By: Cecelia Westman, CSVANW Advocate Coordinator
During December, how often is it that you tend to engage in conversations with your friends, family, and co-workers about your accomplishments during the year and the challenges that you have faced? For many, the end of the year leads to goal setting for the upcoming calendar months. The changes that many of us want to see are grounded in self-care and often hash tagged as #NewYearsResolutions. Maybe you would like to lose weight, spend more time with loved ones, read more, dance, save money, quit smoking, or even go back to school and finally get that degree that you have put off? New Year’s Resolutions are wonderful goals to set, but many people fall short by not prioritizing themselves or creating a plan so that they can succeed.
This is where the real self-care comes in. According to habitsforwellbeing.com, self-care is defined as caring for your holistic self. In an online article they stated that this includes “your social, emotional, physical, mental, financial, environmental and spiritual health and wellbeing.” This can also include your attitude toward yourself and your daily habits and routines. Perhaps, small shifts in your daily activities can significantly alter your daily outcomes? For example, starting your day with a glass of water and drinking more water throughout the day can keep you energized and focused, allowing you to go to the gym after work. Another example would be starting a book club and processing stories with others so that large ideas can be processed and examined in a group setting leading to shifts socially in your community.
You see, self-care is about so much more than taking a hot bath or eating your favorite foods. It is about increasing longevity and allowing for growth, not just for yourself but for others as well. Knowing that we are not fixed and stagnant creates room for joy and healing. Every person has many things to offer within their lifetime and beyond. Perhaps the trickiest part of this whole narrative is determining what #selfcare means for you. Self-care is different for everyone, there is only one thing that is the same…honesty. Are you being honest with yourself and what your needs actually are? Have you taken time to sit and assess where you are at in your body, in your head, and in your heart? Understanding where you might be at in all of those spaces just might be the ideal place to start your New Year’s Resolutions.