By Anna Mathur @annamathur
Anna is a mum of three, and a Psychotherapist, Author and Speaker.
I think I’ve changed my mind about self-care.
Self-care is not a shower. It’s not peeing when you need to. It’s not hydrating or going to bed instead of doing another load of washing.
That is self-respect.
Does my husband think he’s engaging in ‘a little self care’ when he hops into the shower to wash the day away? Or pours a quenching glass of tap water? (I can’t imagine that the thought even passes his mind to de-prioritise those basic rights anyway).
Yet we approach them with the indulgence and logistics of a spa-day.
Self-respect is meeting your basic needs.
They bring me to some kind of base level.
The over-and-above are the things that are more likely to relieve us from teetering on the edge of overwhelm. The extra. The things that bring us back to ourselves.
It’s not the speedy shower, but the long bath with a page-turner novel
It’s not the gulped down cuppa, but the coffee catching up with a friend
It’s not the ‘gimme a minute’ it’s the ‘please help me work out how I can get an hour or two’
It’s not the message reply ‘yeah I’m having a hard time’, it’s the ‘can we talk?’
It’s not the grab’ n go lunch but the one prepared and enjoyed sat down.
But perhaps we can find small ways to offer ourselves more than just the bare minimum. Upping our standards for what we deem a treat.
If I promised my kids a special day out and took them to the supermarket, they’d be solely disappointed.
If we pledge to work on our sense of worth and then ‘treat’ ourselves with a glass of water or a wee, then….some part of us learns to believe that‘a the limit of our deservedness, and that everything else is a guilt-ridden indulgence.
Self-respect should be the very basic, non negotiable level. And then everything else goes on top, the extras, the nice stuff. Because….*sits on hands trying not to type ‘you’re worth it*….well, because.
Just a thought.