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Why is Self-Care important?

By January 21, 2009 - 12:30am
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Many women are faced with juggling many tasks at once in life, whether we are raising a family, working, caring for a love one, procrastinating, or all of the above, we tend not to think of us first. Self-care does not imply an ego-driven activity, but why do we feel so guilty when we consider a few hours or a weekend away to unwind and recharge?

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I think self-care must be tied into self-worth.

I say this from the point of view of someone who let most of my self-care slip over the years that I was out of the workplace.

I gained weight. Sometimes I didn't get dressed in anything but sweats. Forget "extra" things like lunches with friends or small impulsive splurges -- when I wasn't earning money, I felt like I shouldn't spend it, either.

I wish I understood why working outside the house -- and having external deadlines and external responsibilities -- seems so much more important and "worthwhile" than working inside the house, or having internal deadlines or internal goals and responsibilities. Why do I not care how I look when no one sees me, but I do care when they do? Is that hypocrisy? (I guess in a way it's like making the bed. Why do we make the bed if we're just getting back in it that night, and no one sees it in between?)

I need help with this, because I'm not happy when I feel this way. I'm working now and it helps. But I'm not sure where to start with the overal feeling that I no longer am worth the things I used to be worth. Tell me how I get past this feeling so that I can move on and accomplish some things for myself?

January 23, 2009 - 9:18am

Susanc, you are so right on! I am on the same boat...I am sure that creating a habit of "self-care" will require sticking to a schedule, the same way we do it with other tasks. I signed up for an 8-week Meditation class. It is a 3-hour class and we practice 60' of one technique and 45' of another other each night we meet.

I signed up for this class because I know my body and mind need it. But as I went through the motions, I struggle with letting go of my thoughts and guilt of taking time for me. My mind wandered to the next task in my day or thoughts like these: "are the kids doing their homework?" "Is the caregiver paying attention to my hubby's needs while I am gone?"...were all over my head.

The instructor is a physician who requires this book (the course is for credits from the University): "Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain and Illness" by Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD.

I will share feedback on this book at a later post.

January 22, 2009 - 11:23pm
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