Have you fallen off track with your self care resolutions lately? Were you on a roll with your exercise routine but after missing one session things quickly snowballed into many missed sessions? Has life gotten in the way of you and that coveted refueling time? Is getting back into the swing of things been all the more harder?
It Happens to the Best of Us
I understand this experience all too well. I’m now on the other end of a difficult last few months of having struggled to keep up my own routine. It felt like I barely got a chance to take a breather in between the passing of, now counting, 5 people I know, since January, this among other major transitions.
Dust Yourself Off
In the 2 decades since I started this journey of self care, there were innumerable times that I completely stopped my self care activities for weeks at a time. I’d end up feeling horrible and after it got bad enough, I’d drag myself to begin again and exert my itsy bitsy, teeny tiny attempts at climbing back to the feel good plateau I had maintained before I fell from grace.
What is Your WHY?
What I know is that it’s our “whys” for even engaging in self care that fuel us to continue them when we hit bumps along the way. If our whys aren’t strong enough, we will not be able to sustain them. It is precisely in those times when we get sidetracked, that a window of opportunity is opened for us to dig deep and uncover what our real whys are for doing our chosen resolution.
Uncover Those Beliefs
We will simultaneously discover in inquiring that there are also un-examined beliefs about ourselves that need our attention. On the journey to maintaining lifelong self care habits there will inevitably be an uncomfortable threshold we will need to pass. We will either push through the threshold by shedding light on those beliefs and whys or we will abandon our efforts.
Over the Hump and Back Into The Swing
There has always been for me an un-examined belief that needed to be unearthed if I was to pass this uncomfortability threshold. I know in the past, my self care skipping days that I allowed to snowball, were really coming from my not feeling worthy. I didn’t feel worthy of the effort to pre-plan my self care around the what regularly sidetracked me, social events.
Once I unearthed that belief, it was easy from there going forward to tweak those slippery slope occasions by planning for them in advance. Hitting those sticky points that derail us though are precisely the opportune times to dig in to find those beliefs
Your Fuel For Sustaining Your Self Care Resolutions
Your reason for allowing things to get in the way of refueling yourself regularly may be different, but I can bet it is some version of not feeling worthy and enough, especially if you are a woman.
Once we address our beliefs then our superficial reasons for starting our self care, for example: exercising solely for the purpose of being more attractive to the opposite sex, can deepen into a more substantial why, one that we feel in our hearts and continues to motivate us when the going gets tough
Deepen your Why
I recently gained a fresh perspective on reasons for continuing my efforts to maintain my self care resolutions when things get tough. I wanted to share this crucial insight with you in the hopes that it may help you if you’re struggling.
Executive Consultant Advises on Energy Management
In recently listening to my favorite podcast The Unmistakable Creative by Srini Rao I listened to him interview Anese Cavanagh. Anese is a strategist for business leaders in the design, service, and innovation spaces, creator of the IEP methods and author of Contagious Culture: Show Up, Set the Tone, and Intentionally Create an Organization That Thrives.
The Burnout Epidemic
In her consulting of executives for years, she has commonly observed burnout among the cream of the crop . She speaks about the importance of self care to prevent it and used a term that had me light up like a Christmas tree, foundational energy. She explained that our self care makes up our foundational energy which fuels how we show up in every aspect of our life. It is in essence our very foundation.
Self Care= Foundational Energy
Hearing this word set of a train of connections on the movement of energy in our lives. What we know from science is that energy is everywhere, in everything and stuff is exchanging it all the time. We need basic energy to live and seek it in food, sleep and movement. The higher more refined energy like emotional and mental energy helps us go beyond basic survival to do more complex things like solve problems and catch the important nuances in our relationships.
Are You Giving or Taking?
Our foundational energy comes from our daily selected sources which we regularly turn to. If our selected sources provide high amounts of energy, we blossom because we have more energy to give without burning out. Anese put to words something I have been feeling for years, she said in each moment wherever we are, we are either contributing to a life affirming and strengthening experience to all we interact with or we are draining those people and environments we are interacting with.
Strong Self Care= Effective Impact
We are always having an impact, whether we provide or take away is largely affected by how much foundational energy we have. It is low when our self care is not solid, we don’t sleep deep, eat well, move enough and unconsciously feed our hearts and minds with whatever is trendy and crosses our path online and on TV.
Inner Containers Affecting Our Outer Containers
Anese went on to say that our self care is the container for how we carry ourselves and how others feel in our presence. Our presence speaks beyond our words, clothes, work titles and credentials. What we have been feeding ourselves long before we even step in front of another person is the major influencing factor in how people view us.
We Carry With Us How We Care For Ourselves
What we do in our private time to fuel ourselves acts as a container for our inner world. We then bring the fruits of that to the outer containers of the relationships we have in our lives whether they be work or personal. The quality of energy we have been feeding ourselves is what the world receives from us in every moment.
Each Relationship, a World That we Hold the Space for
Each interaction with another person is a container in of itself. Either within that space we create an interaction that is strengthening or weakening for both. We have our home that is a container and how we fuel ourselves is influenced by that as well, you get the idea.
Small Hinges Swing Big Doors
Taking care of ourselves goes deeper than just following a personal whimsy and getting in our happy place, it is the launch pad from where all aspects of our lives hinge upon. So just as small hinges swing big doors, think about how a half hour in your morning self care, swings the big doors of how you meet your goals at work and with your loved ones.
I was so excited from seeing self care through this new lens that I made an info-graphic below.
Let me know if something is not clear and still needs to be explained or shown. As always if this post was helpful to you take a sec to like, share or comment below. Thank you for making me a part of your day!