I’m sure you’re thinking, “Well, duh. We know it’s not all about bath bombs.”
Hear me out for a minute. As much as I LOVE that self-care is being talked about more often, that’s when it becomes associated with trends or specific ideas that people become attached to. For example, I wrote a post on how minimalism isn’t a one-size-fits-all concept, and the EXACT same things can be said about self-care. Minimalism doesn’t look like black and white closet with only 2o items in it for everyone who identifies as a minimalist. Self-care doesn’t look like bath bombs and bottles of wine to everyone who is in need of self-care.
Although I’m passionate about practicing self-care, I’ve noticed that people are assuming it’s only about pampering yourself and getting cozy with a good book. Yes, those activities definitely count as self-care, and it’s GREAT to have calming, relaxing activities for when you need to indulge in a little time for yourself. However, self-care isn’t only about taking a bath with the newest bath bomb.
Self-care can look like:
1| Reading your favorite book.
3| Positive affirmations.
4| Turning off your phone.
5| Going for a walk.
On the end of the spectrum, self-care can be more serious for some. Some people are focused on MUCH bigger things than taking a relaxing bath. They’re worried about money, they’re worried about not having their life together in any sense of the word. They are people who may not have had a nutritious meal in weeks, and are eating fast food three times a day because it’s cheaper than buying groceries, and making food for themselves.
Self-care looks different for everyone. It’s important to remember than someone’s version of self-care may honestly be helping their well-being in a much more significant way. Self-care might be the reason someone keeps their apartment because they stopped going out for meals and drinks. Self-care might be that someone finally stopped working hours of overtime because they saw how much it impacted their health. Self-care might be someone who finally took every one of their vacation days because they’re so used to working instead of creating balance in their life.
Self-care can ALSO look like:
1| Saving money to help pay off student loans.
2| Spending less money on material things.
3| Nourishing your body with fresh, whole foods.
4| Ending toxic friendships who only bring stress to your life.
5| Spending time with people who lift you up.
I’ve written a few posts on self-care, and I’ve talked about the other side of it, too. I’ve talked about the lighthearted end of treating yourself to a glass of wine, your favorite dessert, or your favorite movie with a friend. I still stand by the fact that there’s nothing wrong with those things. In fact, some of my posts this month will talk about those methods of self-care, too because they are equally important! But, I also feel that it’s time to talk about the other end of self-care. The side that most people feel uncomfortable talking about because not all of us have been in that place before.
It’s hard to relate to something you may have never had to deal with, however you can still show empathy and compassion for those who view self-care in a different way than you do. The goal of self-care is to focus on what will improve your life, and will ultimately create a more blissful, healthier YOU!
Remember that some people are going through some heavy hardships in their life. They might not have it all together, and self-care might be taking a shower for the first time this week because they are struggling with depression. It might be someone going out to eat with their friends for the first time in months because they suffer from debilitating anxiety. You never know what someone may be going through, so always offer encouragement and support when someone is excited about the form of self-care they are indulging in. You never know how much it could impact their life in a positive way.