So I took some time to take care of myself. Self care. Relaxation. These are things I’ve always struggled with. Maybe you have too. You have a cold that’s really knocking you out, and you’d rather not go to work – but it is just a cold! Should you go? Are you being “a baby” about your cold? Is staying home irresponsible because you’re not sick enough? Is going to work irresponsible because you’ll get others sick? What will others think? Or maybe you have something going on in life – a death, a breakup, a loved one you’re worried about, a trauma… your mind is occupied with that event. You’re not sure you’re going to be able to think at work. You wonder if you should throw yourself into your work. You wonder if it is ok to take a little time off for yourself. Maybe you even take the time off, but then feel guilty about it and end up doing housework, running errands, or in some other way being productive, and then thinking to yourself “at least I did something useful.”
I don’t have all the answers to these questions. Drawing that line is a tough thing to do, and unfortunately it often depends on your job, your boss, your available time off, your finances. BUT, I am here to say this:
Self care is not selfish. You are allowed to take time for yourself. You are allowed to relax. Time for yourself is productive. It is productive because it makes you more whole, more able to give of yourself in all the ways you want to. Taking care of yourself IS taking care of others. So, when you need to, take a break. It will pay dividends.
Your mind might be saying “Yes, but I have to…” No. Take a break. “But if I don’t get this done…” No. Take a break. “People will think I’m lazy!” No. Take a break. Don’t feel guilty. Don’t covertly do other things you have to do to justify your break. The moment you don’t have time to take a break is precisely when you need to take a break. Give yourself that permission. Be an advocate for yourself.
Counseling is one way to take a break. Frequently we tell ourselves we don’t have time to make an appointment, or we don’t have time to go to an appointment, or we don’t have time to take care of ourselves in whatever other way we know we need to. Well, if we keep not taking time for those things, we eventually burn out. We can only burn the candle at both ends for so long. Counseling is a date with yourself. Counseling is time you give yourself. Counseling is a commitment to yourself to work on yourself, to think, to process, to take care of yourself.
So often we say yes to everyone else. Then there’s no yes left over for us. Say yes to yourself. You know what you need. Trust yourself to know what you need. Make yourself a priority. Go take care of yourself.
If you’re in Orlando and you’d like a partner in making a date with yourself and a commitment to yourself, give us a call at Life Skills Resource Group in Orlando at 407-355-7378. Our experienced Orlando counselors, psychologists, hypnotherapists, and life coaches are here to guide you and give you the support you need.
Wishing you time with you this weekend! ~Krista