Friends, I want to encourage you to take a breath and find as many ways to take care of yourself as you reasonably can. Today, we’re talking about Self-Care.
Collectively as a country, we’re experiencing massive amounts of anxiety, overwhelm, and grief. This is hard – really hard.
Going into my 3rd week of virtual sessions with clients and FaceTime chats with friends, one thing has stood out ->> We are weary, emotionally tanked, and mentally exhausted from multiple spikes of adrenaline.
- Hear something new on the news – adrenaline spike.
- We see a news update on Twitter – adrenaline spike.
- Talk to someone we love who’s struggling – adrenaline spike.
Another way to describe these spikes is a Fight or Flight response.
This is a natural response to danger and is what’s kept us alive for centuries, but when the threat feels inescapable, uncertain, and/or completely unknown this stress response that’s meant to keep us alive –
- Zaps our energy.
- Slows higher-level cognitive functioning.
- Weakens our immune system.
Recently, I’ve really been wrestling with feeling like I’m aloud to focus on myself. Thinking about self-care felt self-indulgent, or more simply put – selfish. So, I tried avoiding it for a beat, focused on work and things that felt more responsible. When that didn’t work – I’d zone out in front of the TV with an extra cup of coffee or glass of wine.
Being busy and being distracted are two of the major ways I avoid feeling overwhelmed, and deeper than overwhelmed – I felt completely helpless.
The only thing that I can easily access when I’m struggling is breath. So before my sessions with clients last week I put a reminder in my phone to breathe deeply for 3mins – in my nose for 4 counts & out my mouth for 4 counts. It grounded me.
From that place I realized that EVERY SINGLE PERSON I spoke to (client, friend, family member) was dealing with the EXACT SAME THING.
One of the great tricks our fear likes to play on us is to convince us that it’s somehow unique, special, or separate from everyone else’s experience.
Now more than ever we need self-care.
Our adrenaline has spiked a hundred times over and we’re navigating a world-wide collective state of Fight or Flight.
We’re washing our hands, using hand sanitizer, and grocery shopping with face-masks. Now it’s time to care for our minds and hearts. And if you’re in anyway struggling with that concept – I get it! I really do.
Maybe for you, self-care wont look like an at-home facial and epsom salt bath. But one thing that is always accessible to you ->> your breath.
Deep breathing can slow the heartbeat and lower blood pressure.
When we’re engaging with self-care, we’re more likely to decrease the shallow breathes we take when we’re tense, and breathe deeply from our diaphragm.
If you need some guidance to uncover what self-care looks like for you, here are some resources for you:
Be gentle with yourself this week.