If It's Self-Care, Why Are All These People Here?

Self-Care by definition should mean it's gonna be a solo adventure right? Me, myself, and I. Some people on the outside looking in may wonder, why is she having happy hour when she's supposed to be practicing self-care?

Remember my blog post on the "8 Dimensions of Self Care?" I then devoted another post to the Environmental Dimension "When Staying Home For Self-Care Hurts."

Today's focus are the Social and Emotional self-care dimensions, they are a necessary part of wellness. Social and Emotional both include having a supportive network of people you can connect to and count on which is truly a gift. A supportive network of family and friends are vital for challenging and stressful situations, and they are there when you want to celebrate an accomplishment or a significant event.

Social Self-Care is having meaningful relationships, a supportive network of friends and family. It's about learning good communication skills, developing safe intimacy with others, building a sense of belonging, and connecting to the community.

So what does that really mean? It means evaluating your current relationships. Taking a look at the people around you, are they really supportive? Or do they drain you and bring you down? Just because you've been friends with someone for a long time doesn't mean you need to continue the friendship. It could be a friend you've have for 5,10, 15, 20 years or more, but maybe the friendship has changed over the years. Maybe you are realizing you were never really good friends in the first place, the friendship was one-sided, she or he always served the friendship with a side of negativity or hate, or the friendship was too much work and drained you emotionally. Take a look at the people around you and how you are when you are with each person. Do you like how you are when you are with each person? Are you always your best you? If not then consider what it is you want for yourself, and surround yourself with the people who best represent what you want for yourself.

Emotional Self-Care is about nurturing your own emotional needs by managing stress and coping with difficult emotions, as well as nourishing healthy relationships with others by setting boundaries as necessary. This dimension also includes establishing a supportive network of people around you which is where setting boundaries is imperative. See this post for additional information from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration how the eight dimensions affect your life. https://www.goiam.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/New-Eight-Dimensions-of-Wellness.pdf

For emotional self-care it really starts with doing some inner work. Facing your emotional needs means dealing with your own shit. I just talked about evaluating the relationships you have with those closest to you and deciding which relationships to continue, and which relationships to end. The one you really need to work out is the one with yourself. You may need to forgive yourself for past mistakes, deal with some demons you have yet to confront either on your own or through counseling, get some help with any addiction you may have whether it's with food, alcohol, substances, nicotine, a man/woman, shopping, etc. Because let's be real, emotional self-care means being honest with the person you see in the mirror everyday. Be real with yourself, because self-care begins with self-love and you gotta love yourself enough to deal with whatever keeps you up at night, or plays on repeat in your head.

Emotional self-care also includes spending time alone, and remembering the things you are grateful for. So this is a good time to learn meditation, or just spend time in the stillness, the quiet, and to start a gratitude journal to look back on when you are going through a challenging time.

Financial Dimension - is a feeling of satisfaction about your financial situation. It is a common stressor for many of us, so being able to minimize worry about this area can enhance your overall wellness.

I'm going to tackle the financial dimension real quick because I will never, ever be able to wax eloquently on this subject so let me get it out of the way. Math is my absolute worst subject, but I have always been the CFO (Chief Financial Officer) in my household whether married or single, I maintain a very good credit score and I handle my business, but don't you dare ask me to do any math problems or balance a checkbook. If you want financial advice I suggest you go to your bank or credit union as they have professionals there. Read any number of Suze Orman's books, Dave Ramsey's, or Tiffany Aliche, better known as The Budgetnista's book Live Richer. There are also numerous other books, apps, and budget sheets you can find with just a few clicks. And no I do not get any kickbacks or anything else for mentioning those books, I have just done my research and mentioned them to provide them as a resource because they have been helpful to me and people I know.

"There is enough time for self-care. There is not enough time to make up for the life you'll miss by not filling yourself up."

--Jennifer Williamson