Seems Like Groundhog Day
I was thinking so as I woke up this morning, the 21,857th day in a row, to the song, “I Got You Babe” by Sonny and Cher from 1965. I put on my work clothes, ate the same breakfast, went to the same office, did the same job, saw the same people, designed the same style of eyebrows for what felt like the same client for the 21,857th day in a row. WAIT!! Are we living our own version of the movie, Groundhog Day? Often it feels like it! Have we found our joy? Our rest? Our self-care? Our self-respect? Our fountain of youth?
“If you want to help her, you need to help yourself first. No one serves their friends (clients) by grinding themselves into dust on the altar of compassion.” Seanan McGuire
The two things consistently found in the cosmetic tattoo industry, are artists motivated by compassion, while others are motivated by money. Both motivators tend to leave us tired, overworked, and generally stressed out. Have you ever done a favor for a friend and added them to your schedule after a long day of work? I HAVE! Regretfully, every time I made rookie mistakes. When your mind and body are tired, what is meant to be a favor becomes a liability.
Why are boundaries important?
I happened upon a chart on Facebook, not necessarily the foundation of unshakeable truth, but often a place for contemplation. Many colleagues commented on the Signs of High-Functioning Anxiety with the words, that’s me! I’m not saying we are all anxious messes, but as we reach our goals, there are common denominators to our success.
Being self-employed means we work long hours, pass on vacation days, and hold an underlying belief that we must always be productive. If we have high-functioning anxiety, can we even allow ourselves a moment of rest? This ultimately results in taking away our opportunities for self-care.
By taking time out to engage in self-care, we may relieve the pressures of every day. The bonus can be a life reset. Do we need to sacrifice what we love? NOOOOOO!! We need to find a balance between what we love and who we are. When we are recharged, we can find a healthy point where productivity is once again maximized, creativity is improved, and tension is nowhere to be found. Considering the costs associated with health services and lost wages, spending some time on ourselves may ultimately benefit everyone.
The single most common reason people give for lack of self-care is due to a lack of time. Many of us have a lot going on, and it’s imperative that we carve out quality time every day for ourselves, even if minimally.
Remember that self-care is all about YOU. I’m positive you have heard suggestions in the past that did not work. Please do not be discouraged. What works for one person may not work for another, but that’s the beauty of our individuality.
Building a Personalized Plan
As written by Judy Mae Bingman, Illinois Extension, Marketing and Communications Manager and sourced from Jenna Smith, Illinois Extension Nutrition and Wellness Educator (University of Illinois), there are eight categories, if kept in a healthy balance, that generally predict higher levels of wellness. For all of us, though, there is continued work to be done. Life is dynamic. And so are our dimensions of wellness. When our balance is compromised, we may find ourselves struggling and find it difficult to handle things we easily could have in the past.
Emotional; Talk to someone, journal, read, do something artistic, listen to music, work out, take a walk, watch something that suits your mood (or changes it), cry it out, hug someone, cuddle, laugh, take a nap, say daily affirmations
Environmental ; Take a walk somewhere nice, breathe in fresh air, enjoy the sun, enjoy the sun, enjoy the night sky, clean your house, redesign a room
Financial; Develop a practical financial plan, open a saving account, start saving, reevaluate your spending, give yourself a raise
Intellectual; Read, listen to audiobooks, watch documentaries, complete puzzles, be mindful of the world around you, become curious, try something new, take a class, complete a program
Occupational; Improve your skillset, learn a procedure, take on a task you enjoy, set new business goals
Physical; Take a walk, work out several times a week, eat healthier, get your annual checkup, see the dentist, take medications as prescribed, avoid drugs and alcohol, get 7+ hours of sleep, practice good posture while working
Social; Meet up with friends and family, keep in contact with old friends, volunteer, take a social media break, exude positivity, utilize technology if distance is a factor, find reasons to make you laugh
Spiritual ; Meditate, pray, reflect, practice yoga, be mindful, consider your higher purpose and meaning, look to your higher power for support, volunteer, love one another
For all of us, though, there is continued work to be done. Life is dynamic. And so are our dimensions of personal balance and wellness. During challenging times, we learn to rely on our personal strength to help carry us through. Then we carry on with our autopilot mindset, living our own personal Groundhog Day scenario. Right now. STOP. Assess your body. Is your forehead tight, stress in your back or jaw? When too many personal boundaries are compromised, we may find ourselves struggling difficult-to-handle things we easily could have in the past.
You’re Worth It
Time to evaluate! What do you want to do next? Is it balance you need? As we consider each of the eight areas for life balance, we will see what we need to fortify. Feel free to personalize and modify your plans. Create your balance.
Remember, this is about you. You are worth it.
Vicki Hansen, CPCP
SPCP Director, Membership Co-Chair