We live in a world where information and products are shared within milliseconds. This movement of mass information is aided by social media. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and many other platforms are saturated with opinions on self-care which has impacted the way that we understand the concept.
There are times where we self-indulge because it grants us that instant gratification and satisfaction that we need in the moment. A quick pick me up, and that is okay. However, we have to differentiate between self-indulgent behaviors and self-care.
Everywhere we look, self-care has been commercialized to look like stretching the bank account for bath bombs, constant mani-pedis, a pack of beer or a bottle of wine after a long day, the latest brunch spot, new kicks, a new outfit, etc. Although bath bombs are great, and they make us feel soft and smell good, we don’t really leave the bath saying “Ah! I learned something new about myself” or “Wow, this is how I actually felt about this past week.”
The goal of self-care is to reflect on our emotions and the behaviors influenced by our thoughts and feelings to increase self-awareness, engage in routine reflection, check-in with how we are feeling identity and process emotions, and more. Self-care allows us to take care of our self, first, and tend to the needs of others when we have enough to share.
This can be done through reflective art, journaling, challenging our inner fears, drawing and respecting our boundaries, saying “No”, going to therapy, reading books and articles that initiate growth.
“Self-indulgence leads to instant gratification; self-care is a commitment to knowing our self, healing, growing, and learning more about ourselves”
The healthy mind platter was developed by Dr. Dan Seigel, is a great place to start when developing self-care and balance. The healthy mind platter presents the 7 major areas that require our effort and attention for optimal mental health- a major component of self-care. Give this wheel a try, what are some areas that you are neglecting? Write out a plan or a schedule to balance all 7 areas and include them in your day-to-day routine.
Siegel, D. (2011). The Healthy Mind Platter. Retrieved from https://www.drdansiegel.com/resources/healthy_mind_platter/