As a wellness professional and someone who likes to help, you direct a lot of your energy to caring for others. If you’re also a parent, spouse, caregiver or the like, these roles too require giving of yourself on a regular basis.
Serving others is noble, but as you educate others on the importance of self-care, are you practicing what you preach?
How often do you give to yourself? There’s a concept in Buddhism called right action that means ensuring “that our actions do not bring harm to ourselves and others.” (I’m not a Buddhist, but this phrase resonates with me). If you don’t give to yourself on a regular basis, your well will run dry, leaving you without the ability to serve others from a place of strength and authenticity.
So I ask again, are you taking the time to fill your own cup, so you’re not depleted when giving to others? How are you serving yourself to replenish your own energy?
Let’s take a look at this through the lens of body, mind and spirit.
Ah, the body, our earthly vessel. It’s the only one you have during this lifetime, so it will serve you well to care for it on a daily basis. If you don’t take the time for self-care now, you won’t have your health later to enjoy the fruits of all your hard work. Do a check-in on the following items and reflect on how you are (or can) integrate them more regularly into your life.
How often do you receive bodywork? This is important for relaxation, tension and stress relief, boosting the immune system and the practice of receiving. Pay (or trade services with) a bodyworker that you trust, someone who takes the time to listen and understand your needs, and can offer the results you’re looking for.
Are you exercising? Many of us extol the virtues of exercise to clients, yet we’re not doing it ourselves. Exercise promotes physical as well as brain health.
The key to exercising regularly is finding a method you enjoy then scheduling, and committing, to it on your calendar at minimum once per week. Tip: even 15 minutes of movement counts. You’ll never regret taking the time to exercise, so give this gift to yourself regularly.
You are what you eat, but what are you eating? Do you invest your time and money into whole, living foods and supplements that nourish your body? Or do you embrace convenience foods, only to feel sluggish and hungry soon after as a result?
Make conscious choices with your nutrition and listen to your body – it will tell you when it likes what you’re giving it (and when it doesn’t). If you’re confused by the abundance of conflicting nutrition information out there, work with a trained nutritionist or health coach.
Take the time to get medical and dental care on a regular basis. Whether you choose an alternative or conventional medical provider (or both), regular labs will help you monitor your health and make course corrections as necessary.
Working in partnership with a knowledgeable provider that you trust will help you retain (or reclaim) vitality and whole life wellness.
As for dental care, the health of your teeth is an important indicator of your overall health. Get regular checkups to keep your teeth and mouth healthy. Your body will thank you.
Sleep & Rest
The discussion of sleep and rest could arguably go under the Body section. However, sleep and rest are important factors in maintaining brain health as well.
The average American adult suffers from sleep deprivation. According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults require 7-8 hours of restful sleep per night for the body to adequately repair and replenish. How much are you getting? If you’re not getting enough, how’s that working for you?
It’s really ok to just stop do-ing during your day, take a few moments between clients or tasks to relax, breathe and just be. Do this several times a day to make it a practice.
Schedule your bedtime and waking hours to ensure you’re getting enough sleep to create sustained energy levels throughout your day. I’m a big fan of naps if my body needs one. Just do it, you’ll feel better.
What are you doing to learn more about your modality and grow your skills each year? Continuing education comes in a variety of forms: free or paid online courses, blogs, books, in-person classes, CEUs, State or national conferences, and more.
Increase the value you provide to clients by growing your knowledge base and keeping your saw sharp. When you develop the number of tools in your toolbox, it’s easier to justify an increase in your prices as you expand your service offerings.
Call it woo-woo if you like, but energy healing is powerful stuff and science is now “proving” that it works (as if it needed proving in the first place).
From the Reiki I’ve given to clients, to the many types of energy healing I’ve personally received, energy medicine helps one let go of energy they’re carrying for others that is not their own. I’ve left energy healing sessions feeling more grounded, lighter and free.
There are many different types of energy healing out there. To find a reputable practitioner, ask people you trust for recommendations or search for a practitioner who’s well-trained, knowledgeable and most importantly, grounded.
Over the past 20 years, I’ve tried various spiritual practices, none of them consistently. And although I discovered many valuable insights, I often didn’t apply what I learned.
A few months ago, I kept hearing that creating a regular spiritual practice can boost your business and your life. So I decided to try it. I signed up for a spiritual study course and started meditating daily.
So far, so good. My morning meditation and reflection time helps keep me grounded and establishes a focus for each day. As for integrating the lessons I’m learning? Still in process (check back later).
Whether you are religious, spiritual, intuitive, or all of the above, commit yourself to a regular spiritual practice to get or stay grounded, discover more acceptance and forgiveness in each and every day, and connect with the authentic essence of your higher self.
Whew! This laundry list sounds like a lot more to-do’s to add to your plate, doesn’t it? And you’re limited on time already. Rest assured, you don’t have to do everything. The point I’m trying to make here is to reflect on your self-care practices and attempt to make more conscious choices in your daily life.
When you step back and fill your vessel, you’ll replenish your body, mind and spirit and have more energy to give to your clients and share with your loved ones.
Images: www.amc.com, www.pathwayswellnessprogram.com, www.huffingtonpost.com