Self-care is a hot topic these days. There's a growing awareness that even small changes can have a big impact on your physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being.
At the same time, many people struggle with self-care and find it difficult to put into practice. They have no problem attending to the needs of others, yet they find it difficult to acknowledge their own needs. Why is that?
Here are 5 of the most common reasons why people struggle with prioritizing their own self-care.
1. Mistakenly believing that self-care is selfish.
This is probably the most common reason why people struggle with self-care. They have the misguided notion that any type of self-focus equates with being selfish. In reality, it's the exact opposite; when you take time to care for yourself, it leaves you far better equipped to meet the needs of others. You become healthier and stronger on every level, so you have more energy to give both in terms of quantity and quality.
2. Too busy/distracted with other responsibilities.
Self-care doesn't happen spontaneously, that's why it's so important that we take steps to fit it into our agenda. There's always something or someone nearby that needs our attention. Therefore, if we don't make a deliberate effort to work some self-care into the picture, it will get crowded out by everything else we have going on in our lives.
3. Societal messages and the media focus heavily on outward appearances and image.
Societal messages and the media encourage us to be super mindful of our outward appearance and how other people are viewing us. This has been exacerbated with the rise of social media, with people spending hours posting and editing pictures online that will present them in the best light possible. But what's going on behind the scenes? How you're really doing in private is far more important than how you appear to others publicly.
4. Lack of examples of self-care being modeled.
In any arena, a live demonstration is helpful as it allows us to see things in action. But for many of us, we've never actually seen self-care displayed by others in ways we could observe and learn from. As a result, we don't have any concrete examples of self-care to emulate, and we're not always sure of what it is and what it ought to look like in our own personal life. The good news is, self-care can look any way you want it to! It's all about meeting your needs and what works best for you.
5. You don't value yourself enough.
Sometimes, the struggle with self-care comes down to not valuing yourself enough. You don't recognize your own worth, therefore you don't deem yourself worthy of the care and attention that you so willingly extend to others.
If you struggle with self-care, try starting with small steps. Find something that nourishes you, builds you up, and makes you feel good, and make some time for it. The possibilities are endless, but here are some ideas to explore:
Tips for achieving optimal wellness, inside and out.