4 Harsh Truths About Self-Care
Updated: Jan 21
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This term 'self-care' is really confusing actually! How many times have you read a blog post about self-care tips or the benefits of practicing self-care?
I know, I've written some blog posts about self-care on this blog. Let me just tell you that I love the idea behind self-care. It's a nice-sounding concept.
I am so guilty of falling into the trap of self-care. I try to practice some methods but quite a few times, I've failed miserably. So, I decided to make a list of common misconceptions about self-care. I also want to help you realize that self-care is different for each person, it won't please everyone the same way.
Here is my list of harsh truths about self-care.
1. Self-care doesn't always make you feel good.
Don't know what exactly self-care is or how to practice it? Check out this helpful book.
When you practice an act of self-care, it's not always going to make you feel good. It might have no effect. Let me explain what I mean.
I was feeling so stressed before an exam one night so I thought I would take a hot bath and light some candles to practice "self-care". As I was lying in the tub, I realized I would rather re-read an important chapter of my textbook. Being in hot water wasn't making my worries or anxieties subside.
The point is: self-care may not offer a solution or an instant pick me up. But, having said that, it's still important to practice it and try to make yourself feel relaxed.
Just because you meditate, or read, or spend time watching a guilty pleasure show won't make problems go away. But, focusing on your mental health and well-being is ESSENTIAL.
So, maybe the bath won't help this one time, but if you keep taking this time for yourself, it can help in the long run.
“How we care for ourselves gives our brain messages that shape our self-worth so we must care for ourselves in every way, every day.”
-- Sam Owen
2. Self-care is expensive
It doesn't have to be, but it often is. Some of the things you love to do cost a lot of money.
If you love pampering yourself, you know those beauty and skincare products cost money. Sure, there are excellent $15 face creams like the Aveeno Positively Radiant Moisturizer.
But if you want something more luxurious, you'll spend over $60 on the likes of Fresh Rose Deep Hydration Face Cream.
The same thing goes for a lot of self-care items.
But, at the same time, these products are essential to a lovely pampering session and once in a while, you should splurge on yourself. I sure do.
I recently treated myself to my favorite shower oil from Rituals. My favorite scent is Happy Buddha, which smells like orange and cedarwood - it's truly a luxurious shower experience.
So, always invest in what you like and know will make you feel better or offer that much-needed comfort. A hot shower with a delicate shower gel can help ease tension after a long day's work.
3. You don't always have time for self-care.
Even if you set aside time for it, you just won't be able to take that time to practice self-care. We are busy, we have lots of things to do. That's normal and it's OK!
Don't stress about skipping a proposed self-care activity. If it stresses you out, it's not worth it. Move on and re-schedule it.
People will try to tell you that you need to set aside time each day for self-care. That's not necessarily true. If you're feeling well and everything is going well, you may not feel the need to pamper yourself.
Here's how you can become better at time management:
4. Self-care is a relative term.
What I mean by this is that self-care means something different for everyone. While reading a good book can be a self-care activity for you, it can be a chore for others.
Remember there is no 1 correct way to practice self-care, do what feels good to you, and follow your gut instincts.
Self-care is unique for each individual so don't try to follow a specific formula for success. There isn't one.
Want to try making more time for self-care? How about incorporating coffee breaks as part of your routine?
I hope these truths don't discourage you to practice self-care. They are meant to shed light on the difficulties of always practicing this wellness method. It's okay to neglect your self-care routine once in a while. So, go out and enjoy life!