Self-Care is Self-Love

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As human beings, we are taught to care for one another, to look out for our fellow neighbors, and to give back and pay it forward. These are all very kind and noble gestures to offer and qualities to espouse, indeed, but somewhere along the line, we forget to include ourselves in the equation. We come to believe that giving attention to ourselves, means taking it away from others. We think it is “selfish” or “narcissistic” to place focus on our own needs and desires. This couldn’t be further from the truth! In fact, by taking the time to address our own personal necessities, we find that we are much better able to attend to the necessities of others.
Self-care encompasses many different things and can include many different aspects of our lives. In considering our bodily needs, we want to maintain a proper schedule of medical care, eat healthy and nutritious foods, get plenty of good, quality sleep, exercise daily, and attend to our personal grooming. Keeping our mental, emotional and spiritual health in check, is also paramount in providing proper self-care. Engaging in meditation and/or prayer practices, socializing with friends, family and colleagues, seeking professional help in the form of therapy, if necessary, and providing ourselves with some regular downtime or alone time, are all things that fall under this umbrella. People are complex, and as such, so are the things we require, in order to be happy and fulfilled.
It is vitally important and integral for our health and well-being, to make self-care a daily priority. When we fail to address our needs sufficiently, we begin to falter, and can start to feel frustrated, depressed and angry about our circumstances. When this occurs, it is virtually impossible to provide the loving care we naturally look to give to those around us; there simply isn’t anything left of ourselves to give. In keeping our proverbial “cup filled”, we can generously and successfully share what we can, with others. “Love thy neighbor as thyself” is a lesson we need to heed and embrace, without reservation, and one that will ensure that everyone on our list of people we love is well attended to!