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Self Care

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Posted: 16 July 2017 defines self care as any activity that you do voluntarily which helps you maintain your physical, mental or emotional health. If you are stressed, finding it difficult to organise your time or feeling generally overwhelmed by all you need to do, maybe your system is crying out for a little time out. It may be you've not been caring for yourself, whilst juggling the many different roles you hold. You might benefit from a little self care.
Self Care is a modern concept, I don't recall either of my grandmothers talking about self care. To be totally honest, I don't think that generation of roll up your sleeves and get on with it, would have even considered the concept. Sadly, neither of those amazing women are here for me to ask. Both like many of their generation put everyone else first. They were amazing carers. Like many Mum's they didn't switch off until their brood were settled for the evening. The concept of taking time out for themselves would have been completely foreign. That being said they were partial to a quiet afternoon cuppa with a biscuit. That was their time out. 10 maybe 15 minutes a day, if they were lucky. This is not a comparison between the generations, about who had it better. Rather a reflection on how far we've come.

These days we are more aware of the burnout we face, through juggling many different hats. With many caring for parents as well as their own young or teenaged families, working and the many extra curricular activities surrounding a young family, modern Mum's and Dad's are in need of time out. Time to relax, reflect and recharge. When we care for others, importantly we need to care for ourselves first. Think of the safety talk before you fly or sail, first look after yourself then look after others. The hosties impress this strongly, that you can't help your children, if you don't make sure that first you're ok. Caring for others, particularly long term caring, for partners, parents, children with special needs, is physically, emotionally and mentally tiring. Heck being a parent is exhausting, especially when children are young. If you don't look after yourself adequately, you can't give your best as a carer. If you don't look after yourself, you are shortchanging yourself. When you are drained mentally and emotionally, you risk poor physical health. If you live with a chronic health issue, physically or mentally you are drained, it becomes imperative that where possible you take time to relax and recharge, to be able to keep "fighting".

It isn't selfish to take a break, to have a little me time, allowing you to recharge both for yourself and those you care for.
Written by: SoMCounsPsych
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