Thursday, May 29, 2014

Self-Love, Self-Care, Self-Worth

It is no secret that I have always been a beach junkie; when asked where I find the most happiness, my answer has always been the beach. There is just something so calming for my generally Type A personality, like as long as I am near the ocean, I can truly relax and let go of all things that stress me out or weigh me down.

After my last several vacations have been adventures in Las Vegas, where even though I was vacationing, I was also drinking excessively, gambling, seeing shows, walking in heels, and being generally overstimulated by lights and sounds, a week at the coast was a very welcomed treat. I had no plans, no agenda, nothing to do...just a stack of chick flicks, another stack of new books, my fuzzy slippers, and my best friend.

We were gone 5 days. 5 days is the longest I have been away from my office in almost a year. 5 days is the longest I have had no plans in as long as I can remember. It was 5 days of relaxing, agenda-free, stay-up-late-and-sleep-in bliss. The weather was gorgeous, we ate delicious food, drank tequila, took walks, shopped, watched movies, and read books.

In 5 days, I read 3 books cover to cover. That's a lot of reading, and it was perfection. I read, I sucked up what I was reading, I enjoyed every page, and I stayed up too late to read "just one more chapter," which of course turned into "just another chapter." Until there I was at 2am, out of chapters at the end of the book.

I have learned that there is nothing as vital to my sanity and well being as rest, relaxation, and self care. Self care looks different for everyone. Self care may be a long run or a hike, it may be a movie or a concert, or it could mean an art class or some other artistic expression. For me, self care is being lost in a book. Being able to curl up on the sofa, under a blanket, and get lost in the pages of a really good book, is what grounds me and what makes me feel like I am truly taking care of myself.

Whatever self care and self love look like for you, make sure you take that time and get it done. Take the time to find what it is that truly makes you feel good, and then make the time to do that more often. If you feel best when you're laying on the couch playing video games, do more of that. If you feel amazing when you take long, hot baths, great. Read trashy magazines or go for a long drive. Listen to bad music, loudly. Ride your bike. Go to movies.

Whatever it is that makes you breath deeply, and that lets you feel that overwhelming sense of calm, do more of it. If you don't know what it is, look for it. Everyone - whether you work one job, three jobs, or stay at home raising babies - needs to love and care for themselves in order to be healthy. You have to love yourself first. Make that happen.

5 days at the beach, with good weather, good books, and good people was exactly what I needed to reboot, recharge, and come home with a shiny, happy attitude. And I have forced myself to make time for books on the couch twice a week since I've been home,  because you can't always just take 5 days and leave town. My point is, find what it is that makes you tick, and do it.

Calm the Fuck Down and Be Happy.