Why is self-care so important to me? In all honesty, it’s important to me because I know the benefits of it.
Let’s first start with the definition of self-care that I often refer to: “𝐒𝐞𝐥𝐟-𝐜𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐢𝐬 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐦𝐢𝐧𝐝𝐬𝐞𝐭, 𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐯𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐞𝐬, 𝐩𝐫𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐞𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐡𝐚𝐛𝐢𝐭𝐬 𝐰𝐞 𝐛𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐨 𝐛𝐞𝐚𝐫 𝐚𝐠𝐚𝐢𝐧𝐬𝐭 𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐬, 𝐮𝐧𝐡𝐚𝐩𝐩𝐢𝐧𝐞𝐬𝐬, 𝐢𝐥𝐥𝐧𝐞𝐬𝐬, 𝐝𝐞𝐩𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐬𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐦𝐚𝐧𝐲 𝐦𝐨𝐫𝐞 𝐧𝐞𝐠𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐯𝐞 emotions...”
September 2019 is when it all began (at least that’s what I recall). I had a lot of work stress, I was still grieving the loss of my dad, it seemed everyone around me was dealing with some HEAVY stuff, etc and it ALL just became to much to bear. All I remember is constantly feeling like my heart was racing; constantly checking my heart rate through an app; constantly feeling like I was going to die; constantly being afraid and not being able to listen to any BAD news; constantly crying, constantly being afraid to be alone, not being able to be around loud noises; trying various herbal supplements (St. John’s Wart, etc) to help me “relax”; constantly not being able to sleep and Melatonin becoming my BFF; constantly jumping up in the middle of the night suddenly; constant ER visits; constant urgent care visits...THE LIST GOES ON!
I was reluctant and didn’t want to accept what they were saying, but after hearing the SAME thing from many doctors, I decided to do a lot of research on my own. After my own research, finally accepted that I was suffering from anxiety.
Finally, I decided to meet with a therapist and I must say, the best decision that I could have made! The techniques and strategies, as well as the time to just put “it” all on the table. And let me say this, therapy can be beneficial if you go into it openly and you allow yourself to be vulnerable.
From there, I understood why self-care had become my platform 2 years prior. It became my platform, not only to encourage others to practice self-care, but also to make sure that I was taking care of me! I needed to slow down and P.L.A.N (Practice Loving And Nurturing) myself!!! My PLAN included implementing yoga, meditation, lots of praying/fasting, LOTS of listening to sermons/podcasts AND several other practices that were specific to my personal self-care journey. Listen, self-care is so important, and it’s not just a BUZZ word or a TREND!! Self-care is a REAL thing and those who are also on this journey can attest to this. It’s not a walk in the park, or a one time thing. It’s soul searching; it’s being honest with self; it’s spending time alone and attempting to figure “it” out; it’s digging deep and exposing yourself, then taking “ALL OF THAT” and doing something with it. There has to be an action attached to self-care! It can’t just be a thought. Self-care is an ongoing journey, AND yes it’s that deep! Some days are better than others, but you learn to celebrate those victories and keep going!
So as I said before, self-care is important to me because I know the benefits and how it has truly helped me continue to LIVE. You can live as well. Take it one day at a time and know that you’re not alone!