Over the past few years, especially on social media, self care has become a growing trend on the Internet, and in real life.
As we begin to learn more about mental health and the importance of taking care of ourselves, #selfcare is an ever-evolving fad. A common misconception that we have about it however, is that self care is as simple as a facial mask and a bubble bath. Sure, taking that time to treat yourself and spend alone time is caring for yourself, but the journey of true self care does not end there. It is not that simple.
Self care is so much more than an Instagram post about your night in with yourself. It doesn’t just happen overnight. Like any relationship, you have to maintain it and work at it constantly. It doesn’t end with a good book and a glass of red wine. Maybe it starts there, but that is only a fraction of the journey.
I think to understand what self care really is, we have to treat ourselves the way we treat our loved ones. I am constantly reminding my friends and family: slow down, stay hydrated, fill your body with nutrition, say no to things that will take you away from yourself. This is me, caring for them. Caring for yourself is quite the same. And while one night in to meditate with a cup of tea is extremely valuable and progressive, we should be aware that it does not solve everything.
Like I mentioned before, self care is not something you do once; it is an everlasting cycle. If date nights with our significant other become a regular occurrence, then date nights with ourselves should happen just as — if not more — frequently. Much like a houseplant, we must continue to nurture ourselves, day in and day out. We must not forget about our own importance. If one day we forget to water our plants, we wouldn’t be hard on ourselves or see it as an absolute setback, we simply would forgive our slip up and try again the next day.
Healing is not a linear process;
we have some great days and some not-so-great days. On the not so great ones, maybe you put a little extra effort in. As long as you remember your great days deserve your attention too. You don’t have to feel low to treat yourself.