You were born for so much more than this!
It feels like the world is spinning far too quickly most days, doesn’t it? There is so much to do: ballet class, rehearsals, soccer practice, and music lessons. We are bombarded by bright lights and photoshopped faces telling us all of the things we need to buy to make our lives better and easier. We are owned by our possessions having to spend countless hours maintaining these things and working unfulfilling, soul-crushing jobs to be able to afford it all. These things meant to bring us joy bring us nothing of the sort! It makes Bill’s words feel disgustingly true:
— To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury
— Macbeth (Act 5, Scene 5, lines 17-28)
Life doesn’t have to be this way!
We were not born to work, consume, pay taxes, and die!
We were born for greatness and joy and abundance!
How do we slow down and find the sacred in this world? I think it starts with small steps and self care. When we start with ourselves we can care for others and if we neglect ourselves we have nothing left to give. I often tell my kids when they ask me why I’m having a bad day that my tank is empty like a car and I just need something to fill it. They hug me and kiss me and that helps more than they can possibly understand. We need to stop looking at self care as a decadence and start seeing it as a necessity! Banish that inner soccer coach telling you to suck it up and walk it off! You can’t get anywhere on an empty tank so let’s fill ’em up!
It is important that we always put ourselves first because if we do not we not we will not be able to care for others.
- Eat well
- Drink plenty of water
- Be active
- Take the time for self care
Self care can look different for everyone and that’s ok. This is all about taking time for you! These are suggestions and not an exhaustive list by any means:
- read a book
- take a long bath
- put on your jam and dance
- knitting or crocheting
- take yourself on a date for coffee or tea or a fab dinner and movie
- a long hot shower that empties the tank
- learn to play an instrument
- go running
- hit the gym
- join a book club
- take a walk in the forest
- go antiquing
- actually try something you’ve pinned on Pinterest
- try something new from your bucket list
- catch up with an old friend
- pamper yourself with a facial
- get a massage
- lay in the grass
- cut or buy flowers for yourself
- eat your favorite food
- build something
Notice that the things on this list are mindful-not one mention of Netflix and chill.
When we take the time to care for ourselves we need to be present in the moment. Life is happening right now and we need to experience it. When we get caught up in the constant need to perform better, produce more, work faster, and all of the other demands of our society we are missing out on life!
Sometimes self-care can be a simple little act just for you whilst in the midst of everything else. Don’t rush through the things that are just for you. As you brush your hair take the time to experience the feeling of the brush on your scalp, the smoothness of your hair, the sound of your hair rustling. As you apply lip stick or lip balm feel the way it glides across your lips, look at yourself in the mirror and try appreciate your face the way the people who love you do. Take a moment to anoint yourself with your favorite essential oils.As we entered the forest last weekend I anointed myself with a blend called Present Time-I did not want to be anywhere but there with my family at that moment.
The children and I practice mindfulness together. Sometimes we use mindfulness apps, sometimes we play music and I guide them, sometimes it is just a minute of silence in nature. When we find stillness and take inventory of our senses we become more fully aware and more connected and grounded. For us this means finding the sacred in our lives. Notice I did not say “our family life” or “our leisure life” or “work life” or anything like that because there is only this one life and we must live it completely and mindfully and then we will discover the sacred has been inside us and surrounding us all along!