Inspiration for today’s topic came from a recent experience in my own healing journey that you might relate to.
Out of curiosity…
Do you often feel like you’re too busy to take care of yourself? Or,
Do you know what you need to do to take care of yourself, but find yourself at the end of each day feeling bad that you haven’t done it?
If so, I know how you feel! I’ve recently experienced these challenges in an area of self-care. I dug deep into my practice toolbox AND asked for help to address it.
Here’s the story:
As I mentioned a few months ago, I have an abdominal diastasis from my twin pregnancy. This condition is from my stomach muscles being stretched and separated so much by my growing belly that they couldn’t come back together on their own after my babies were born. I’ve been working with Frances Darnell, my amazing pilates instructor, via skype to gently heal it and the great news is it’s coming along well. But, I still can’t run or do other activities I love like yoga and I need to step it up to get the results I want. Although I’ve made good progress, I have to admit that it’s been really challenging for me to stay motivated and do my exercises each day.
For the past several months I’ve had specific daily physiotherapy and pilates exercises to do and I haven’t been doing them as much as I need to. Of course I think about them everyday, but sometimes I’ve missed them altogether, and other times squeezed them in last minute (like at 3am while I breastfeed – crazy!). Overall, I felt “too busy” to do them, which deep down I know isn’t true. They literally take 6 minutes, twice a day. I was clearly struggling to take care of myself in this way. However! I had a big breakthrough recently that’s helped me stick with it.
I FINALLY connected in with what I needed and asked for a little extra help. What a difference it made.
I asked Fran to help me come up with a routine to fit the exercises around my schedule, rather than me trying to wing it and do them in on the go (which clearly wasn’t working out for me). Now, thanks to her guidance I take a few minutes before and after my workday to do them. Done! The exercises have also gone from something I “have” to do, to a special time of the day for me to listen to music or a podcast that I want to, and take a few minutes for myself.
Here are some other tools I’m drawing on from my own practice toolbox to help me stick with my self-care goals:
Tips To Stay Motivated & Nurture Yourself
- Schedule it – whether it’s for a workout, a run, planning your weekly menu or going shopping, putting those minutes aside for yourself opens up space for it to actually happen.
- Be accountable to someone – share your goals with someone who can hold you accountable for moving ahead on them. They can give you anything from a friendly check-in to a loving, but firm, kick in the butt. I’m now accountable to Fran and to my physiotherapist. And, now to YOU after sharing today 🙂
- Set a clear time-line for your goal – would you like it done in 30 days, 3 months or 6 months? Setting a clear boundary on time is VERY powerful. For me, although I have a longer commitment overall to the process, I have 6 weeks to until my next physio assessment to create big results.
- Reward yourself – pick something fun! If I achieve enough through consistently doing my exercises in the next 6 weeks, I may get the ok to run and do yoga again. I miss these so much it’s definitely a tantalizing reward.
- Keep it simple – yes, there are a million other things I’d love to be doing for my health too but focusing on, and DOING, this one thing today will be a lot more productive than thinking about all those other things. It’s about taking it one step at a time.
Is there something you’ve wanted or needed to do to feel your best? If so I’d love to hear what it is. And don’t be shy about asking for help. I’ve benefited SO much from this.
And of course I’m here for you if you’d like a partner and guide along the way, or a gentle kick in the butt to get balanced and feel amazing again.