I find that the things that you love the most are also the things that test you the most and offer you a glimpse into the story you tell about yourself. Our children are a perfect example. The inadequacy that parenting our children brings necessarily invites a story. Sometimes one that is pretty self-shaming.
For many of us self-care is synonymous with things like trips to the spa or once a year vacation and is permissioned perhaps as only an intermittent break from the stress of our everyday lives. But I believe that a habit of true self-care is essential to how we stay present in our lives, how we resource ourselves to make better decisions and create the sense of agency necessary to make changes. It is also the well from which we draw our energy to give and care for others. But how many of us are running on empty all the time between work and home life? How often is taking care of yourself the thing that comes last or the first thing to go when your schedule goes sideways?
As you can probably guess from some of my blog posts, I’m a big proponent of practicing good self-care. And there are many different ways we can practice self-care; regular exercise, meditation, a healthy diet, and one of my personal favorites (and the subject of my REST blog post)- a habit of good sleep. But over the years, I have come to realize there is another really important aspect of self-care that many of us don’t exercise frequently enough that is critical not only to our health but to our enjoyment of our lives, and that is practicing healthy boundaries with unhealthy people.