In a world where we are always on the go, focused on our electronic devices, and worried about the next thing to do, which I am guilty of all the above, I think that it is important to remember to care for yourself. This might mean:
- Eating a balanced diet
- Taking time to exercise
- Get enough sleep
- Enjoying things you have neglected to do that used to give you joy, whether it be catching up with friends, playing board games, painting, writing a blog, or playing music.
I’ve recently been thinking about this idea after having to face many different things in my life, from studying for my big STEP1 board exam, to attempting and failing at dating, and attempting to have a healthy work-life balance. I have also read about the hardships that other bloggers are facing in their personal lives, sometimes getting bogged down on the details of heartbreak and questions leading to no real closure. There’s also the frustrations with meeting people online versus real life, spending time to meet someone new, only to be so worked up about the encounter and falter at the lack of connection in real life.
Ultimately, when you remove all the various factors and people in our lives, the various obligations that we have been assigned to, willingly and unwillingly, the only thing left at the end of the day is YOU. It’s a scary realization that not a lot of people are willing and/or ready to face. But eventually you’ll have to face yourself, that type of person you have become, good and bad, and/or what you have lost sight of that you once enjoyed and prided yourself for. There’s also the self-reflection of personal growth, addition of new talents, skills, hobbies, etc., and the new experiences that have made positive and lasting impression on your outlook on life and interaction with others. Nevertheless, the person at the end of the day that matters the most is you. Some people may disagree with my statement, but think about it: In order to help others, to succeed in work/family/life/etc., the person you have to take care of, to make sure that they are at their best to make all of this possible, is YOU.
Don’t think that it is selfish to take care of yourself. It is hard to say no to things and disappoint others. There’s a balance between taking time for you and taking time for others, but it is important to have self-reflection and self-care. We can’t do everything, and there are other people you can ask for help for tasks. We aren’t superwoman/superman, and sometimes we just have to learn to stop, re-evaluate the things we are involved in and the decisions we make each day to see if it’s more harmful or helpful to our own well-being. There’s a happy balance between the two, and it’s crucial that we each take the time to acknowledge that and check-in with ourselves to see if everything we have undertaken is a benefit to our mental, physical and emotional well-being.
I have had to come to terms with these realizations over the years, and it’s a continual self “check” that I try to do from time to time. It’s an important task that I think more people should try to incorporate in their lives. It may help you get out of a rut, discover a passion you have lost, or help you move on from painful events of lost connections. Whatever it may be, please take time to take care of yourself. Please do not forget to be kind to yourself. And lastly, thank you for being YOU.