As we launch into the habit of taking care of ourselves this month, it might be best to explore four reasons why we don’t take care of ourselves. If you are familiar with the Mind the Gap tool, Elena Aguilar uses it in Chapter 6: Take Care of Yourself to explain why this is hard for us:
- We’re missing information. Let’s call this a knowledge gap. Sometimes we hear new information (or even something we’ve heard before) about exercise or sleep or kale, and it catapults us into behavior change.
- We don’t know how. We want to eat better, but where do we start? What exactly do we do? We all have skill gaps of different sizes. Self-care is learned.
- We don’t really think we need to care for ourselves. We get by on minimal sleep, we can teach with a cold and we figure we can rest later. This is a will gap.
- We don’t feel we deserve to take care of ourselves. We feel that our value is tied to our output and if we don’t work hard, people won’t respect us, like us, love us, or want us. We don’t say no to anyone; we take on too much work and overcommit. This is an emotional intelligence gap. Valuing yourself and feeling that you are worth self-care are core to emotional intelligence.
So take some time to figure out what your gaps are with self care. The reason you are even reading this blog post is because you want to be emotionally resilient. A healthy, well-rested body is foundational to that. Make the commit to yourself to start better self care now. There is no better time then the present.