Jan 03

Make. Me. STOP!

By Joy Perugini | Self-Care

Red traffic lightSlooow down. The message keeps hitting me in the head like a stone thrown by a bratty six year old on the playground. I rush around, running like a chicken with its head cutoff, trying to be everything to everyone, and then it happens. The “powers that be” (i.e., God, Buddha, Allah, The Universe … whatever term floats your boat) throw me a curve ball and MAKE. ME. STOP! Be it a bodily injury, common cold, or just an achy head or back, The Universe (the term I favor) sweeps the rug right out from under me and I screech to a halt.

It forces me to stop rushing, stop obsessing, stop trying so hard, and just be! Be present, be happy, be me. Every day, all day. Just be ME. Because, dammit, I am enough. In fact, I am more than enough.

Imperfections and all, I am exactly where I am meant to be in my life right now … and so are you. And it’s about time we honor that in ourselves. Show ourselves all of the love and appreciation we deserve. Make peace with where we are right now. Not where we were yesterday, or where we will be tomorrow, but where we are at present.

So I challenge you with this: give to yourself first. Yes, you heard me right. Stop giving OF yourself for just a few moments each day, and give TO yourself. Practicing self-care is one of the most important things we can do for our own well-being, if not THE most important thing. It can be as simple as eating clean and training mean (or maybe training “not so mean”), or going a step further and investing in a massage, facial or some other therapeutic treatment. And don’t even start with the excuses that you don’t have enough time … we’ve all got the same amount of hours in a day, sweetheart. You can’t tell me that out of the one-hundred and sixty-eight hours you have in a week, you don’t have time to take one measly hour out for yourself. Trust me, I KNOW busy and I KNOW excuses (I’m well versed in both) and neither will get you anywhere you want to be.

Taking time out to care for yourself will make you a better “you” to everyone else in your life. You’ll be a better friend, co-worker, son, daughter, sister, brother, mother, father, husband, wife (you get the gist). It’s something I preach to my clients on a regular basis, but truth be known, it’s not something I easily do for myself. To practice what I preach, and truly slow myself down, is something I struggle with daily. But I do it. Why? Because if I don’t The Universe will make me. And if you ignore those “powers that be” for too long, they will slow you down in a way that you may not quickly, nor easily recover from. And quite honestly, that scares the crap out of me. I know that I don’t do it enough (I’m a work in progress), but when I start to feel even the least bit rundown, or even the hint of a cold coming on, I slam on the breaks and immediately do something for myself, even if it’s as simple as going to bed early or taking a bath. And you can do it too. No excuses. No “maybe later” bullshit. Just be kind to “you” for a few minutes. Maybe it means taking a moment in the day to sit quietly and take a few slow, mindful breaths. We all have time for that. It doesn’t have to be a project. In fact, eventually it’s sure to become quite natural … something we’ll begin to crave and do on auto-pilot (I’ll let you know when I get there). In the meantime, it may take a little effort (maybe some self-coercing), but I have faith … we got this!

Need a little help slowing down? Click here to take a short relaxation break … I promise it will be worth your time, and did I mention it’s free???