One of the places I seem to come up short consistently, missing the mark throughout the year is in the area of “self care.”
Sure, I keep what feels like a gazillion doctors’ appointments each year to take care of my medical needs, and working out with a trainer twice a week, I’m now taking better care of my body in a new and different way.
But there’s so much more I want to do, and that I should be able to do – without guilt.
Take Breaks: “Breaks are the epitome of self care," says this article , and, in fact, I have an app on my work computer that pops up hourly, telling me to do just that. I want to do what it tells me – when it tells me to do it – without worrying about taking the time, or stressing about what new work will await me when I return to my desk.
Take Human Bites: The same is true for lunch, about which the article’s author says this:
Sometimes I treat self care as a reward. I’m so hungry I can barely think, but I’ll force myself to finish a batch of work before I eat lunch. What I’m really doing is making my job more difficult by allowing myself to run on fumes.OMG, has she been watching me at work?! Going forward, I want to make a conscious effort to stop for lunch (even though there’s no communal lunch space in my office), and stop the “daily scarf” that often ends with heartburn, indigestion, and what my father the parasitologist politely terms “gastrointestinal distress.”
Schedule Downtime: I want to learn not to overbook myself and that it’s okay to block out time just for me – to read, nap, watch the clouds, watch television, play Words with Friends, or do some other mindless thing to give my mind a break and let it refresh and recharge itself.
Indulge in Retail Therapy: Sure, I live on a tight budget, but that’s exactly why I’ve got a “freelance fund” for retail indulgences (and I use that term very loosely). Although it’s good to know it’s there for a rainy day, I want to learn to use it, on occasion, for things I want -- just because. Included on that list at the moment are this and this and this.
Yes, this is an ambitious list, but I know there’s nothing wrong with wanting any and all of these things, and I’m going to do my best to at least get some of them before the end of Elul. Stay tuned to keep track of my progress.
Inspired by Ima on (and off) the Bima , this #BlogElul post is one in a series marking the days of the Hebrew month of Elul, which precede the Jewish High Holidays and traditionally serve as a time of reflection and spiritual preparation for the new year.