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But I Don't Want To

Now that the hustle and bustle of Christmas is over, you’re probably focusing on your New Year resolutions. Make sure you put self care at the top of the list. But what is self care? Self care is not a one time thing that you do when you feel stressed, like get a massage or facial. Self care is a lifestyle. It’s taking care of you on a daily basis. Maintaining a healthy balance. Taking time for you even when you are not stressed. Self care is learning how to recognize when you are getting stressed and cutting it off at the pass. Stress is always going to be a part of our lives and chaos will erupt at times and unpreventable situations will happen. But the good news is, I’m gonna help get you started on the road to self care.

  • “But I don’t want to”. Learn to say no without feeling guilty. Learn to decline an invite without feeling obligated. Learn the value of not needing to explain yourself. How? It takes practice. One idea is when you really don’t want to do something or go somewhere, write down your reasons (don’t feel well, too tired, etc), then decided if the reason is valid or an excuse (avoiding someone at the party, feeling obligated to bring something), finally check your mental health (big parties make you anxious, your depression is making you exhausted). Once you have your answers, graciously decline without explanation and if there is guilt, write about it.

  • Your body will tell you all you need to know. Listen to it. Aches and pains may not be the weather. Headaches may not have been caused by triggers. Lethargy may not be from a bad night of sleep. When stress hits, your body responds. Don’t force yourself to ignore those symptoms. If you journal these symptoms and backtrack from before you felt them, you will find your stress level increased. Many jobs now offer mental health days and I think that is fantastic. Take them. Take your sick days and your vacation days. Take a day on the couch and watch mindless tv. Take a down day before it gets too late.

  • Go in for a tune up. Make appointments with your medical doctor and counselor. Find out if your numbers are in order. Catch your mental health symptoms early.

  • Exercise. There are a myriad of reports and studies that talk about the benefits of exercise. Whether you are a marathon runner or a quick walk around the block person. Whether you go to the gym everyday or stretch at home. Something is better than nothing and your mood and health will improve.

  • You don’t have to be everything to everybody. It certainly is nice to be needed but take a step back and really look at your circle. Are you always the ‘go to’ person? Do you find people have nothing to do with you until they need something? Are there times you feel taken advantage of? Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to sit back and enjoy a party or event rather than always be the host or planner? Only you can answer that.

  • Take yourself back. Self care is not selfish. You are the only one living your life. You are the only one who knows your story. You are the only one who can change things.

During the rest of this year, take some time to answer some of the questions above and make a plan on how you will take care of yourself in 2023. Maybe your mantra will be: In 2023, I will take care of me. Happy New Year.


Next week I will begin a series on developing plots.


Until next time…




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