When you crack an egg into the food compost caddy and then proceed to drop the salt grinder into your omelette, you know it’s not a day to hope for great things.
Today was one of those days. Day one of my cycle, a day when, as a rule, I tend to be clumsier than usual and when it’s not a great idea to expect too much of myself.
It’s a day as well when I’m reminded of the importance of taking exquisitely good care of myself.
With a history of adrenal fatigue resulting from a prolonged period of stress and not taking great care of myself i.e. eating all the wrong things, doing very little exercise and staying in a job I hated for far too long, you’d think self care would be top of my to do list.
And yet somehow it still isn’t. It’s like I think that now I’m almost back to normal I can go back to pushing myself as hard as I used to without being extra vigilant with my self care.
And, when I say self care, I don’t mean bubble baths and painting my nails, I mean eating food that’s nourishing for my body and my mind, getting plenty of restorative sleep, meditating and getting plenty of exercise that nourishes my body.
Which got me thinking. Why is it we seem to think that the route out of a period of poor self care doesn’t need to be anywhere near as intensive as the route in?
We’re exhausted after months of working overtime and surviving on minimal sleep and we think that one good night’s sleep will remedy that.
We spend months if not years doing barely any exercise and yet we expect our bodies to become superhero-esque after just a few weeks training.
After years spent filling our faces with food that has barely any nutritional content because fast food suited our busy schedule, we expect a week or two of healthy eating and a juice cleanse to reverse any effects our poor bodies are experiencing.
And, if we’re women, we expect ourselves to carry on as normal while we’re shedding the lining of our uterus!
The truth is we need to treat our bodies with a level of care that’s proportionate to the tasks they’re carrying out, whether it be undergoing a prolonged period of stress, healing from a cold or shedding a significant amount of blood in just a few days.
Our bodies are amazing things but they have their limits.
Self care is how you ignite your power
The amount of care we take of our bodies is directly proportionate to our level of power.
If you’re happy to plod along in second gear then by all means, don’t worry too much about investing time and effort in taking care of your body and mind.
If, however, you have big plans for your life and know you’ll need every ounce of energy you can muster to achieve them, then self care must be part of your strategy. Instead of viewing it as a luxury that’s taking time away from other activities it has to be viewed as a necessary part of your daily schedule, a priority in fact.
Just as you’d factor in travel and work time, it’s also vital to factor in plenty of time to sleep, to exercise, to prep and eat nutritious food and to rest.
“But how will I get everything done?” I hear you cry. I get it, I’ve been there and I still am to a certain degree.
Perhaps you won’t be able to fit 96 hours worth of to do list into 24 hours any more, in fact you definitely won’t. But why were you trying to live like that in the first place?
Surely a more effective strategy is to take great care of yourself along the way so that you avoid crashing and burning and spending months or years operating at half your capacity. Trust me, that route is expensive, time consuming and to be avoided if at all possible.
It really is time to redefine what it means to be powerful and how we get there. It’s not about how many hours you work, it’s about how effective you are when you’re working AND how present you are when you’re not.
True power comes from living as the fullest version of yourself and you can’t do that when your tank is half empty.
What could you do starting today to improve your self care, to start filling up your tank rather than only ever emptying it?
More sleep? Half an hour more exercise? Planning your meals for the week ahead?
Don’t get caught in the “I must change everything right now” trap. Every big change is made up of lots of small, incremental actions.
Pick one thing that you’re 90% confident you can do and start with that. It may seem too easy, but it’ll help build your confidence in your ability to make changes and it’ll motivate you to do more.
What one thing could you do?
Pick something and start today. The sooner you start, the sooner you’ll see results.
If you feel like you need some help with this, I’m your woman. As well as being a life coach I’m also a wellbeing expert. I firmly believe that you cannot access your full power unless both mind and body are firing on all cylinders. If you’re ready to thrive in all areas of your life and go from feeling powerless and trapped to embodying the potently powerful woman you truly are, let’s talk.
Click here to book your 45 minute discovery call to find out more about how we can work together.
With Love and Devotion Xx