This opportunity to write on the topic of self-care comes at an especially overwhelming time in my life. As a therapist, I often ask clients how they will care for themselves between our sessions. This past week, after a taxing therapy session of my own, my counselor asked me the same thing. We brainstormed activities that are restful, relaxing, or fulfilling. Many of us would agree that yoga, reading, sleep, meditation, writing and many more activities make the list — check “yes” to these and you’re in self-care heaven.
But what if self-care can also mean checking “no”?
For example, could taking care of ourselves also look like setting healthy boundaries with co-workers? Or giving ourselves grace to skip the gym? Or maybe even allowing ourselves to miss our spouse’s volleyball game after a long day?
In the end, self-care is not just different for each person; it’s also different for each circumstance. Sometimes we need an uplifting night of fellowship with friends; sometimes we need a restful night of space to be alone. Sometimes we need movement in our bodies to feel more alive; sometimes we need a break from movement to recoup.
Jesus said to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment.” I believe loving the Lord with all our hearts means giving him our best version of ourselves. Could it be possible that loving the Lord with our best also means loving others, and ourselves, in the same way?
If these things are true, maybe a self-care routine that honors both “yes” and “no” is the first place to start. If you are navigating a stressful season and would like to schedule with a therapist to work toward feeling more balanced, we would be honored to partner with you. To schedule an appointment, give us a call at 615-591-5262.