Lately I’ve been learning about the importance of looking after yourself.
Being an over achiever from way back, I have always associated hard work with success. That staying up late when what you really need is sleep, means you’re doing a good job, and that relaxing and doing something that is in no way Instagram-worthy is mostly a waste of time.
It’s possibly one of the craziest, but most common afflictions of modern society.
It screams, ‘I’m not good enough’.
It bellows, ‘I have to keep up with ‘the Joneses”
It reeks of fear and self doubt and low self worth.
But it’s really not that obvious (often until you crash in a heap of exhaustion).
So I decided to do myself a favour and try some things out. You know, show myself a little compassion.
Here’s what I’ve got on my to-do list this week:
Take a break from being online
I know I’m not alone when I say that checking my phone has become a compulsion, an addiction. And it has been driving me nuts lately.
I also spend a lot of time on social media (hello, Facebook) because I use it for my business. But there’s a difference between putting dedicated time into using social media to connect with others and just wasting time, fooling yourself into thinking it’s actually work (it’s not).
Stepping away from ‘being connected’ constantly is a HUGE relief.
Letting go of the feelings brought on by FOMO (fear of missing out) is nothing short of refreshing.
And just reminding yourself that retweets and regrams are not the be all and end all of life is a little bit awesome.
Commit an amount of time to being social-media or online-free and see how it feels to get back to real life. Do it, I dare you!
Spend time with loved ones
I’m a huge fan of IRL (in real life) and have been making an effort this week to spend more quality time with the awesome people in my life.
In fact, I went out on Friday for dinner and left my phone at home!
I challenge anyone to come up with something more rewarding and joyful than just BEING with your posse. You know, those people who make you come alive, make you feel your most authentic you, and make you forget about all your cares?
Yeah, those ones (and if you’re having trouble locating those people, time to find them already!)
Reach out to your favourites and make a date to hang out. You’ll be amazed at how good it feels.
I’m spending the weekend with my Fantastic 4 (my parents and my sister) and I’m so excited right now!!
Do ‘nothing’ and appreciate it
On Sunday, my energy was wayyyyyy down. And you know what I did? Nothing.
I have been amping up my stress levels lately, always feeling like I need to be doing SOMETHING. Business stuff, writing stuff, life stuff, house work.
I’d gone back to convincing myself that chilling out was equal to laziness.
We need to remember that sometimes we need time to re-energise or we’ll inevitably burn out. It’s just the way it is. Whoever out there started influencing us to believe that rest time equals deadbeat probably needs a good talking to.
Doing nothing is awesome.
As long as you are mindful about it. Give yourself permission to enjoy it. Reset your system so you can get back to dream chasing with renewed energy.
And enjoy the sweet bliss of appreciating the nothingness.
Give yourself an hour or a morning or a day this week to just do nothing and enjoy it (blankets and good books are optional but excellent additions)
Be okay with not knowing what’s next
Ahhh the killer of happiness. Worrying about the future. Getting angsty about the unknown.
Unless you have a crystal ball or some mad time travelling skills, you’re never truly going to know what’s coming.
The future is murky and wonderful and we will forever be in awe of how it might go. But getting all anxiety-ridden in the wondering what’s next is a recipe for disaster.
Accept that there are things you will see coming and others that you will not.
And be present.
Enjoy what you’re doing right now because there is really no way of knowing what’s around the corner. Sometimes resting easy knowing that is actually comforting (I actually managed to reassure my sister one day by saying to her that the only thing certain in life, is death. It really helped her – believe it or not!!)
What can you find joy in today and try to let go of worrying about the future and just know it’s going to be okay?
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Are you prepared to do yourself a favour and take a little time this week to look after yourself?
If you have any other suggestions or tips that you think would add to taking time and practising some self-compassion, I’d love to hear them in the comments below. And please share this with anyone you think could do with a bit of self-time.