Let’s talk about self-care! This can be a long one since I am letting it all out tonight.
Many people talk about “self-care” as a luxury. Because you most likely have to spend money or time (or probably both) to get it. If you watch or read beauty and lifestyle bloggers they usually talk about self-care by sharing their skincare routines and the spas they go to for this so-called “self-care”. I’m not against that we care ourselves in our unique ways.
But the question is… whatever you do now, does it really give you value or do we really know what self-care means?
I used to spend a lot when I was blinded by this term… People keep on telling me “You need time for yourself”, “you need to buy something for yourself”, ” you should go somewhere for yourself”.
And I ended up getting so many unwanted expenses to the point that I had to borrow money because the self-care I got brought up by the society is not really the one I need.
I got misled by my own choice and there’s really no one to blame. But this topic goes on and on while I notice that the common people answer to this question leads you to a way of spending too much.
However, there are people who also share legit ways to give ourselves the self-care we deserve. The thing though is that our response to those answers is always that “I don’t have time for that”. If it isn’t that fancy enough, we tend to be not so engaged with it, that is why we don’t have time. Maybe I am generalizing it too much but there are a few realizations that I wanted to share. I want to know what your thoughts about it too.
What is self-care to me in the past?
When I was working in an office based job, I am one of the typical guys who spend to eat somewhere and say “It’s just today, it’s payday”. Added by “I need time to detox my brain… Coffee please(then Starbucks)”, tsk! I feel disgusted whenever I remember those moments.
I am really a coffee lover even when I was in high school but being young at that time only allows me to use an instant coffee or a coffee maker. That’s why when I got into college and to work, I made my self entitled for a cup of handcrafted bevy.
For me buying what I truly love means self-care. I didn’t realize that it is satisfaction not caring at all. Because whatever I do doesn’t make me good.
What stopped me from spending too much…
I got pregnant with my second child in 2017. Before she even got into my tummy, I was already suffering from conditions like asthma and hyperthyroidism (both inherited from my generous family plus poor lifestyle I guess).
I never realized that it would be a high-risk pregnancy because of my condition. I had to buy 7 supplements because as per my OB baby’s brain development may not be so good if I don’t take it. The doctor also mentioned that my baby may get underweight because hyperthyroidism can result in fast metabolism too.
My follow up check-ups, laboratories and ultrasound are very frequent because we don’t want to harm the baby of course. Pregnancy isn’t really covered by our HMO, so I have to spend too much on everything.
I have very low pain tolerance that’s why I am afraid of public hospitals. So I gave birth at a private hospital. My baby is healthy but she had hyperbilirubinemia, we transferred to a public hospital because that “sugapang private hospital”, is asking for a deposit before assisting my baby. The doctor said it can be fatal or can cause brain damage if not treated immediately so we transferred.
Our wallets were emptied and we’re on a deep debt but I feel so blessed that my baby got through it all. Good thing she had my brave-genes with her.
My freaking excuse about my real self-care needs…
I haven’t shared it on my blog that since my 2nd baby’s birth I now again suffering from Alopecia (yes! my excessive hair loss is back). I used to share tips on how to regrow hair, which I totally believed will still work, but nah! I’m not gonna spend for hair tonic, not even shampoo.
Related Reads : Stop Hair fall and star regrowing them
I’ll just use a mom-provided shampoo at home. I still spend some nonsense(just very often), but I don’t feel like I’m entitled to buy what I really needed.
If you don’t know the root cause of hair loss, it is.. tantadadaaa STRESS.
I don’t like buying hair growing products because I know that I just need to unwind and forget about stress. But it is freaking hard… Isn’t?
So I started researching how to distress and perform self-care!
I’m pretty sure that a lot of us tried researching about this too. What did the experts say? Exercise? Meditate? Read? Sleep? Routines? Journal? and blah blah blah!
Those are supposed to be really helpful and FREE!
But here’s our major responses to these experts:
How will I exercise?
“I don’t have shoes, I don’t have a gym membership and I don’t have gym clothes.” or “I don’t have time”
How will I meditate?
“It’s not possible in my place, it’s noisy, I have a lot of things to do.” and “I don’t have time for that, it’s hard!”
How will I sleep better or how do I build routines?
I should get this app to help me sleep or build routines…After 3 days, dang! I have to subscribe to this app…Kaching! Subscribed for 1 year, uninstalled after a month of use.
How will I journal?
I need to get a brush pen, a ruler, a dotted notebook, a micron pen, colorful pens, and stencils…Pfff!
What’s with our responses?
Some of them were my own responses to these questions. I just made some of it to be OA.
We either, can’t find time by making an excuse or spend money on something that isn’t really necessary. Because that’s what we see from other people.
Who the hell goes to the gym without wearing gym clothes? Is it possible to journal in steno or filler? Who build routines of their own?
Some may go like “how can I post my fitness goals without this and that”… These days the saying BE YOURSELF is getting popular but rarely lives with it. We try to be someone without realizing that it doesn’t do any good to us.
Self-care should be making us better inside and out. Physically, emotionally and mentally.
I’ve seen a man who doesn’t care of how he looked
Let me just tell this story. It’s a short one but this is a true story. I used to jog or walk every morning at the parking lot of SM Bacoor every morning. You may feel intimidated there sometimes even though it isn’t a gym, many people go there to do the same—to run, walk or cycle, sometimes even Zumba and usually they wear fancy clothes and running shoes.
But there’s this one guy(middle-aged man) who doesn’t care about how he looked or how others do. He wears his normal clothes and slippers. He did many lapses of running than any others and I noticed that his pacing is very consistent.
As we get there every morning, I kept seeing him running already and even before we leave. He’s doing his best to be fit without caring about any judging look that glanced at him.
My need for self-care…
Since I started staying at home, I feel so stressed about house chores, the kids wildness, and being with my family who’s lovingly stressing me out all day.
And the stress I am receiving from my space is getting to me as toxic stress. Which leads to very poor health. What I am afraid of is getting poor mental health.
A lot of us here in the Philippines tend to neglect the thought of mental health.
Would you want to visit a doctor if you notice that you tend to disagree with most of the people? Would you visit a doctor because you always get angry?
At home, we never ended the day without an argument. I’m pretty sure we had different personalities that led us to have clashed. But I think being mentally fit can adapt to this kind of environment. Either I or they or all of us have some minor mental health issues that need to be addressed.
But since they never listen to me or any of my opinion, I’d rather start caring for my self to avoid these toxic stress than to introduce them to these methods I’d like to try.
Is it a luxury or a need?
Self-care is not a luxury for me it is a need. Our needs usually require spending but we have to make sure that what we spend serves its purpose not just to pacify us or to impress others.
We always have time, but we spend it somewhere else. Try to check how much time you’ve spent on social media, or on youtube, or games. Some device may also allow you to check how many times you’ve unlocked your phone, this may not be noticeable. but many of us are distracted by our phones and have never realized that we kept on checking our devices from time to time.
We probably had thrown 30 minutes or MORE in a day in watching, playing, browsing online shops and social media.
That minimum time could’ve been used performing our self-care goals. Like in 5 minutes you could’ve done a beginner session for meditating or 10 minute yoga.
This self-care is not a show-off, not a goal to the richness, and definitely not for others. Never compete or compare yourself to anyone, once again it’s not about others it about yourself that’s why it’s SELF-CARE in the first place. This is about caring for yourself to be healthy and fit not to be sexy or genius (Though it can be part of it at times).
In our fast-paced world, we need to slow down for longevity. Being always in a hurry can lead your life in a hurry too. Let’s start spending our time and money wisely for stress-free and healthy living.
This may sound an outro but I still have another subheading… LOL
My new Self-Care goals!
My goal is to spend less on this matter but make sure to find time to do the following: Exercise, Read, Meditate, and Journal. I’ve already started it bits by bits.
I’m asthmatic and I have kids so I can’t leave home to exercise, so I decided to practice Yoga!
Right now I’ve started looking for guides (yes guides, I’m willing to pay to teach me how not teach me to be responsible just like the habit tracking apps lol) for yoga and meditation. I tried apps and been looking for the cheapest and that is full-packed or anything free (which usually is rare).
So far after trying a lot, I found a Yoga companion app with meditation included, but I have used it for a few days. I will start checking on their free trial once I am done with their complimentary beginner’s course. If it would be a helpful companion I will subscribe and share it to you.
Since Yoga sesh will be at home, I can wear anything I like. While I’m starting to explore yoga, they advise to get a yoga mat but I think it isn’t necessary yet(or maybe not necessary at all).
I’ve done some trials on meditation apps to guide me on how to get started and I can practice them alone once the trial gets expired. Or I probably get the yoga with meditation app if I notice any improvement.
So far so good
Honestly, even I was just starting, I can feel some improvements with all my perspective. I feel more energized I guess and my headaches lessen. I’m trying my best notice what’s changed but so far those are the things I can remember.
I am an over-thinker, usually, my head and neck are aching because of non-stop thinking. Recently, while practicing meditation I’ve been attempting to remove negative thoughts which now lessen relatively. I learned it’s not about removing thoughts but just accepting.
I started focusing on reading books or focus on my breath when my thoughts are wandering to nowhere.
Since I decided to go back with bullet journaling (which I’m hoping I could maintain), I’m starting to write what I should be focusing on and striking out all nonsense.
Related Post: How to bullet journal with Evernote
Now that I am putting my self first, I’m starting to feel relieved. Learning new things to be non-reactive with the things that are not worth reacting with is so great. I’m starting to learn how to respond properly to some situations that are causing me stress and bad health in the past.
Hopefully, I can maintain.
Another way to unwind and care for yourself is by travelling. Here’s a travel guide to Palaui written by a friend of mine ♥.
Going back to the question!
Do you think self-care is a luxury? Hopefully, it’s not going to be a luxury for you anymore. Start believing that self-care is a need and doable. I can assure you that you’ll feel some great improvement too. Share your thoughts about self-care and what you are doing to care for yourself too.
PS. In the past, I thought it would be better to feel cared about by others, but I realized that it is more fun to receive care from yourself than from others.
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