“And now let us welcome the new year, full of things that never were.” Rainer Maria Rilke
It’s that time of year where we start to think about all the accomplishments from the past year and start trying to identify all of our goals for this new year. It’s also a time where we want to think about renewing a commitment to self-care and healthier habits.
There are 31 days in January and a new way to explore self care can be had in each one. I write here, and often elsewhere, about how to cultivate a gratitude practice of sorts, finding ways to carve out time for mindfulness or self care in one’s busy routine, and about ways to identify what it would take to up your own “joy quotient.”
But what if we all took a moment to practice more self care every day, not just in the first quarter of each new year when people re-up their gym membership, maybe take an interest in eating healthier or sign up for a new and inspiring class?!
How about you make your own INSPIRATION STATION (stay tuned for more on these!) and find ways to incorporate self-care and things that inspire you personally in your everyday life. This can take whatever form you design.
As I look at my email inbox and other social media, I see a huge emphasis on new planners and calendars and on new habits trending this time of year. Calm Moment website recently had a post on a Self Care Challenge, which intrigued me.
The real challenge is to do this type of thing (and I speak as someone who needs to remember herself,) in April or September, not just in January and not necessarily to post it online if you don’t choose to.
For some of us, self-care is doing something new and creative every day. If this is you, please feel free to email your creative ideas to [email protected] for future inclusion in upcoming creative self-care posts and programs. For others, this takes the form of walking in nature, spending time with friends, drawing a warm bath or taking a break from all screens.
In building the “house of yourself,” a good foundation begins with self-care and an attitude of gratitude, to use a cliché. This means trying to focus on things that are also going right, not just on the ill family member(s,) the stressful teenager, the work that needs to get done and the receipts that need to be found for accounting purposes, etc.
If I do this, I remember that today, for example, I spoke with a good friend, reminded myself not to call someone who is an energy drain, I praised myself for something good that I did and was proud of, I remembered to talk kinder to myself about the situation that cannot be changed at the moment, and I tried to nip the ‘bad-talk-radio-in-the-back-of-my-mind-worry-worry-place’ that went down the rabbit hole of what could go wrong with a situation that currently has many moving parts. Nip, tuck, out the mind it went.
And I was calmer in the end, even though it wasn’t “fixed.” I walked a few blocks, went to swim, went to work, ate some good chocolate and finished some things that were on my to-do list. And here’s the key…I allowed myself to feel good about these things.
In the self-care challenge of your own mind and making, remember to pat yourself on the back for all the good things you do do for yourself each day. And continue to do these things so you stay healthy in mind, body, spirit and in all ways throughout the year.
Stay tuned for an upcoming post on a great way to catalog this past year’s (2018) victories and set out your goals for the New Year 2019!
With best wishes to all of you for joy in your life!