“Just start being present.”
“Give yourself the grace you so readily show others.”
How many times do we hear these phrases or ones like them and how many times are we left confused wondering what they mean?
When we think about being in any type of relationship with someone, part of what is necessary is spending quality time and intention with that other person in mind. We show up for the people that matter in our lives in various ways. How many relationships would be sustainable long term if we never answered a phone call from a friend, always denied the needs of a partner, or never took the time to show up to our kid’s sports games? They wouldn’t have the quality and intensity of connection that so many of us desire. This is why we prioritize being there for our kids (even when we’d rather be doing something else,) listening when our partner talks, and scheduling lunch dates with friends we haven’t seen in a while. If this occurs long term, not showing up to be present for a relationship, they eventually fade away. Friendships dwindle, marriages end in divorce and kids become estranged. But the relationship you can never run from – is the relationship with yourself.
However, I often find that our relationship with ourselves seems to be the one we rarely show up to. We push our needs to the side, ignore the red flags waving that need attention, and don’t attend to the needs when we think we should be doing something else. It should be no surprise then that many of us have either hit the point or are on the trajectory to hitting a crisis point of realizing we hate ourselves and just want to run from the life we are living.
How do we prevent that? We show up in many areas, but I’m going to list three here that I see often!
Show Up In Your Self-Care
Sometimes we do things in the name of self-care because we saw it in a magazine, heard it somewhere from a friend, or just so we can check off that box. Or we don’t do it at all! Just like we each have different love languages we can use to express our care and affection to our spouse, we also have different ways we can show our care towards ourselves. I know some people who schedule out alone time while others schedule out time with friends. Some take time to relax in a bath while others go to the gym every night. While all of these are beneficial, I want you to slow down and do an evaluation to see what actions give you the most energy. Reflect on what actions give you the revitalization back for what you are needing at that moment.
Show Up In Your Health
We are bombarded often by health and diet “fads” of what is needed and not and what we should and shouldn’t do. Weeding through all of it can feel like a chore in and of itself and not conducive to self-care. Start with intentionality. Slow down and pause to answer the question, “What does my body need right now?” Maybe it needs extra food, maybe it needs water, to rest, to move, or any number of things! You can’t do them all at once, but you can do something now. Being present and active in the choices you make for your physical health can be an incredible act of care for yourself. You may be surprised at the difference it makes.
Show Up In Your Plans
Look ahead at your plan for today, this week, this month, and this year. Where do you fit into that? We will plan for things needed for other people or things, but oftentimes we forget ourselves or say “I’ll fit it in during free time” while inwardly knowing free time hasn’t happened in years. To do any type of showing up for yourself in any way requires intentionality, and often, that requires planning.
The idea here is when you look at your plans ahead, you should be able to see a spot where you are physically showing up for yourself. This could be scheduling ahead some alone time, planning a trip to go to a conference over a topic you are interested in, meeting up with a friend for lunch next week, or any other variety of things. When you look at your calendar, make sure that you are present and accounted for.
If you need some suggestions for self-care practices that can fit into even the busiest schedules, check out our blog “30 Quick Self-Care Ideas”. If you would like support in how to show up for yourself more, please reach out to us for a free 10 to 15-minute consultation at: firstname.lastname@example.org