I can always tell when I’ve started letting my self-care routine slide a little… Or when I’ve taken on too much without giving myself the extra self-care that I need to manage all the things I’ve taken on.
The problem is, once I realize that I haven’t been caring for myself enough, it’s usually too late. Chances are that by the time I catch on to what’s happening, I’ve already had some sort of outburst or caused some sort of scene. In fact, that’s what usually clues me in.
Like today for example…
I just got into a really pointless fight with my boss about page formatting for our email blast template… What!? Are you kidding me!? A fight over formatting on an eblast template! That is not how you pick your battles Alex Crosbie Wilson!
Granted, I am prone to temper tantrums (have been my whole life), especially when it comes to doing things I don’t want to do… But when I’m caring for myself properly, I can usually stave them off pretty well.
Once the outburst has passed and I’ve calmed myself down, that’s when I’m able to start thinking clearly and realize, okay, time to re-evaluate my self-care routine.
I have a pretty busy and hectic life right now, and my self-care routine is designed to help me manage what I’ve got going on. I have daily and weekly non-negotiables – meaning I have to make time for these things.
My weekday non-negotiables include:
- A cup of hot lemon water in the mornings.
- Meditation in the morning.
- A cup of tea at 10:30am (not before, not after).
- A 12:30 lunch break (This one’s easier to miss than you might think).
- A 10 minute break to go walk or sit outside at 4:30
My weekly non-negotiables include:
- Attend a yoga class
- Practice yoga at home 5 out 7 days a week
- Sesame oil self-massage 4 out of 7 days a week
- Reading for pleasure at least one night a week
- Sit down and write (outside of work)
- At least half a day to just sit at home and rest
This routine works pretty well with my typical schedule (working from 9-6 M-F, and teaching 4 yoga classes a week). But when I start adding more than that to my list (like picking up extra yoga classes, working overtime, going out on the week nights, and filling my weekends of social engagements), I need to make sure I add in more time for self-care. The balance is delicate, and when the scales tip too much in one direction, I start to feel cranky. When I’m cranky for an extended period of time (usually a day or two) that’s when I start to reach the danger zone and am at risk of causing a scene, having an outburst, or worst case scenario, setting off my anxiety (shudder).
If I’m adding to my self-care routine, I might start with my weekly list – more reading for pleasure, more yoga classes, and more time resting. If things are really crazy and I can’t find time for more weekly self-care practices, then I’ll try making time for smaller things, like going outside more than once during the day, indulging in a sweet treat (like a cookie) after lunch, calling up a friend or sibling to chat for a bit over my lunch break or on the way to work…
The things I add in when my life gets super crazy are meant to be extra special – things I don’t normally do. And usually that helps with finding more balance.
I guess it’s time to check myself, and add in a few extra self-care practices until things settle back down to my normal level of crazy.
Do you use any self-care habits to maintain balance in your life? What sort of things do you like to do to treat yourself? Do any of my non-negotiables sound like something you’d like to add to your daily routine?
I’d love to hear about how you manage the craziness that sometimes sneaks into your life. Tell me about your self-care routine in the comments below!