Have you ever reached a point where you just didn’t think you could push yourself for one more minute? And yet, you still had two hours left on your shift, or you still had to help children with homework before everybody went to bed? At that point, you are not just tired. You are exhausted.
Self-care is important because our bodies tell us when we have had enough. It’s important because we need to recharge and refresh our minds and our bodies, to be able to do our work, take care of our families, be involved in our community, and do all the other things that are lined up in front of us. It is important because we need to take care of ourselves before we can properly take care of others.
If we don’t practice self-care, we will not have the energy or the focus needed to do our jobs or take care of our family. That point of exhaustion where we don’t think we can do one more thing is often a result of pushing ourselves too hard. What we don’t realize is we may be causing other issues such as hypertension, migraines, insomnia, etc. Self-care helps us to renew the strength in our bodies and to re-energize the focus in our minds.
Exhaustion is not just about the body. Often our minds will shut down because we just can’t think anymore. Self-care helps us to get back in touch with our inspiration and our motivation for the work we do. When we take the time to shut down, to go for a walk or get some exercise, to get a massage or just a nice hot bath, to meditate and reflect in solitude and silence, to do some yoga or just a few stretching exercises, we are able to re-center our minds and find some balance in our stressful lives.
Self-care is important because if we do not take the time to do it, we could be jeopardizing our mental or our physical health. When we run our minds and our bodies to the point of not being able to think or act anymore, it can result in a number of symptoms created by excessive stress levels.
Take care of yourself. Yes, you do have time. Yes, you do have the resources. (Cheryl Richardson’s book is a great book you can use to get yourself off to a great start.) Yes, it is absolutely necessary to your health and well-being.