Throughout my life I have been a supporter of self-care. I personally believe that in order to be of service to others, we must first be of service to ourselves. Healthy soil is needed to produce healthy crops, the same goes for us.
I frequently hear the tones of jealousy when I am headed to the beach or to see my massage therapist. The same thing occurs when I discuss my annual yoga trip to Mexico (@yoginirixie). Rarely does someone connect with my self care, which leads me to believe that they do not have a practice in place for themselves.
Unfortunately, self-care comes across as being selfish. I choose to see it as a boundary I set for myself. Yes there are more important things in life than my mani-pedi, but I have personally chosen to set aside time every three weeks to visit the spa. I do yoga a couple of times a week, I workout every morning, and I make arrangements to visit the beach at least once a week. I do all these things for my own personal well-being, so I can be the best version of me for the other people in my life.
The more I take on in life, the more self care is needed. Just like a car, a standard oil change is every 5K miles, it may take 6 months or 2 months to reach that. It all depends on how far the car is being driven each month.
Women, mothers in particular, tend to lack self-care. Especially when they are tasked with caring for family members. There is a false idea that there is no time for “selfish en devours”, but in reality these are the times when self-care is needed the most. I know my 19 year old self did not need monthly acupuncture sessions like I do now. I have much more on my plate these days. I gift myself with health and personal care on a regular basis.
Bottom line, take care of yourself, love yourself, and respect yourself.
When I was younger, I assumed that I would meet someone with similar spiritual interests. In my mind’s eye we would attend conferences together, read the same books and grow spiritually as a couple. Thirteen years ago I married my husband; our spiritual paths appear to compliment each other, but rarely do they coincide.
My husband is actually educated in a number of religious beliefs and practices. We share an attraction to Buddhism, although I have yet to see him meditate. Over the years we have shared in a couple of events, such as our children’s baptism and hearing His Holiness the Dalai Lama speak. Overall my spiritual endeavors have been in solitude.
I certainly appreciate my husband’s support of my spiritual path. I am fortunate that he understands my spiritual needs and quests. As long as our needs are being met, he is at ease.
Still there are times, particularly when I travel, that I wish he were there. Of course, I notice the other couples in attendance and I think it would be nice to share the experience with my husband. I know that we are together for a reason and I accept that our spiritual paths are very different. Without this acceptance I would not have experienced the other opportunities that have come my way.
At a recent training conference, I met another woman in a similar situation. We instantly formed a bond and spent the week together. If my husband or her husband had been in attendance, that opportunity would not have presented itself in the same manner. I am grateful to have had the experience of making a new friend.
With my husband’s support and understanding I have been able to meditate in the Great Pyramid, visit New Grange, travel to Iceland and each year I enjoy a yoga retreat in Mexico. Along the way I have gathered invaluable experiences and made unforgettable connections. I have been able to add to my holistic practice and I am going to embark on a year long transformational experience with the Tarsia Center starting next month.
These experiences have led me to believe that spiritual preferences and endeavors do not have to be experienced by both sides of a couple. At times those paths may cross, but as long as there is support within the relationship things will work out. I cherish the time I spend working on my spiritual growth apart from my husband. I also look forward to the times and adventures I share with him when we are together. Being spiritually single as helped me grow on my spiritual path and I am thankful for the experience.
When it came to aptitude tests, I was always well rounded. My scores never provided definitive answers to a college major or career. Basically I would be good at anything I tried. That would have been excellent, but I am 35 and still have no idea what I want to be when I grow up.
Generally, I have excelled at my work endeavors, but I have yet to find one I truly loved. The closest I came was working in a full service Marriott; at the time it was great and I enjoyed the work tremendously. Now I have two young children and working in an industry which never closes is far less appealing. Regardless of my job placement, I have always felt that I was in the right place at the right time.
Earlier this year I decided to create my dream job. I created a mission statement and vision statement, I even created a space for my new career. All I needed was a dream and I would be ready to embark on my new adventure.
In the twenty plus years since those aptitude tests I was no closer to a dream job. I could tell you what I didn’t want, and I knew I wanted to make own schedule while helping others on their spiritual paths. I was also fearful to lose any income while embarking on my new endeavor.
Feeling a bit lost, I turned to speaker and author Jon Acuff for guidance on building the career I wanted. Through personal experiences and humor, Acuff helped me to understand myself better. For the first time in my life I had some sense of direction. Right now I am in the phase of not quitting my day job, so I can build my dream job. I have found this step to be very important because it practically illuminates the fear I have about creating my own career.
Today I feel as though I received an unlabeled box from Ikea. I have all the pieces and tools, but the instructions are vague and I don’t know what the final product will be. I can’t tell where my heart lies; am I to build a chair or shelving unit? The one underlying theme throughout all my career research goes back to the movie Field of Dreams, “If you build it they will come.”
I need to stop worrying about the outcome and start building my dream to see where it takes me. I know that if my spirit, mind, and body are in the right place then my dream will unfold. I also know that in time my dream will change and that will be okay too. Today is the day I punch fear in face and get on with my life.