WRITTEN BY RACHEL McCLUSKY
As the world closed last year, it seemed that our only option was to lean into self care and tap into practices that helped us cope with the devastating state of our world. And over a year later, as the world starts to reopen, self care seems to be slipping as we adjust to our new normal.
On a personal note, when the world first shut down, I was furloughed from my job, and was used to being busy for 12 hours out of the day. All of a sudden, there was a collective pause, and I had to adjust to doing less and leaning into self care. I actually wrote myself a schedule every day to stay sane and every day I scheduled self care in from 6:30-9pm. I would talk to friends on FaceTime, take a bath, make a healthy dinner, journal, meditate, or go where I felt called. I had never tapped into self care with such a great amount of time available to me and I truly believe that it was the wake up call that I needed to slow down and allow this time for myself. I live alone and although I know this was not the case for so many, it allowed me to connect with myself even more.
Fast forward to when the world started opening up a little bit. That daily self care time dwindled to an hour and the anxiety of adjusting to being around more people every day and easing back into a busy schedule became a struggle for me. My self care had to shift. So often self care can be categorized into baths, face masks, massages etc. At this stage of my life self care meant listening to my gut. It meant that if I had overcommitted, I had to cancel. It meant I had to allow myself to change plans if I felt that was what I needed. It looked different than It had a few months prior and that is okay. Cancelling, changing plans, taking time to be alone was my self care.
As the world begins to fully open up, my self care is shifting, yet again. I can be so quick to want to rely on the methods of self care that are comfortable for me. But what I’m learning is that I have to be open to what self care looks like for me on any given day may be different. One day it may mean waking up an hour earlier to meditate and ground. It may mean getting out of LA and spending a day by the water or in the mountains. It may mean taking a full day off of work to allow myself to recharge. What I’m learning is that it may look different every single day. As the world shifts, as we shift, as we lean into who we are and what we need, we learn and tap into what form of self care looks like for us in any given moment. Allow it to look different. Allow it to shift and change.
Allow it to be your personal practice that you discover on your own. Allow it to be what fills you up. Allow it to be what helps you take care of yourself.