Choose Yourself

I have come to find that many people do not understand the concept of engaging in self-care. In their eyes this concept is a foreign entity. Most people are preoccupied by taking care of others or “being busy” that they often forgot to take care of themselves. When asking people to prioritize things in their lives they often forget to include themselves on that list. How can any of their other priorities get met if they are unavailable to do them? This is typically an “I opener” to most people and challenges them to take a hard look at how they are not putting themselves at the top of the “to do” list.

“I am too busy to fit self -care into my schedule” is the next thing I typically hear from people. I often explain to people that self-care is more of a way of being rather then something else you must fit into your schedule. You must care enough about yourself to incorporate things into your daily routine. In the long run it can prevent you from struggling with things such as illness or psychological stressors that may put your “busy” life to a standstill.

There are several areas in your life that you can engage in self-care: physical, psychological, emotional, spiritual, and professional. I am going to provide a brief break down of activities to give you some ideas of what may be included in each area. Physical: engaging in aerobic activity at least 3xs a week, scheduling preventative medical care, and getting enough sleep. Psychological: say “no” to extra responsibilities, read literature that is unrelated to work, and relaxing your muscles throughout your day. Emotional: play with animals, do something for others, and laugh. Spiritual: spend time in nature, have a gratitude practice, and engage in creative activities. Professional: take time to eat, set limits with clients/colleagues, and have a comfortable workspace. The ideas given are just a small snap shot of what you could be engaging in on a regular basis. If you would like a more extensive list, please reach out to me Contact and I can provide this to you. I also welcome you to make up a list of your own ideas and challenge yourself to incorporate these things into your daily routine. You may already be engaging in some of these concepts but do it on a less consistent basis. Your challenge may include moving the activities from “sometimes” to “frequent.”

I hope that this post has given you some insight into the importance of making yourself a priority. The benefits of doing so are endless. In the big picture, it can help you improve relationships, your productivity and overall happiness in life. A great way to start off on your journey of self-care is attending my Book Club Meet & Greet: Upcoming Events .  You can read what the book club has to offer with my previous blog post Means to Inspire. We will be engaging in self-care activities that cover all areas discussed in this article on a monthly basis. It would be a great first step in making yourself a priority. I challenge you to put yourself at the top of your priority list.

Enjoy Your Journey,
Faith

 

Being Intentional

Intentional is defined as: a thing intended; an aim or plan. This word has been coming up for me in both my personal and professional life recently. Hence, the subject of this weeks blog post!
I have found that exploring your intentions can be very helpful with being mindful of how you react to things in your life. We all have “triggers” from past experiences that we have had in our lifetime. These triggers can cause us to be very reactive allowing our sympathetic nervous system to “take over” and put us into a fight or flight state of mind. This “flooding” of our system often leads us to do and say things that can often be hurtful to our relationships with others. It can also cause us to make choices that may be against our core beliefs and values

Often our intentions grow from our beliefs and values that we have developed through our life experiences. How do we really want to be moving through our life? How can we fine tune these things to move toward being more intentional?  I have found that crafting a personal mission statement is a great way to start the tuning process. I have included an article Personal Mission Statement that gives you some prompts for developing your statement. This statement will grow and change with you as you move through your journey. I often compare it to a guiding star in how you intend to be when interacting with others and how you move through life.

Another exercise, that I recently found, in The Bullet Journal Method is doing a mental inventory. Ask yourself the following questions in 3 separate columns: What are you presently working on?, What should you be working on?, and What do you WANT to be working on? This can help you focus on being more intentional in how you navigate throughout your days.
How does being intentional help you in your relationships? How can it stop you from being reactive? Through the above tasks you will explore how you want to be in life and with others. These exercises can help you be more mindful of your true intentions.  So, when you do get triggered, you will stop and ask yourself how do I choose to be in this moment. Do you want to be reactive or do you want to stay true to your intentions? My hope is that you will utilize your intentions as a guiding light to allow you to stay on the path of your true intent.
How can you keep your intentions in the forefront of your mind? Intentions may present as a word, a value, or an affirmation that starts with “I am.” I recommend that you start your day with re stating your intention to yourself in some manner (meditation, journaling, etc.) Remind yourself daily of your intentions and review your mission statement on a regular basis. You may make changes to your mission statement as you move through your journey of being intentional. Think about what your “I am” statement will be and share in the comments.

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Living with Intention

Enjoy your journey,
Faith