Writing this morning with my full cup of coffee and a rainy day outside, perfect weather for staying home with my family, watching movies, racing Hotwheels and cooking. Or so I thought before I woke up and discovered our cats have made a mess on the couch so the husband went to rent a steam cleaner, my dog has somehow scratched the inside of one of her ears and needs to go to the vet and I way overslept this morning so I am behind on my daily yoga and need to fit that in somewhere too. Why am I mentioning all of this? Because life doesn't always go according to plan and our expectation for situations, people, animals (ugh! 13 year old cats are just spiteful sometimes when they dislike the 1 year old puppy) sometimes throws us curveballs and we have to decide how to react. Granted all of these curveballs are small and manageable, I do know that, but at the same time it can be extrapolated to larger circumstances like health, relationships, life plans etc.
More and more these days I realize how much my daily actions add up into the person that I am and the life that I lead. It starts with my mindset and what I am choosing as a priority in life. For me family is up there for me of course, they mean the world to me. And I would say that work has always been at the top of the list and while I Love what I do, I am getting better at adding something to the top that has sometimes been there, sometimes not, depending on the circumstances around me and outside of me. That's Self-Care.
I have tried all kinds of avenues for this - kickboxing, running, Beachbody Coaching, yoga, meditation, lying on the couch and ignoring it all when I'm tired ha! All kinds of diets or food plans, all kinds of structured regimented schedules and just winging it. For me personally, I love yoga, meditation and some kind of cardio a few times a week whether that be bike riding, HIIT workouts or a quick run, hey even dancing. That is what works best to lift my body, mind and spirit and I meditate (almost) daily.
Here's the thing - there are so many of us and I fall guilty of this too, that wear "Busy" like a badge of honor. As if to say we are so "stressed" we can't possibly take care of ourselves, external circumstances have built up beyond our control and we let it all fall to the wayside. Sometimes that is a true thing and life is a crushing wave you just ride until you can see land again, but most of the time we build those external circumstances into such mountains, convinced that not only will the world stop spinning if we take time for ourselves but also that our success and worth is almost built into being too "busy" to make time for self-care.
You know I love massage yes? Of course I believe this can be a way to bring you back home to your mind and body but even ten minutes of journaling, gratitude exercises, stretching, a HIIT workout to get your blood moving - there are so many options that don't require a lot of time but they do require you to set yourself on your own priority list. Just a few more would be to go sit outside in the sun for a few minutes, enjoy a fresh piece of fruit or veggies and really notice what you are eating, put on your favorite song and get up to dance for a break at work (bring headphones if you can't blast it out loud ha!), or carve out time for a bath or end of day pre-sleep ritual that doesn't involve anything electronic.
External circumstances will always be there, that by definition is life, it's our inner calm and choice about how we respond to our circumstances that defines us. Ultimately it's all we have control over as well. For myself I choose to put my health and happiness at the top of the list regardless of those minor curveballs that show up because I know that choice on a daily basis adds up to my overall well being. If I don't make the choice to keep myself as a priority, worthy of care and attention - who will? Just something to consider this Monday as a new week begins. I am wishing you all a week where you know your worth and know your light so that you can make those small self-care choices that add up to your wellbeing. As always I am here if you need me!
Have a beautiful day,