Some clients often seek counselling on experiencing what they describe as a ‘Burnout’. They report feeling physically exhausted, demotivated, over thinking things, often snappy or irritable and have difficulty sleeping. These clients – often ladies AND mums describe themselves as ‘being on the go’ most of the time. They are often managing some form of paid employment, running a house hold and looking after children and their partner. These individuals have a heightened sense of responsibility towards their family members, employers, friends and even extended relatives but they forget to LOOK AFTER THEMSELVES!! Some individuals feel that it is their responsibility to ensure that everyone is being looked after, is happy and healthy but don’t seem to have the ability to stop and spare a thought towards their own well being. And to these individuals I say – If YOU are okay, THEY will be okay too!!
I am not going to go into the details of why some of us (me included at times) over do things and attempt to go beyond our means to ensure we are doing right by others. Lets focus on some of the things we all can do to look after ourselves. Now, when I address self care with some of my clients, I usually get responses such as “I don’t have the time to get beauty treatments done” or “ Finances are tight so I cant really go and shop for myself” etc. And I know of the saying “Whoever said Money cant buy happiness, didn’t know where to shop” lol. But the fact is, Self care is about incorporating little activities into your everyday life so that you ‘get a break’.
The only way these self care activities would work is
1) Tune into your body, recognize what its telling you and really LISTEN to it. Regardless of what your mind is tell you at the same time. You may feel tired or irritated and at the same time your mind may say “Have to finish the laundry or I will not be a good mother” OR “Have to finish this report for my boss or he will think I am a slack worker”.
2) Make a conscious attempt to undertake any of these activities. For Example, tell yourself “I need a break now so I am going to…………”
3) Stop multi-tasking! And undertake only of these activities at a time! Use all your senses to enjoy this one particular activity and make the most of it. Appreciate the activity and notice your body responding to the break it is getting.
Some Examples of Self Care activities include:
- Browsing the internet – a favourite websites, blogs or Facebook
- Consuming something healthy that you enjoy – a nice cup of tea, a piece of fruit or maybe a small piece of chocolate
- Light a Candle and take a bath!
- Go for a walk and observe your surroundings while you do that
Make your own list of activities that you can undertake at home or even at work to take much needed breaks. Keep this list handy and keep adding to it.
You will be surprised at how many ‘everyday’ things you can actually enjoy if you just really immerse yourself in them.
Posted in: Parenting