Embrace the Art of Self-Care for Increased Self-Regulation and Resilience
It’s amazing how often I hear that people don’t have the time to do self-care, when their lives literally depend on it.
I’m not sure if they look at self-care as a luxury – like having a spa day or laying on a chaise eating bonbons – that they shouldn’t have. But really, in this day and age to not prioritize self-care, when it at the very least increases resilience?
I look at self-care as a duty and a responsibility to ensure our wellbeing and our ability to show up with our best self and create the relationship and life we desire. It is our duty to embrace the art of self-care.
When we embrace self-care as part of our daily responsibilities, we experience a shift in how we prioritize, how we approach our day, and how we are able to create the time for it.
A rich self-care practice ensures we:
- Optimize our functioning and wellbeing - health, vitality, energy, mood, focus, and bandwidth.
- Are grounded and connected with our self, are solid in our core, and operate with authenticity.
- Are in alignment with our purpose, and are creative, progressive, and productive.
When we invest on ourselves in this way, we are showing ourselves love and compassion. Nurturing. We have our own back. We are there for ourselves, we don’t abandon ourselves.
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It is very interesting to witness that the partners that suffer or struggle the most, feel overwhelmed and unsupported, and complain that their partner are not there for them enough – are the partners who least focus on having their own back. They focus on what the other is doing or not doing for them, as opposed to what they are doing for themselves.
The focus on the other triggers them, making the whole thing even more challenging and self-care even more important for its self-regulatory properties.
When partners don’t approach their day with intentionality and self-love (self-care) and rush into their day putting out fires and allowing themselves to be pulled in 100 different directions, they will get banged about and thrown off what they want to accomplish. This is one of the meanest ways for us to go about our day and to treat ourselves, second only to beating ourselves up with our own thinking.
We want to be kind and nice to ourselves, so that we can attend to becoming the best version of ourself and showing up with our best, authentic self, more and more consistently. So we can show up well to create our best relationship and best life – our successful relationship and meaningful life. So we can have our best human experience.
When we invest in ourselves with a rich self-care practice, we are more regulated, contained, grounded, patient, responsive, motivated, happy, compassionate, present, peaceful, resourceful, enthusiastic, appreciative, open, flexible, solid, secure, sensitive, sensible, joyful, forgiving, giving, generous, and so much more.
It behooves us to take care of ourselves to have a real good life.
I get that making time for self-care might feel frivolous when we have what seem like more important to-dos on our agenda. I can still fall into this misconception sometimes when I create very ambitious agendas. Believe me, I get it. When one is a super-achiever, one can be one’s own worst enemy.
But I challenge you to give this a serious try, for when you realize that you can actually be more productive in less time with more ease and joy, help your relationship, and raise amazing children, then you get hooked!
You can start slow - you don’t have to flip the switch and start with radical and extreme self-care. There is a whole range, a spectrum in embracing the art of self-care. Your self-care practice is what you make of it and what you want it to be.
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- I have my basics that I totally miss and feel the impact should I skip them for some reason.
- Then I add another layer as I’m willing to create the time for it.
- And then I can really step it up when I feel the need for more or just for kicks to take things to the next level.
I know that when one is struggling, it’s very challenging to even think about this, never mind taking action toward implementing even the simplest activity.
The key to get over the hump is in proactively and preemptively expanding our mindset, taking responsibility for our wellbeing, and tweaking our daily routine so the self-care practice becomes automatic. This is the art of self-care.
Your self-care practice can include any activity that recharges, restores, rejuvenates, and gives you joy. Activities that reconnect you to your higher self are the best. These tend to give the most bang for the investment. They usually fall within a mindfulness practice.
The activities can be physical, mental, social, and spiritual and can take on any form. The key is to break from the usual noise and to intentionally do something for yourself. Some activities give you little value and positive impact, while others are super rich. More is not necessarily better. It’s up to you create the flavor of your practice and decide how much you want to invest in it and what benefits you are looking for.
A rich self-care practice improves vitality, youthfulness, longevity, happiness, connection, love, and success. It’s up to you how you want to tackle your life - do you want to struggle or flow with ease?
Embracing the art of self-care ensures you do you, your relationship, and your life effortlessly, gracefully, and joyfully.
Assignment: Make a commitment to up-level your self-care practice, to embrace the art of self-care.
- Make a list of activities that interest you in the four categories: physical, mental, social, and spiritual. Be open to different things to create a rich repertoire.
- Take a look at your daily routine and carve out some time to integrate an activity.
- Select something new or that you’ve been trying to add into your lifestyle from your list and add it to your carved-out time.
- Here is a self-love meditation to add to your mindfulness practice.
Having a self-care practice doesn’t have to be challenging. You just need to want it and prioritize it.
Emma K. Viglucci, LMFT is the Founder and Director of Metropolitan Marriage & Family Therapy, PLLC, a private practice that specializes in working with couples. She is the creator of the MetroRelationship™ philosophy and the Successful Couple Strategy™ that help couples succeed at their relationship and their life. To stay connected with her and receive weekly connection notes in your inbox with personal development and relationship enrichment insights and strategies, visit: www.metrorelationship.com.
Have more questions? Follow up with the expert herself.
Founder, Clinical Director & Supervisor
Metropolitan Marriage & Family Therapy, PLLC
I've been in the mental health field in varying capacities for the past 20+ years. I'm the Founder and Director of MetroRelationship.com a psychotherapy and coaching practice specializing in working with busy professional and entrepreneurial couples who are struggling getting on the same page and feeling connected. Our Team at MetroRelationship.com helps couples create a radiant and authentic relationship and meaningful life by becoming a strong partnership and increasing their connection, intimacy, and fun. I... Continue Reading
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