While you will hear me rave about self-care on the daily, I want to make one thing VERY clear. I am not broken and neither are you.
Self-care is something that is at the forefront of social media and trending around North America, however, there are two kinds of self-care, and I want to help you realize the IMPORTANT differences between the two.
The first = Consumerism Based Self-Care
What I mean by this is that companies are taking advantage of our obsession with trends, as well as our vulnerability and self-doubt. And it is an obsession…believe me, I have very recently been in that state myself - and if this makes you happy and is sustainable for your life-style then that is incredible! You do you and live your best life!
BUT, that is not attainable for a lot of people, nor is it sustainable. By this, I mean that it is a temporary sense of satisfaction and self-worth brought on by material objects. AGAIN… don’t get me wrong, I love me a good spa night as much as the next person and I still have them every now and then. BUT when my depression and anxiety hit me hard, a bubble bath is NOT going to be my salvation.
This brings us to the next type of self-care…
The Second = Introspective Self-Care
Introspection = the examination or observation of one’s own mental and emotional processes (thanks Google!)
Now, like I said before… if luxury skincare and expensive spa routines perk you up then that is amazing! But if you have spent all of your money trying to buy a stress-free, anxiety-free life and you have gotten NOWHERE… then perhaps try starting from scratch like I did. Introspective self-care focuses on diving deep into your mind and soul and figuring out what it is that makes you unhappy, what makes you stressed and anxious and depressed… and determining HOW we can adjust our lives to remove those unhappy things from it. Doing this allows you to learn more about who you are as a person, what is really important to you, what brings you joy, and makes you ask yourself what do you want out of life? The best and most affordable (a.k.a completely free) form of self-care (in my humble opinion) is deep breathing. By taking 10 minutes out of your day to close your eyes, separate yourself from the world around you, breathe in, and ONLY focus on restoring your mind, you are able to spend some serious, quality time with your thoughts and work through whatever may be making you unhappy. I know it sounds silly… sitting in a quiet room, listening to rain, and focusing on nothing but your own breath. But until you try it for yourself, you will not be able to see the value behind spending time with your thoughts.
Deep breathing not for you? That is COMPLETELY cool too! Simply picking up a notebook and writing down your thoughts, dreams, or even all of the negative things that have been circulating in your mind lately is another INCREDIBLE way to clear your mind and release some stress or tension that you may be feeling. Even if you are sitting here thinking that you never feel that stressed… that is okay too. Journaling your thoughts and feelings is such a healthy way to take some time for yourself, even if you just like to doodle, jot down things you need to remember for later, or brief little summaries of your days, it is an activity that puts you first and is therapeutic in so many ways.
I know that this has been a lot of babbling on my part, but I hope that reading this inspires you to spend some FREE time on yourself, without feeling the need to spend hundreds of dollars on products that claim to make you a better version of you… because YOU have control over your own perception of yourself. If you want to see yourself as a happy and confident person, then all you need to do is practice telling yourself that every day until you believe it.
Comfort is the enemy of progress.
- The Greatest Showman