Hi, I’m Mimi and I love my body. You would think that someone who was, until recently, over 300lbs would have a difficult time saying that. But I do. I love my body. It is an amazing place to live.
That said, I don’t always LIKE my body. Who does? It has aches, it has rolls, it can be messy, and it can be weak. But for the most part, I do like it. And I think a lot of that love for my body comes from my system of self-care.
We hear a lot about self-care and how important it is to love your body no matter its shape or size, and there are a lot of tips out there on how to improve your self-care. We read these ideas and think, too-expensive, too time-consuming, too selfish, too, too, too.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Self-care translates to better relationships in your life. If that is not worth a splurge on yourself, I don’t know what is.
When you indulge in the things that relax you and leave you feeling refreshed, everyone in your life can feel the decreased tension in you. Your improved attitude can improve the attitudes of those around you.
Women, unfortunately, are more guilty of putting aside self-care than men. We tend to place other’s needs above our own, and that leaves little time to tend to ourselves. While women are more likely to do this, that doesn’t mean men are off the hook!
What do I mean by self-care?
A lot of times, when I find myself getting cranky, or out of sorts, or just plain hating the way I look in the mirror (don’t tell me you haven’t been there), I realize that what I’m really lacking is a little ME time.
For me, that means throwing a bath bomb in the tub and a nice hour long soak (or longer). Every three weeks, I go get my nails done. I’m a nail biter, have been all my life, and if I am not wearing acrylics, I hide my hands as much as I can because they are just awful! But I get my nails done and I don’t feel ashamed to put my hands out there.
I found a new hair stylist a little over a year ago and I’ve made an awesome friend in her. Every 6 weeks when I go in to see her, it’s like a little mini therapy session for the both of us. And I come out of it looking Ah-Maz-Ing.
Yes, I’m still overweight and I still have bad days and bad hair days, but I know that after I stop in to sit in my friend’s chair and chat while she works a miracle on my head, I’m going to leave and feel fantastic not just for an hour, not just a day, but weeks.
Self-care is not just good for you!
I know, I know, my self-care can get expensive, and it’s time-consuming (4-hour color sessions anyone?), but for me, they are entirely worth it. And the way my husband’s face lights up when he sees me preening in front of a mirror that I’ve been actively avoiding…that is priceless!
Here’s a little more information on how self-care can affect your relationships from Nadja Geipert at LA Family Therapy: Why Self-Care Makes You A Better Partner And Improves Your Relationships
You don’t have to spend a ton of money to do the things you love and that bring you joy. Give yourself an hour to go to the park with a book and sit in the sunshine. Enroll in yoga. Go to your local library and scan their hobby section for something new to try. Curl up on the couch with a cup of coffee or tea and watch one of those shows you have on the DVR just sitting and waiting. Or throw on some music and dance like no one is watching. Dancing with my husband is one of the self-care things that he and I love to do together!
Do it now!
If you are waiting until you have time to do something for yourself, you’re going to be waiting forever. You have to make time for you! Don’t put it off until you are ready to snap. Schedule it! Pencil into your calendar. Me Time: Thursday at 5:30.
Fall in Love with Your Body
Happiness usually goes hand in hand with health, both physical and mental. Make time to make yourself happy. It will do wonders for your whole outlook. When I really started to care for myself, I found myself falling in love with my body. And I wanted to make the way I felt inside, reflect on the outside.
When you start taking care of yourself mentally, taking care of yourself physically starts to become less of a chore. When you start to love your body (remember, I didn’t say you have to like it!) you want to take better care of it. The better care you take of it, the more you’ll love it. This is one cycle I don’t mind being in.
What do you do as self-care? List your suggestions in the comments!