Let’s just say it like it is, life can get pretty busy sometimes. Things start piling up and before we realize it, our schedules are filled and our days are packed. When life starts to get busy, it feels our own needs are the first to be pushed to the side. In fact, we sometimes wear busyness and hustle as a badge of honour by treating our lack of self-care as a noble or selfless act.
The thing about self-care that we need to realize is that it isn’t selfish at all. Even when life feels busy and things may be stressful, it’s important to make sure that we are finding the time to take care of ourselves, too.
Why you need to prioritize your self-care
There’s a Zen Proverb that goes, “you should sit in meditation for twenty minutes every day – unless you’re too busy; then you should sit for an hour.” When we’re busy, a lot of us tend to push our own needs to the side. This may seem to work temporarily, but the reality is that ignoring our own needs isn’t exactly sustainable. While we may be able to run on fumes for a short time, sooner or later we may start to feel burnt out or crash.
Let’s briefly touch on what the heck self-care is because it can sometimes get misconstrued. Self-care quite literally is about caring for ourselves. It’s all about making sure that our needs are met so we can feel complete and fulfilled in order to better show up for the world around us. Sometimes this may look like a pamper session to destress and unwind, but sometimes it can look like making sure we get enough sleep or we’re drinking enough water.
Self-Care For The Ones Who Don’t Slow Down
1. Listen to your needs
Take time to zone in on yourself and to listen to your needs. Despite always being with ourselves, our needs can sometimes be left unchecked or downright ignored. For example, have you ever noticed that sleep seems to be the first thing we push to the side when life gets busy? When life feels busy, take the time to check in with yourself to see how you’re doing. Are you drinking enough water? Are you feeling rested and recharged? Are you eating enough? Self-care sometimes means taking it back to basics to make sure you are able to properly care for yourself.
2. Schedule it
Schedule your self-care as if you were scheduling a meeting or an appointment. While sometimes we may find ourselves willing to take the time for certain things in our lives, it seems as though our self-care is regularly forgotten. Schedule times to eat, sleep, take a bubble bath… whatever it is you need.
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3. Integrate it into your life
Instead of looking at self-care as something that needs to take away from our day (such as time dedicated to get your nails done or to have a bubble bath), find a way to integrate it into your life. Take a few moments to meditate before getting out of bed in the morning, take the stairs instead of the elevator if you want a few more steps in, or find quick meals that you can prepare in advance if you are feeling too busy to cook regularly. If you’re wanting self-care practices that are sustainable for the longterm, the best way to do it is to find a way to work it into your daily life.
4. Limit negativity
They say that we’re most like the 5 people we spend most of our time with – when we’re around people who are negative or unhappy, we are more likely to be negative and unhappy as well. Especially when life feels busy, it’s important to limit the negativity in your life by setting boundaries or removing yourself when possible. If you feel as though you can’t escape the negativity, one way to infuse a little more positivity and love into your life is through podcasts, audiobooks, YouTube videos, or even networking online. The digital world we live in allows us to connect to virtually anyone from virtually anywhere in the world at a moment’s notice – we just need to know where to look.
5. Practice gratitude
Practicing gratitude is one of the best ways to prioritize self-care, regardless of how busy you may be. The reality is that life can sometimes happen so quickly, and if we don’t actively take the time to acknowledge it as it’s happening, it may pass us by without even realizing it. Practicing gratitude regularly allows us to focus on and appreciate the beauty in our lives, as well as the opportunities. If you’re not sure where to begin when it comes to gratitude practices, check out this post here.