How do You define Self-Care?
Though the term sounds incredibly simple, many women over 50 are confused about the actual definition of self-care. The truth of the matter is that self-care encompasses an uncomplicated but multi-faceted meaning. In the simplest of terms, it is care provided by you, for you.
For a lot of us, the first thing that comes to mind is sitting in the fancy massaging chairs at the nail salon while someone performs a much-needed and overdue pedicure. But let’s put a creative spin on the idea for a bit and discover what all “self-care” really means for today’s woman over fifty.
The Multiple Benefits of Intentional Self-Care
Your quality of life can be positively or negatively affected by how you balance output and input. If your output – of energy, effort, strength, and spirit – is greater than your input – the activities and nourishment you put into your body, heart, mind, and soul – you likely not functioning at full capacity or anywhere near your potential.
It’s like only putting enough gas in the car to get through the task at hand and leaving nothing in reserve for the next journey.
When you practice self-care, your tank remains full enough to fulfill the demands that are made upon you each day. When balance is achieved, the benefits of self-care include:
- Mental Clarity: Your brain needs pampering to function properly. It requires nourishment, rest, and stimulation to keep it firing on all cylinders and producing productive thought processes and answers to the many questions you ask as a part of your daily life.
- Healthier Immune System: When you are taking care of your physical body, your immune system gets a good ole boost of goodness to keep fighting. Your Over-50 physical body is NOT the same as it was at 25, and that may be a really good thing. Gaining maturity doesn’t have to mean rapidly declining physical strength or a drastic increase in the onset of illnesses.
Much like your brain, your immune system requires proper nutrients, but it also needs rest and rejuvenation to fight off cold and flu season, the next variant of the COVID virus, or other illnesses that want to take up residence in your body.
- Increased Physical Endurance: Have you ever heard the saying “A body in motion stays in motion?” It’s quite simple, really. Proper maintenance is key for anything to go further and last longer, including the “machine” of your perfectly imperfect human body.
- Improved Self-Esteem: When we feel good, we feel good. Carving out time to devote specifically devoted to self-care provides the perfect avenue to avoid stressors like negative self-talk and beating ourselves up. Instead, we’re moving intentionally in the direction of better health, which provides a positive boost to our levels of confidence and self-esteem.
- More of You to Give: Being well-versed in self-care might seem a bit selfish, but it’s the complete opposite. Self-care replenishes our resources to be able to give. You can’t give away what you don’t have, and you can’t pour from an empty cup, right?
Where Do I Start?
Understanding the why of self-care is only the beginning. Hopefully, this knowledge will be enough to inspire you to actively incorporate some intentional and consistent self-care into your life. Take some time for personal evaluation and remember, this IS about you!
First up, ask yourself some questions:
- What makes me happy?
- What do I enjoy doing?
- When do I feel my best?
Get to know yourself. Self-discovery is part of the entire process. If you’ve always wanted to try ballroom dancing classes but have never given it a chance, go for it. You’ll cover psychological, spiritual, physical, and social self-care activities by learning the fox trot!
Based on your answers you’ll find the right direction for your self-care routine.
No two people are the same, and each person’s self-care rituals are going to be a little different than the next. And that’s not only okay but it should also be encouraged!
Self-care isn’t about anyone else; it’s about you and restoring your mind, body, and spirit.
It’s about carving out time to rejuvenate our lives and live a more purposeful and meaningful existence.
It’s about you committing to taking better and more intentional care of yourself!