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Mental Health,  Self Care

What Self Care Really Means

The term self care covers many different activities, mindsets and habits that are all centered around, you guessed it, caring for yourself. But there’s a lot more that goes into self care than you might think. Hint, it’s more than bubble baths and pedicures. Here’s what self care really means.

Whitney Barkman - What Self Care Really Means
— Self Acceptance

Part of caring for yourself is accepting yourself. As you are, right now in this moment. Flaws, mistakes, insecurities and all. Easier said than done, right? There can and will always be growth, changes and shifts to explore, but the real key to self care and a balanced mental state is accepting yourself, wherever you may be, right now. Moving forward through growth from a place of self acceptance actually sets the foundation for more sustainable and healthy change.

— Self Love

Another big, trendy term right now. But it’s important and again, it builds a strong foundation for any form of growth. Millions of women struggle with truly loving themselves. I know I struggled with this for many years. Self love really just means being kind, gentle and patient with yourself. You don’t need to do, have or be anything other than your unique, authentic self and realizing this is self love.

Whitney Barkman - What Self Care Really Means
— Remembering Your Own Needs

The only activities that need to fall under self care are these. Your own needs. These can vary week to week or day to day. These will vary from person to person. But true self care, is ensuring all your needs are met. Physically. Mentally. Spiritually. Taking a rest when you’re tired, choosing a healthy meal when you need energy, taking a bath if you need alone time, asking for help or guidance when you’re struggling with something. Take time each day to ask yourself what needs you need to take care of.

— Remembering Your Worth

This one is simple. Definitely not easy. But simple. You are worthy. Right now. You are worthy just by your very existence.

Whitney Barkman - What Self Care Really Means
— Self Forgiveness

We all make mistakes. We all say something we may later wish we hadn’t. But, we cannot change the past. What’s done is done. The only control you have is to choose differently in the present moment. Release regrets and understand that every “mistake” or “failure” you’e experienced is something you can learn from. You wouldn’t be where you are today without each and every experience you’ve had. Practice gratitude and forgiveness for your past. And choose differently in the present.

— Asking For Help

Last but not least. Self care can sometimes mean asking for help. I believe everyone has the power within themselves to heal, change and grow. But I also believe that having guidance through counselling, a coach, mentor or friend is extremely powerful. Don’t feel shame in asking for help if you need it. Looking after yourself and your needs sometimes requires outside support.

What area can you spend more time exploring in your self care? Where can you show yourself more kindness and release shame surrounding how you show up for yourself?

Love & Light
Whitney