This week, 12 to 18 November, is officially ‘Self Care Week’. It’s a week to put your self first and to prioritise what it is that you need to optimise your mental and physical needs. It’s almost a paradox that, while we are good at looking after others, the thought of self-care is an alien concept. Yet, more and more of us are suffering from high levels of stress, putting in more and more hours at work and are indulging in business which manifests itself as rushing around despite the fact that it ends up making us feel worse.
Self-care is about you believing and acting on the fact that we all need it. Self-care is not about self-indulgence. Perish the thought. It’s about taking the time and making the effort to get yourself in better shape, physically and mentally. Only by being the ‘best you’ can you be the best for others.
It can start with small steps, literally. For example, I gave up my Gym membership in the Summer and started walking instead. I walked for about 2 to 3 hours everyday through Central London. You don’t even need access to the countryside to enjoy walks. That is an English obsession which can be dispensed with. I made the best of the Heat Wave by being out in it rather than being stuck in a Gym. I shed pounds in more than one way by doing this. Cancelling my Gym membership felt like a liberating experience because half the time I lived with the guilt of not actually going to it.
Since the onset of the cold weather I have started exercising at home to exercises featured on You Tube. Good old Jane Fonda’s video from the 1980s still works for me. The choice of exercise videos are plentiful. I often listen to motivational Ted Talks on You Tube which helps me deal with anxiety related issues.
The overarching point is that self-care is about awakening your self realisation that you alone are responsible for your own wellbeing which is crucial to your existence. Taking steps towards self-care begins at home and need not cost money.