Is self-care selfish?
I read an article recently that hinted at self-care being a selfish act. It suggested that we are too concerned with our own selves and should be focusing less energy on self-care and more on our bonds with those around us. Now, I am as happy and willing to build connection and bonds with those around me as the next person, but if I am in a bad place at that time, then they aren’t gonna be getting the best of me…and isn’t that worse?
Live life your way
I write about living your best life.
I want everyone to know that the choice is theirs to make, that they can live a life as big and grand as they please, or indeed, live as simply and humbly as they please.
The choice is yours, maybe you want to do great things, or maybe you are content to simply be. But the point is it’s YOUR best life – not mine, or your best friend’s, or your parent’s, or your manager’s…
Your life, your way. This has to start with you.
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I am a HUGE fan of self-care. Unapologetically so… Self-care is not selfish. It is essential! But I’m not talking about bubble bath and candles here.
Those things are awesome and there is undoubtedly a time and a place for them, but what I am talking about is self-care to the core, things like:
- Doing right by yourself in the face of adversity.
- Always putting your true self first.
- Standing up for your beliefs and desires
- Knowing your own truth
- Owning your space
- Nourishing your needs
- And doing these things, not at the expense of others, but because it is only by being utterly loyal to yourself that you can give the best to those you care about, and who care about you.
Yes, shutting off from people and scenarios which are not serving you can seem cold from an outside point of view.
That said, sometimes it is absolutely necessary. There are times when you need to heal, times when you are stuck, or overwhelmed, or in pain. Your mental health should always be a priority. As they say:
“You cannot pour from an empty cup”.
You know when you are in need of some hardcore self-care.
Take it and don’t be sorry!
10 self-care ideas for unapologetic badasses
Trust your instincts
This is such a massively underrated practice: Your instincts are there for a reason!
Now, there are schools of thought that suggest that humans have evolved to such a point that we no longer have instincts. Pah.
We may bury them well, we may ignore them, but that doesn’t mean they are not there. Fundamentally our instincts exist to keep us alive – ie when presented with danger it is our natural impulse to run. (Because duh…)
Ever had a gut feeling, good or bad? Sometimes, for no obvious reason, you just know something is right or wrong… If you have a particularly strong feeling about something, then trust yourself. You are your own best guide in life. You know deep down what is right for you. This is self-care at its most literal.
Trust your gut. These feelings have your back.
(The only exceptions to this are the unnecessary instinctive hangovers from our primitive pack days, which leads us nicely to my next point…)
Don’t try to fit in
There was a time when it was imperative to our survival as a species that we ‘fit in’
There is safety in numbers. To survive in a pack we would have relied upon this fact, and to be in any way different from the norm would have had us singled out and shunned, leaving us vulnerable to all manner of scary beasties and scenarios.
This is now. We don’t need to fit in to survive anymore. Any urge we feel to please others is simply a leftover instinct to not die! (Again, because duh…)
People need people – we need companionship and love and the warm embrace of those we care about and who care about us.
But that is the difference. THOSE WHO CARE.
Do NOT worry yourself about the thoughts and opinions of those who don’t! These are not your people.
You will not die if you don’t meet their approval. We’ve come a long way, and you get to choose your own pack. Cool huh?
Be kind. You are doing alright! Always treat yourself with care and leniency. If you wouldn’t say it to a close friend, then don’t say it to yourself!
No negative self-talk! You are amaaaaazing. Got it?
You need to tell yourself every damn day that you are worthy. That you are a God/dess. That you matter. Have nothing but the utmost respect for yourself and live every day with your head held high.
Say what you feel
“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind”
There is nothing to be gained from hiding who you are. Obviously, I’m not suggesting you unleash your inner Cruella DeVille…(although, sometimes…) use your best judgement – don’t say what you feel if what you feel is venomous and uncalled for, but you know what I mean:
In those situations when you are called upon to stand up for yourself or can rightly offer a point of view, then do so!
Don’t be a wallflower! Speak your piece!
Related reading: How to find yourself with Slow Living
Own your space
Stand proud and fill the space you are in. Don’t shrink. Stand up tall, look people in the eye. Be positive and exude confidence, even when you don’t feel it. It’ll drive the haters crazy….
Dream BIG…Dream your dream. What is it that matters most to you?
And remember that BIG can mean anything here…
Consider person A: They know their dreams are BIG. They have a plan and a goal, they want to achieve all the things.
Now let’s examine person B. Person B just wants a simple life. They don’t consider this to be a BIG dream. But it is their dream. And that’s what makes it HUGE!
You might not want to make a tonne of money, or travel the world, or change history – you may be totally content to just live simply and peacefully in your own happy little bubble.
And it’s your bubble dammit!
YOUR dream. That is what living a big life is all about.
What does it mean to you to dream big? What is your dream, your vision of perfection? Cultivate that and let it bloom. Don’t let anybody else sway you from your vision.
Related reading: Intentional Living – Live a Life that’s True to You!
Just say no
Know when enough is enough.
Know when to say “no!”
Be that to requests, invitations or demands on your time. You have the right to say no to what doesn’t serve you. Sometimes this will be hard, sometimes easy, but saying NO can be one of the most powerful ways to practice self-care.
Let go of what you can’t control
“If it can be solved there is no need to worry, and if it can’t be solved worry is of no use.”
Let’s take a closer look at this:
Stay away from drama and negativity
Don’t allow yourself to be dragged into other people’s dramas. Sometimes there is just no winning. Sometimes people just wanna be dark and stay locked up in their own drama. Maybe they like it that way. But you don’t have to join them. Rise up and shine!
Nourish your own needs
Do what you need to do (yes, you go run that hot bath and light those candles now if you want!) Take the time you need. Allow yourself time just for you. Journal, dance, laugh, chill out, paint, go for a run, whatever floats your boat. Do it whenever you need to.
Self-care isn’t selfish. It’s the way back to you.
So, a quick recap, you awesome thing, you…
- Trust your instincts. They are there for a reason.
- Don’t try to fit in. You can choose your own tribe!
- Respect yourself. Be kind to yourself. You are worthy.
- Say what you feel. It’s OK to stand up for yourself and say what’s on your mind, truly.
- Own your space. If you don’t feel confident, fake it ’til you make it!
- Dream big. Whatever that means to you…
- Just say no. Nobody can do all the things! Just. Stop.
- Let go of what you can’t control. Don’t waste your precious time stressing over things you can’t do anything about.
- Stay away from drama and negativity. Don’t let others drag you into their doom!
- Nourish your own needs. Do what you must do for you.
You got this. I believe in you!