Did you know that September is Self Care Awareness Month?
One of our volunteers talks to us about how we can implement little steps into our day when we are in need of some self care:
Everyday is never the same. Some days are easier- you didn’t hit the snooze button five times in a row, the hot water is running and the toast isn’t burnt. But some days are so bad that we keep thinking it will not get any worse and then guess what? It DOES get worse. But this is okay.
One of the big reasons that people come to us at IMAlive is to talk about the big problems. Our goal as responders is to help them some of these small steps in order to work through the larger problems.
So today, I’ll be pointing out some reasons that can be helpful to remain positive in our everyday life. Instead of focusing on the negative sides that are going on in our lives, we can focus on the positive (I know it sounds cheesy but truly it works!).
1. Small moments: Sometimes we get so occupied with obsessing over the big stuff we tend to overlook some of the small moments that could be enjoyed. As in, do you ever appreciate if a person holds a door for you in a restaurant or maybe in an elevator? Or it has just become a random thing that is too unimportant for you to notice. Instead of waiting for some huge change in life we can begin to notice and embrace small moments of happiness. This can be a small way to improve our everyday life.
2. Goals: Setting goals is always important. It will be hard sometimes to even take one little step but by setting goals, we give our best effort to reach the desired goal. Just remember, some days will not be easy and taking baby steps will help you achieve your goal. And with every set of goal, you will reach your destination.
3. Helping people: We tend to be obsessed with ourselves and sometimes, forget to care about other people. It makes us utterly indifferent about other people’s feelings. What makes me wonder is that helping another person is never the first thing that comes to our head. We often forget how good it feels to help another human being. So be a friend to an acquaintance, be an acquaintance to a stranger. Remember, kindness always wins in the end.
4. Books with tea: Is there a better combo than a book with a cup of tea? I don’t think so! Imagine the perfect background, it is raining outside and you do not have to go out. It is a chill day and you turn to your favorite book. But without a nice cup of tea all of these become incomplete. So instead of giving your best effort everyday, take a chill day from time to time. It will only make you stronger.
5. Take control: Taking control of your life is never easy. We cannot predict our future. Instead of hoping to control your life fully, you can control small things, as in, your choices and your judgment. There are many ways to get a hold of your life like exercising, meditating and sometimes hobbies help too.
6. Start fresh: After going through a tough period in life, it is common for people to start anew. First thing to consider is cutting out the negative people in life. Do not dwell in the past because nothing good can come from this. Take your past as a lesson and move forward. And of course be surrounded by people who were always there for you. That takes us to the next point.
7. Friends and family: It is always important to be close to family and friends because after all they are the ones who made us into who we are. But the most important thing to remember in this case is that family is not always DNA. Keep in contact with the people who were supportive of you and who did not hesitate to point out when you were about to make a mistake. Keep in mind that sometimes when we feel like our friends or family are against us, they really just want to help and support us but don’t know how. They might be able to help with the little steps to get you back on your feet – just ask.
8. “Well on the bright side…”: Call me Miss Brightside or whatever but I have a motto that says “Everything happens for a reason.” It always helps to find a silver lining whenever things go the way you did not want. Focus on the things that you have and always try to have a glimmer of hope that will go a long way.
9. Keep yourself motivated: Finding encouragement in doing everyday work is difficult and it is something that is often underestimated. There is a huge difference in doing a job with motivation and without motivation. Without motivation, the work seems like a lot and often it causes us to feel depressed. We have people in our life to whom we can turn to for motivation. We can also listen to motivational speeches and read books to give us a nudge in the right direction.
10. Embrace your flaws: No one is perfect and so isn’t the world. Your flaws make you who you are and no one has a right to question your identity. Be unique, be real and always embrace your quirkiness.
11. Don’t regret nothin’: In life we make decisions of which we are not proud of. But like I said before, nothing good comes out by dwelling the past. There are also some memories, which we would like to rewind thousands of times. But all of these combined made you the way you are today. Some choices that do not feel right might turn you into a different person who you do not wish to be. Do not be hard on yourself, live life, make memories and do not regret anything.
12. Reach out: Sometimes a cup of tea or maybe exercising is not enough to move past something. In this case, remember that you are not alone. There are lots of people going through what you are going through right now. You can chat anonymously today with one of our trained crisis responders: here
13. Give yourself credit: When you are going through a tough time, give yourself credit for even doing the smallest of all tasks. Like, “Yay I got out of bed this morning! I put on clothes, makeup and went out today! And also, I have made a new friend!” There is nothing wrong in giving yourself credit.
Overall, these can be the things that might make you feel differently about life. So smile, enjoy life and live everyday like this is your last. Remember that you are precious and important.