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The JOY Factor: Mindfulness, Compassion, Positive Psychology, Healing, Yoga

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Sep 30, 2019

Welcome to Episode #25 of the JOY Factor podcast. Today’s show is brought to you by Care/Of. Everyone has a different path to personal health, and we're here to help you find yours. We believe in the power of technology, science, and human empathy to make the journey simpler. Let us help take care of you.

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Creating a Self-Care Map

When you hear the phrase “self-care”, what’s your first thought? what comes up for you? Just for a minute, notice your comfort level when the thought of taking care of yourself comes up. How do you define being good to yourself? What does it mean to you and when was the last time you thought about it? One thing is for certain, we can’t expand our capacity for a joyful life without having a lifestyle that is rooted in self-care.

So get comfortable and give yourself the time to listen to the show. We’re going to discuss a framework for starting a sustainable self-care practice and we’ll also be discussing 8 aspects of mind/body/spirit wellbeing. This will be more than enough information to help you create a personal map.

 Also, just a reminder that only you know what’s best for you. No one can define what that looks like but I’m hoping you will explore what you need and imagine how you might begin to implement some simple shifts in your day to day routine. So grab some paper and something to write with and we’ll take it away!

To start, let’s frame Sustainable Self-Care with 3 guiding principles.

Start Small, Stay Steady and Keep it sane.

I’m going to invite you to Just let these words sink in. Let any competing thoughts pass by and, just allow yourself to consider how you might bring these concepts alive in your life.

Start Small.

Tiny steps are better than no steps at all. There's no need for grand plans just small, consistent actions. With the right preparation, these little shifts can be woven into your daily life with just a few moments of effort on your part. What would it be like to take the smallest step possible? Small self-care steps can start anywhere or anytime. A few examples might include pausing to look at the moon, singing your favorite song out loud or breathing a little more deeply. Consider reaching out to friends you’ve lost touch with. Taking the stairs instead of the elevator.  Look around and see what else might be possible for you. Start small.

Be Steady

Having the kind of steady aim you need to move in your intended direction requires organization and commitment. The best organizational tool I have is a calendar. I still forget things but You know what is on there? Self-Care time. Non-negotiable. Not always perfect but consistent. We’re talking about a few minutes a day. So, put your name on the calendar and a reminder on your phone. Tell a friend you can trust what you’re up to. Better yet, share this episode with someone who would make a great accountability partner. Be open to whatever might represent a gentle nudge toward keeping your date with yourself a and strengthening a growing sense of commitment toward practices you can easily maintain. No self-care map is complete without time.

 

Finally, the 3rd guiding principal...Make it Sane.

Making it sane means there’s a built-in, natural blend of effort and ease from the start. Let’s unpack these two concepts of effort and ease.

Make effort means Thinking through your plan and being realistic about your goals. It also means considering what you’re willing to release from your life in order to make room for new habits. A final aspect of effort is being aware of how you support your efforts and how you sabotage yourself. 

The other aspect of making it sane is ease. You don't have to do everything all at once. Ease is all about releasing, letting go and exploring your capacity to be flexible and open.  

I think another aspect of Ease is also taking the time to enjoy the process by adding some special touches to your practice. Music, creating a nice space for self-care, having a sense of humor and anything else that allows you to show kindness to yourself are all important aspects of ease. So, when you think of effort and ease bookending the principal of making it sane, what does that look like to you?

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Now that we’ve discussed these 3 guiding principals of sustainable self-care: Start Small, Stay steady and Keep it sane. Let’s talk about the different aspects of wellbeing. Pay attention to what comes up for you as each of these are described. Notice what’s already going well for you and be curious about whether you want to include any of these on your own self-care map.

Take a look at the Sustainable Self Care Wellness Inventory identify goals for your self-care map and let me know how it's going. 

1.Stress Resilience/Happiness Practices- This is all about having the tools to protect yourself from stress, creating a gratitude practice, valuing regularly celebrating good times and having a support system during bad times.

  • I respond to changes in my life with a positive attitude. 
  • I believe that I deserve to enjoy my life and feel happy. 
  • I have at least 5 people who support me when I’m having a hard time and help me celebrate when life is good.
  • When I face a life challenge, I feel confident that I handle the accompanying stress in a healthy way. 
  • I’m clear on my boundaries and say “no” when I need to. 
  • I set realistic goals for myself. 
  • I have a gratitude practice and regularly stop to give thanks for my life.
  • I keep a journal and use it to reflect on my life and put my thoughts on paper.

2. PHYSICAL CARE & NURTURING

  • I get at least 30 minutes of exercise four times each week.
  • My dietary choices are healthy and good for me and I avoid eating after 8:00 p.m.
  • I consume at least 8 glasses of water daily.
  • I consume fewer than 5 alcoholic drinks per week.
  • I have a doctor or health care provider I trust and feel comfortable with.      
  • I take time to schedule a yearly physical and dental exam. 
  • I tend to my body through massage, reflexology, and/or yoga, other__________
  • I make a point of having a good belly laugh every day.

 

3. SPIRITUALITY & CREATIVITY

  • I have a clear sense of meaning and purpose in my life.
  • I am pleased with what I give back to the world.
  • I practice forgiveness toward myself and others.
  • I am part of a community that gives me meaning and purpose.
  • I have at least one creative pursuit I engage in regularly-drawing, painting, sculpting, music, poetry etc. 
  • I regularly seek out inspiration through literature, art or music.
  • I feel connected to something larger than myself. 
  • I have a spiritual practice that includes meditation, dream work, journaling, prayer, etc.

4. WORK & PERSONAL POTENTIAL

  • I work no more than 8 hours per day and do not take work home with me.
  • I have the training, background and tools to do my job well.
  • I feel good about my ability to communicate with others.
  • I stand up for what I believe in.
  • I set realistic goals for my life and consistently work toward reaching them.
  • I’m able to let go of mistakes I’ve made and know how to move on.
  • I spend my time and energy on things that really matter to me. 
  • I have mentors who offer me insight and guidance for my life and goals.

5. TIME, MONEY & ORGANIZATION

  • I feel good about the way I budget, spend and track my money.
  • I have good habits when it comes to managing my time and responsibilities.
  • My desk and workspace are organized and I can easily find what I need. 
  • I have little in my life that needs cleaning up or fixing.
  • I regularly set limits/boundaries and can say no when necessary.
  • I make time for self- reflection.
  • I feel good about the amount of free time I spend in front of a screen.
  • I have clarity around my vision, goals and daily tasks.
  • I am aware of how much I earn and where my money goes.

6. RELATIONSHIPS & CONNECTION

  • I feel that I am well attuned to the emotions and needs of my loved ones.
  • I have a network of friends on whom I can — and do — depend.
  • I am able to speak openly about my feelings when angry or worried.
  • I give and receive affection regularly.
  • The people closest to me feel seen, heard and valued by me.
  • I share responsibility for household tasks in a manner that supports the relationship.
  • I am open to change and question my beliefs, values, and principles.
  • In my main relationship, each of us assumes goodwill about the other.

7. EMOTIONAL WELLBEING & MINDFULNESS

  • I attend to my core values on a regular basis.
  • Notice inner experience (e.g. listen to and recognize thoughts, judgments, beliefs, attitudes and feelings)
  • I have a level of acceptance of my imperfections (self-compassion) and have the strength to let go of my fear and uncertainty.
  • I practice muscle relaxation, yoga, stretching, meditation or slow breathing. 
  • I am able to speak kindly and offer praise to myself appropriately.
  • I am able to deal with fear, guilt, and insecurity in a constructive way.
  • I have a positive image of my body.
  • I feel satisfied with where I am in my life. 

8. REST & PLAY

  • Joy and gratitude come easily to me, and I do things that bring me joy.
  • I enjoy getting out of bed most days, and look forward to the day.
  • I express my unique talents, strengths, passions, and dreams on a daily basis.
  • I feel good about the amount of fun I have in my life.
  • I am able to have fun and enjoy myself without drugs or alcohol.
  • When I wake up in the morning I feel rested and ready for the day.
  • I know how to wind down at the end of the day and look forward to relaxing.
  • I eagerly anticipate or think about future adventures I am planning.

So there you have it! You may have other aspects of self-care you’d like to include but hopefully, this information gets you inspired to sit down and reflect on what a sustainable self-care map looks like for you.

We’ll be talking more about self-care in the coming months because it really does form the foundation for more joy. Please drop by the JOY Factor Facebook Group to share your thoughts on today’s episode and tell us about your own self-care plans! Check out our show notes for more information on today’s show and please support the show by sharing it with a friend and leaving an honest rating and review on Facebook.  Thanks for listening and have a great day!

"For 25% off your first Care/of order, go to TakeCareOf.com and enter JOYFACTOR." This episode is brought to you by Care/Of. 

 

 

 

 

 

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