Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Self-Care & Hard Work.

The closer I get to the official start of my journey, the more I'm looking at other aspects of my life.

I wanted to be so singularly focused on writing (and particularly on treating it like a job), but humans are not exactly singular beings, are we? I suppose some are more than others. But me? As much as I've tried, I never really have been. Jill of all trades type, here. Always too many irons in the fire.

Balancing grit & care: self-care on a journey. | Reading & Writing RychHaving a main focus, however, has inspired me to get clear on all the other parts of life. It would be shortsighted to not consider how everything else effects your ability to do a job, after all. It's just surprising to me how much of that consideration is aimed at taking care of myself. It's like some instinctual part of me realizes that if I'm not in good condition, then my work won't be, either.

Part of it is simple and surface level - I won't have the time or freedom to maintain my work hours if I haven't seen my kids off to school, gotten myself showered and dressed, fulfilled my external obligations, stocked my house with healthy food, spent time on my mental wellness, and most importantly: ensured that I am physically well. Which has resulted in the creation of schedules and check lists to keep me on track. (It's going to take everything in me not to ignore them completely.)

But it also inspired me to want more for myself. To make a habit of wellness and growth.

For starters, I picked up Weight Watchers again in July. Not because I relish the back and forth of dieting and not dieting, or because I was terribly unhealthy, but because I was starting to feel less like myself and more critical of my outward appearance. I already feel so much better, and I'm already back into my "happy range". I've got a little ways to go towards my ultimate goal, still, but I have felt so uplifted and just good overall.

In September, I plan to pick up my yoga class again. I'm going to take a daytime class since I will have the daytime hours to myself for the first time in my adult life this school year. I'm also going to keep my own practice at home in the evenings for the month of September. I'd love to keep it going even longer, but I am careful with my commitments so I don't scare the rebel in me away. (It's easy to do.)

I've also got some specific health-related things to take care of (that I'm not sure I'm ready to share just yet), and I have never felt any amount of peace with it before but I think I may have found a small slice. It's good.

I also think it's important to remember that when we are chasing a dream or tackling a goal or fighting to become an ideal version of ourselves (simply because it's what we want from life), there has to be a balance of grit and care. Like getting sweaty and dirty and tiring out your muscles and following it up with a steamy shower. Little bits of daily care are the yin to hard work's yang. For me that will look like yoga routines, painting my nails, putting an outfit together, sipping mugs of hot coffee, wrapping up in fluffy blankets, reading stacks and stacks of books, spending time in my husband's arms, kissing my kid's squishy cheeks, cuddling up with my pets, and slipping some pieces of chocolate into my week.

I'm looking at hygge, ahimsa, and balance as my guides.

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