SELF-CARE IDEAS FOR A HEALTHIER YOU
Earlier this month I was thrilled to have been invited by the NY Junior League to one of their 2019 Wellness Day panels. We talked about all things self-care, a topic that has been getting a lot of attention lately, especially by, for, and among women.
I got to meet an extraordinary group of smart, fun, interesting, and driven female healthpreneurs. We had a wonderful conversation about how to take care of ourselves (before taking care of others!), and I was inspired by what everyone had to share.
Here is a sneak peek, so you don’t feel you missed out!
What does self-care mean?
This varies based on who you ask. Personally, self-care means honoring what I consider our most precious assets – our body, mind, and spirit – by making time for them every day and committing to my non-negotiables.
For me, those non-negotiables are healthy, good quality, and yummy food without distractions, a solid fitness routine that keeps me sane and happy and be surrounded by the right people with the right energy.
And prioritizing time and setting intentions are the best tools that we all have to make that happen. We continuously say and hear “I don’t have time to do this or that” but the reality is that time is the only thing we have. What’s important is to spend it wisely and on the things that you care most for. It can be the difference between being successful – whatever success means to you – or feeling disappointed.
We talked about self-awareness and self-love, setting realistic expectations and to-do’s to create a healthy work/life balance, and a big must: putting your oxygen mask on before helping others. Great analogy!
Why so much interest in the idea of women’s self-care?
Stress and anxiety have become a significant struggle for everyone, but especially for women, as we have to juggle our personal and family life with our professional careers. We realized we need to do something about it and quickly, and the solution is definitely not medication or anti-depressant drugs but self-care.
Also, the stereotype, and unfounded myth, that we’re better at multi-tasking than men has hurt us immensely. We end up doing more of everything, not well (because multitasking doesn’t work, really), and diverting our attention to tasks that won’t take us where we need to be. It’s an unhealthy vicious circle that ends in frustration, stress, and a sense of failure no matter how hard you try.
Let’s change that! What’s a good self-care routine?
When it comes to nutrition and hydration, we all agreed that having a full glass of water with freshly squeezed lemon right after waking is the best, most simple thing you can do to start your day. This will alkalize your body, flush toxins out, help with digestion, rehydrate, and support your immune system.
Have a healthy breakfast between 30-60 minutes after your water to boost your metabolism. Breakfast is indeed the most important meal of the day!
Visualization is something I do every day. I think about how I want my day to look like and set intentions, BUT if I cannot get to everything, that’s ok. I’ve learned to stop torturing myself.
Eating the right food for you as an individual will get you 80% of the way to being your healthiest ever. Having a fitness routine, sleeping well, and knowing when to stop and relax, will get you to 100%.
My fave daily “stress busters”: the infamous 4-7-8 breathing technique, a bath of Epsom salt, a good mani-pedi, a weekend away, or a fun dinner with friends and hubby….ok, ok, a fantastic glass of St. Emilion will do it too!
We talked about how nourishing yourself with healthy nutrients is one thing but being able to absorb that amazing goodness is the real deal. “You are what you can absorb” is the new “You are what you eat.” If your microbiome is not healthy, no matter how much goodness you put into your body, it won’t be able to use it.
Why putting yourself first is NOT SELFISH
The analogy of “putting your oxygen mask on before helping others” says it all. If you’re not happy, healthy, fulfilled, self-loved, excited, or in control of your life, you cannot help others get there either.
And who doesn’t want to be healthy? No one I want to believe, but it takes more than wishful thinking to make it happen.
For the majority of my new clients, not having a self-care routine is driven by 2 things – a lack of know-how and/or a lack of accountability. There is so much confusing and contradictory information out there about what you should or shouldn’t eat, do or buy, and so many fit-for-all diets that don’t work for most people that it’s difficult to be motivated and know what to do.
I help women navigate all that. I also do a lot of “detective work” to find the root causes of their symptoms so I can build a plan that fits their body type and lifestyle.
For the really busy types (everyone really!) I build easy to follow plans, so they don’t have to think about shopping lists, recipes or where to get their healthy meals, snacks, or grocery shopping from. I coach them every step of the way by bringing accountability and commitment to meet their goals. Motivation is key here, and the results are impressive.
I hope you feel you were part of this Wellness Day and learned a few things to take better care of yourself!