Self-care is so important but is often one of the hardest things maintain in our day to day lives.

This week I have really taken the time to do things for myself.  I am a person that easily gets burnt out from taking on too much and I often feel guilty for dropping classes or feel like I am letting people down.  However, I have had a slow week this week and rather than going frantic over admin tasks, I have allowed myself to stop and just be.

Slowing down is what we, as humans, seem to find the hardest thing to do.  We live in such a go-go-go society that it is easy to get caught up in the rat race.  As a yoga teacher, people seem to assume that I have my life together and I am zen and relaxed all of the time.  I can assure you that this is not the case at all!  Burn-out as a yoga teacher is incredibly common.  At one point I was teaching seven days a week and it was way too much!  Teaching yoga is a job which requires a lot of energy and I want to be able to give my students my all but that can really deplete your own personal energy reserves.  Now some teachers can handle teaching around 30 classes a week and absolutely boss it, and to those teachers – I salute you!  Personally, I can’t.  I need rest, I need time out.  I am somebody who takes on other peoples issues (as well my own) and so having quiet time is a must for me!  However, that is often easier said than done!

I continuously preach self-care to my students and friends but ironically I am terrible at caring for myself!  This is something I have been really working on this past year – due to being so exhausted by the end of last year that my own wellbeing was at an all time low!  I am no where near perfect at this.  I still get carried away with work and going out and then make myself ill.  Or I will go through a week of eating badly and make myself look, and feel, less than desirable!  But there will always be ups and downs and we cannot beat ourself up about it.  What matters is that we try to improve our life whenever we can and learn from our mistakes.

So, what have I don’t this week to take care of myself?  Well, let me tell you!

  • I booked in for a haircut – my hair hasn’t seen a pair of scissors for about 6 months, so was well in need of a trim! Plus I find the act of someone else washing your hair and making you look nice very soothing!
  • I went for a wander in town – I didn’t actually buy anything, but it was nice having a potter and aimlessly strolling without any agenda.
  • I booked myself in for a massage.  I am lucky that the physio I work at offers me a lovely discount and so I finally took advantage of it!  I have worked there for nearly a year now and have only just utilised the awesome team they have there!  It was blissful and really sorted my shoulders and neck out – the place I carry all my stress and tension!
  • I listened to audiobooks.  Audiobooks are one of my favourite things and I love having them on in the car.  But this week I have made the most of them in the house.  Literally just sitting on the sofa with a cup of tea and tuning in.
  • I took many, many baths.  Get those candles lit, bit of music on and chill out!  Or rap a magazine and have a little read when you wash all those worries away.
  • Finally, I am going to head out for a pedicure later today and treat my feet to a little TLC.

I know half of these are money based and I am not suggesting that in order to give care for yourself you need to splash the cash but as I rarely do any of these things, it is nice to treat myself once in a while.  If you can afford to do so, then do!  I don’t feel guilty about it!  If, however, you are in one of those exciting financial slumps of life currently, then take time to have a bath, read a book, go for a walk or give yourself a home manicure / pedicure / facial – whatever you need!  I honestly feel so much better for this week.  It has lifted my spirits and it has also been a good reminder that I do deserve these things, I deserve to be looked after.

In short, I need to practice what I preach.

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