Rub-a-dub-dub: Lessons for Self-Care
Updated: Jun 27, 2019
Last night I did something that was somewhat out of character for me. I practiced some good old fashioned self-care. Well, the fact that I was practicing self-care wasn’t really what was out of character, although, I don’t take time for myself nearly as much as I probably should. What was so crazy about this particular self-care session was the fact that I put my need for self-care above everyone and everything else in my household. So, I bet you’re wondering what great, lavish, over-the-top activity I participated in for this glorious self-care. Whelp, I won’t keep you in suspense any longer! I. Took. A. Bath!
Now I know to those of you that live a life of extravagance, you may get to take a bath two or maybe, dare I say it, three times a week. I don’t have that luxury. I’m lucky to be able to bond with my soaker tub twice a month. So yeah, this may not seem like a big deal to you. But for me, it meant I was giving myself permission to not be in charge of dinner, helping my daughter find her once again lost glasses, or putting in a load of laundry. And, because of the timing, this also meant that my daughter would have to take a shower instead of a bath that night because there just wouldn’t be enough hot water for two baths that close together. And that was the kicker. For me, this was a gut wrenching decision. My daughter loves to take baths and I knew that if I took a bath that night, it would be depriving her of something she really enjoys. Of course, the most important thing is for her to get clean, and a quick shower would do the trick, it still felt like I was being selfish for “taking” her bath time play away from her for my own personal needs. And I do mean needs. I was exhausted. I had a long day at work, was stuck in rush hour traffic for an hour on the way to get home, and was famished by the time I finally walked through the door. I was cranky. I needed to take time to unwind and relax.
I finally decided that my need outweighed her want and ran the bath water. I turned down the lights, added bath salts and bubble bath, and lit my relaxation incense. Then I stepped into the tub and something amazing happened. I relaxed. And as I relaxed, my distorted thinking lessened and I realized that taking this time for myself was not harming my family. I also realized how badly I needed this time to myself. And most importantly, I realized that I deserved it.
So, I took a nice, long, hot bath that melted away the tension in my muscles as the aromatherapy incense helped clear my mind. It really was an awesome bath. And when I got out, I felt relaxed and renewed. And something else amazing happened. I had the energy to cuddle up with my daughter and read her a bedtime story, silly voices and all. I don’t think I would have been able to do that had I not taken that time for myself. By practicing self-care, I was able to accomplish a fundamental activity that gets me closer to achieving one of my Brass Ring Goals (more on that in an upcoming post). And I can almost guarantee that my daughter enjoyed story time cuddled up in Mommy’s bed 10x more than she would have enjoyed taking a bath all by herself, no matter how much she loves bath time. That’s the beauty of self-care. It not only does you good, but your regular self-care is just as important to those you love. We simply can’t be “on” 100% of the time; and that’s ok. Allow yourself the luxury of putting yourself first from time to time. Even if it is only a 40 minute bath!
How do you practice self-care? Let me know!
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