Do you help others before you help yourself? Imagine this… a pitcher full of water (the pitcher represents you and the water represents your vitality or energy). Now, picture a bunch of glasses and each one is labeled someone or some responsibility in your life (mom, dad, brother, sister, kids, grandma, friends, work, parenting duties, household, etc). Now picture pouring all of your water into all those different glasses until there’s none left in the pitcher.
Now, it’s the end of the day and you’re empty and you have no water(energy) left for yourself.
This is what we do day in and day out. We take care of others without ever taking care of ourselves first.
Self-Care is vitally important to our self-preservation. We can suffer from extreme fatigue, exhaustion, and burnout if we are not actively filling up our own cup. Self-Care simply put is doing the things that make you feel good and NOT doing the things that don’t. It’s listening to your body and noticing where your energy is at.
Some Self-Care ideas to maximize your potential:
-reading a good book
-doing a morning yoga
-brushing AND flossing your teeth
-going to bed early instead of staying out late
-going on a walk
-giving yourself a foot rub
-giving yourself a hug (we underestimate the power of our own physical touch!)
-taking a bath (or shower, with candles!)
-positive affirmations (I love me, I belong, I am worthy, I am beautiful)
-cooking yourself a nice meal instead of getting fast-food
If you’re new to this idea, it’s hard to make these small sacrifices at first because it may feel like you’re being selfish or going against what everyone else thinks is “normal”. Some people may comment with “You’re being selfish”. It’s not selfish, it’s actually quite the opposite. When we give first to others, we leave ourselves nothing. But when we treat ourselves kindly and fill our cups, we have more energy to give to those around us and we feel like there is an abundance to go around! That’s pretty self-less if you ask me.
Remember the airline stewardess who demonstrates how to put our oxygen mask on first before helping those nearest us? That’s because we can’t help our loved ones if we have no air to breathe. Think of self-care as your oxygen from this day forward.
Make a life changing decision today to start filling up your cup FIRST and then giving to others.
Feel free to contact me for more Self-Care tips.
Kylie Chebahtah, BSN, RN, HWNC-BC