's self care is the same either. But I also know it can be hard to know where to even start if it's something you've never really practiced before.
So here are my 5 favorite ways to get my self care on (and thanks Heather for the linkup!)
I've always been a big reader. It's my favorite way to escape from whatever is bothering me and just get lost in something other than my own thoughts. I just finished reading Me Before You (it's coming out as a movie next week!) and seriously, it was amazing. Absolute must read!
2. Get outside
I work all day in an office so I always try to get outside for a little bit after work, even if it's just for half an hour. You don't have to exercise (and obviously you shouldn't if you're recovering!) to get the benefits of the outdoors. Simply sitting in the sun can do wonders for your mood.
3. Take a shower (or even better, a bubble bath!)
A nice hot shower never fails to make me feel at least a little bit happier and more alive. And no girl can deny the power of a bubble bath. Throw in a Lush bath bomb and a glass of wine and you've got yourself the perfect evening!
4. Give myself a massage
OK this sounds kind of weird. And yeah, I probably look very weird doing it. But please don't knock it til you try it! Seriously. If you've never given yourself a foot massage, you don't know what you're missing! (PS there's no picture for this because if you've ever tried to google self-massage images, DON'T).
5. Eat a yummy snack
Honestly I think this is the best one! I know everyone says emotional eating is bad and blah, blah, blah but guess what? In recovery, our hunger cues are often pretty messed up. So even if you aren't "starving", you might still be hungry. Especially if you're feeling fatigued and can't focus, etc. I'd bet a lot of money a snack would perk you right up! My personal favorite at the moment is frosted animal crackers. Helloooooo heaven.
And with that, I'm off to our mountain house in West Virginia for the holiday weekend. Here's to three days spent at my favorite place in the world with my favorite people, my grandparents! There's no cell reception there and it's such a treat to unplug. Not to mention we get to swim in the river, kayak, roast marshmallows, and just relax. Hope you all have a wonderful Memorial Day!!
What good books have you been reading lately?
What's one of your go-to favorite snacks?