Developing Your Self-Care Toolkit
Self-care: doing the things that make you feel more like yourself – Robyn Conley Downs
Ok, passionate peeps. Let’s talk self-care.
Because how can we even begin to nurture our passions if we aren’t taking care of the mind, body, and soul that are responsible for them? Self-care, in my opinion, is essential for growth. We must learn to slow down a bit (even those of us who may find that hard) so we can put our whole being into the things we love most- our job, our hobbies, our loved ones.
Self-care is particularly essential in the life of performers, mainly because our bodies are our instruments. Healthy eating, stretching, exercising, or any other action a performer takes to maintain their body as a vessels of creativity is also an act of self-care. But sometimes, since after all, we are human, throwing those things out the window can also be an act of self-care.
Since I have been at home in the last few months, I have filled my days with new exercise classes, yoga classes, dance classes, and online seminars that I am fortunate enough to have access to. I really went hard at the start, trying to fill my time as much as I could to avoid the sadness I was feeling. Once the sadness dissapated, I became so connected and committed to every class I was taking…
…Then last week hit. I experienced a total loss of motivation. I knew I should get up and move my body (because I am SO lucky to have that ability and option in my life) but every time I would think about taking a class, I couldn’t do it. My body didn’t want to, my mind didn’t want to. Maybe it was the nice, hot weather that slowed me down, allergies, that sense of “summer” finally being here and getting a “break.” I don’t know. All I know is that I wanted nothing to do with all the things that had been getting me through the last 2-3 months.
Then I took a moment and reminded myself of all we have been hearing in those 2-3 months. This isn’t a productivity contest. This isn’t about how much you are doing right now. Don’t push yourself. Don’t do it! Recognizing when your mind and body need a break should be another major part of your self-care routine! Slowing down is just as important as meeting your appropriate edge.
What is most important is YOUR interpretation of self-care, YOUR version, and YOUR implementation of it in YOUR life and schedule in a way that serves you.
I’m here to offer some suggestions, based on my own taste, and the tastes of the people I know who so kindly offered me their suggestions! Take what you need, leave what you don’t!
Things To Add To Your Self-Care Toolkit
- Develop Your Own Spa Routine!
- Light up those Bath and Body Works candles I know you’ve got, take a warm shower or bath, complete your skin care routine using your fav products, and do a face mask! I personally LOVE doing my skin care routine and painting my nails!
- Stream Your Favorite Shows and Movies (And Find Some News Ones!)
- It is a damn shame Friends isn’t on Netflix anymore, but take comfort in watching those old TV shows and movies that just make you feel good! Grey’s, Grease, and Because I Said So are some of my favorite feel-good watches! Also investigate some new shows you might love to binge! I just binged Little Fires Everywhere and Killing Eve on Hulu!
- Write! Journal! Read!
- It can be so freeing to get your thoughts and words out of your mind and onto paper! If writing or journaling is your thing, maybe set aside 10 mintues at the beginning or end of your day to set some intentions for yourself or reflect on the day. I’ve recently started using a gratitude journal, and I fill in the prompts at the end of each day! Or if reading someone else’s words to put aside your own thoughts for a while is your jam, set aside that 10 minutes in your day to read!
- Sweat It Out!
- The benefits of exercise are endless, but if you’re anything like me, finding the classes or types of workouts that suit you is extremely important in finding the motivation to do it. If dance is your thing, try out dance cardio or barre classes (two things I am really into these days)! Yoga is also a great if you are looking for something more low-impact that will still tone up your body and help you sweat it out! Yoga With Adrienne on YouTube is a MUST! BUT: don’t overdo it and run yourself ragged!
- If you’re a “planner” like me, organizing is like self-care for the brain. Getting my week together in my journal or my planner helps me tremendously so I don’t feel as overwhelmed when life gets a little crazy. Being able to lay everything out in a pretty and creative way also makes it fun! Bullet journaling is perfect for this (future blog post to come)!
- Get Outside!
- Soak up that vitamin D! Sit on your porch with a cup of tea or coffee, go for a walk, explore some places in nature that you’ve never been before, go for a drive! Stepping away from the computer screen and getting a taste of the sweet outdoors can help remind you there is more to life than any obligations or frustrations!
I hope you are able to take some of these suggestions and apply them to your own self-care routine or begin to develop one if you haven’t already! Please feel free to share if any of these resonated with you!
You only get one body, one mind, one soul- it’s time to take care of them, baby!