What is self-care?

Self-care is a hot topic in this season of life.  Everyone seems to recognize they need it and want it but many aren’t sure what it means or how to do it.  The keyword within this compound word is care.

care-

noun

  1. the provision of what is necessary for the health, welfare, maintenance, and protection of someone or something.
  2. serious attention or consideration applied to doing something correctly or to avoid damage or risk.

verb

  1. feel concern or interest; attach importance to something.
  2. look after and provide for the needs of.

Self-care activities are actions taken for your personal health, welfare, maintenance, and protection.

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About 3 years ago I equated self-care as getting a massage, pedicure, facial, or indulging in my candlelit bubble baths (even during my son’s 2 pm naptime).  Although I still love those things and my long hot morning shower still gives me life, I now define self-care as my personal quality assurance measures.  

quality assurance-

noun

the maintenance of a desired level of quality in a service or product, especially by means of attention to every stage of the process of delivery or production.

I started to think of myself as a product of a higher power.  Having that in mind, I began to view myself as a vessel created to provide a particular service to a prechosen market.  Me being me, I wanted the level of quality of my services to not only meet the consumers’ demand but my manufacturer’s expectations. 

Personal Quality

We don’t know the role we’re called to play in every situation, interaction, or divine moment. But, we do know that we have to be ready and stay ready to be used.

Labors of life can come like a thief in the night.

We are in the best position to birth the best version of ourselves when we have completed the actions that help us maintain our optimal level of energy, peace, and mind-body balance.

Self-awareness comes when we’re able to self-assess ourselves. 

Reflective Questioning

As a nurse, I create care plans, as a doula and childbirth educator, I develop birth plans.  And throughout my time caring for an individual, I’m required to constantly assess to decide if what we’re doing is helping, harming, or wasting time.  Assessing helps us identify discrepancies and if found, we revise the plan.  The point is, don’t just look after and provide for the needs of our patients, we make plans to give serious attention or consideration to doing something correctly or to avoid damage or risk.  We don’t just wing it.   If you think about it, the same model exists in business.  They create policies, procedures, and quality assurance plans.  Creating a plan provides you with a direction to ensure you’re addressing your needs in a holistic way.

We are more important than the quality of our products, equipment, and/or services.

My view of self-care changed a couple of years ago when I was asked to create a couple of simple quality assurance policies and procedures for a major birth center.  As I developed the documents and templates, I heard a little voice say, “you’re putting more effort into managing the level of quality produced by this business than you are into managing the level of quality produced by yourself.”

And that’s when I created My Personal Policy, identified My Personal Procedures, and began assessing My Personal Quality by documenting on My Personal Quality Control logs.

Whether we are women managing our household, working outside of the home, or independently sharing our MomNiche, we tend to put more effort into the systems that break us down than the Divine System that keeps us going.  We are 3-dimensional beings and that’s like managing a corporation.  As Aida Cirino-Lee, Holistic Health Practioner, and one of our Peaceful Women put it, become the CEO of your health

START SMALL

Self-Care doesn’t have to be dramatic

Women tell me all the time, “I don’t have time for myself.”

POTTY TIME could still be considered YOUR TIME.

If I can sit a laboring woman on the toilet to relax her pelvis and release her tension to progress labor, surely us nonpregnant women could benefit from our potty-time.

During college, at work, and throughout motherhood, the restroom has helped me renew my energy, reclaim my sanity and my personal quality. 

Quick Centering Moment:

  1.  Sit (on your sitting bones)
  2.  Plant your feet a little wider than your hips
  3.  Straighten your back
  4.  Rollback and drop your shoulders
  5.  Release and Relax your:
    • °Perineum
    • °Lower abdomen
    • °Shoulders (drop ’em low)
    • °Face (jaw & eyebrows)

Take 5-10 deep breaths.

 

Women enter into a season of life where they reflect more, ask questions, and envision a new way of life.

They no longer want to conform to the ways of their old world, they desire change. 

This can be exciting and fearful.

The excitement comes by thinking about what will be birthed on the other side.

The fear comes by thinking about the labor to be experienced between the old and new way of life.

Labor is a marathon, not a sprint.

This is why learning how to care for ourselves is so important.

We’re laboring through life ladies.  It’s normal and it will be ok!

CLICK here to see how we can walk together. 

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