Hello and good day to you. How are you feeling?
Before you give the standard answer of “good thanks”, take a moment to actually think about how you are. How do you feel physically? How are you emotionally? Here’s my example;
Physically I’m feeling a little under the weather and am I’m conscious of a dull ache in my stomach.
Emotionally I’m feeling content. I’ve had a pretty relaxed day. As i reflect on that now i realise i feel physically lighter. Interesting.
It may sound odd, but this is a really simple little exercise to do with yourself on a regular basis. All to often we cruise through our busy lives at a million miles a hour and say we’re fine when asked because it’s our auto-pilot answer,and in truth how do we know the other person is genuinely bothered? But what about those days when you’re not fine. Do you give yourself the same stock answer, or do you acknowledge you aren’t feeling great and accept/deal with it?
For years (and I mean years), I sailed through life ignoring the days I wasn’t OK and kept putting one foot in front of the other. One day it all fell apart.I fell apart. I was burnt out. Emotionally spent. It took a long time (and I’m still learning!) but regulary checking in with how I’m really feeling and giving myself what I really need instead of what I feel I should be doing is as good, if not better than any medicine! I suppose what I’m referring to is Self-Care, which is a bit of a buzz word these days. For those not familiar, it’s just what it sounds like – looking after yourself.
Here are a few examples of small adjustments I’ve made to my thinking as I try to look out for myself as I would a close friend.
Scenario 1: I have 2 hours to myself what do I do?
Old thinking: Housework, there’s no-one home, I’ll crack on with the chores. If I have time I’ll have a cup of tea and chill after. (There is never time left!)
New thinking: I’m feeling really tired. I’m going to settle down and watch some TV and if I fall asleep it’s OK because I need it.
Scenario 2: I’ve had a super stressful few weeks, I’m emotionally drained and just need some downtime.
Old thinking: Don’t be silly, it hasn’t been that stressful! Suck it up and keep going, you’ll be fine.
New thinking: Wow, that was a tough few weeks, well done on getting through it. You deserve a treat. Book that massage in now so you have something to look forward to and get some nice early nights with a good book or that TV series you enjoy.
Final thought: What about you? Are you looking after the ‘me in you’, or are you too busy looking after everyone else? How would the scenarios above play out in your life?