I taped this week’s video a few days ago and, my goodness, wish I’d taken better care of myself.
As a result of being silly, I’ve had endometriosis symptoms that have been worse than they’ve been in years (literally floored by the pain).
Plus side, this used to be an every month (pre-diagnosis, every DAY) reality. Now it’s a reminder that I really need to continue doing the things that make my body much happier.
For me, these practical self-care practices include:
* getting as much walking, swimming and other exercise in as possible in advance as this really minimises the pain – this is harder to do now that I’m (I think) perimenopausal and so my cycle is far stranger than ever before – so instead of upping it when premenstrual, maybe I need to increasing it as much as possible. This could potentially make me fitter!
* doing the yoga poses that ease the pain even when I don’t have the energy for a ‘proper’ practice
* freezing more individual portions of vegetable soup (the pain has passed enough to make a batch later on today and I cannot WAIT to eat this nourishing spinach etc), smoothies and other foods with more nutrients than crisps so, even when cooking feels like too much, I can nourish myself
* taking painkillers when I need them instead of trying to tell myself that it’s not as bad as it used to be
* curling up with a hot water bottle and good films/telly when reading or journaling feel too much
* getting as much good sleep in advance as possible and,
* most of all, using a gentle voice to talk to myself instead of reverting to bludgeoning myself with unkind thoughts about how other people have it way worse.
All my work – my writing and journalism, coaching, counselling and even supervision – is largely around self-care so I feel almost embarrassed to be sharing how challenging these simple acts can sometimes be.
Still, we’re all human.
My crisp overdose (delicious as it was) a few days ago was a big clue that I was attempting to circumvent the things that may take longer and feel harder but are ultimately more beneficial for me.
What are your warning signs?
I’d love to hear how you sabotage your self-care (and how you congratulate yourself for noticing and shift things so you can get back to being that bit kinder to yourself again) in the comments below.