We’re often told that doing for other people is a wonderful thing. Some even say it makes you a better person. Though there is certainly some truth to these cliches, it’s also important to care for and love ourselves. After all, if we are not well or have other pressing issues, we can’t be our best for others. This is the primary reason self-care is not selfish. We all have a responsibility to tend to our own gardens and offer the world the harvest after our needs are met.
Staying with that metaphor, what if we never tended that garden? What if we just let weeds take over? Right, the garden would not grow. It would likely die, and there would be no food or beautiful flowers for anyone to enjoy. Let’s take a look a few reasons why self-care is so important and, indeed, not selfish.
Self-Care Is Not Selfish #1: Increases Self-Awareness and Confidence
Taking time to purposefully treat yourself with care and love brings focus to the wonderful woman you are. Think of it as though you are your best friend. You want to spend time nurturing and loving that person, right? Well, guess what? You can be your own best friend. But that title is earned with love, gratitude, trust, and consistency. I know it takes some time and planning, but it’s so worth it. All that awareness and confidence helps you to shine your light in the world… which brings us to the next reason self-care is not selfish…
Self-Care Is Not Selfish #2: It’s Contagious
Consider also that your attention to self-care rubs off on everyone around you. Your friends, family, and those closest to you will follow in your footsteps. Your example has ripple effects that just might circle the globe. And, the more you do it, the more it inspires others. Think of it this way: a woman spends hours getting fit and healthy. Her tribe is curious and loves her results. They want what she has. She becomes the teacher, the mentor, the catalyst for their self-care and improvement. She then takes her self-care even more serious by enrolling in a level 2 fitness instructing course so she can continue the beautiful cycle.
This example shows how a simple thing like staying fit can affect others around us. Truthfully, we are teachers and mentors even if we don’t realize it. This is especially true when we have children who watch us more than they listen to us.
Self-Care Is Not Selfish #3: Greater Life Fulfillment
Life fulfillment is an extremely subjective thing. What one person believes is breathtaking and extraordinary, another might think boring and worthless. That said, it’s important to give yourself the chance to make those choices. Letting yourself fall into ill health and unkempt appearance becomes an excuse to hide from the world and life. I know because I’ve done it.
This state of mind can also lead to depression and anxiety. See where I’m going with this? Yeah, all that self-funk spells trouble for your relationships as well. In other words, taking all the opportunities you can to care for and love yourself brings a huge piece of the puzzle to everyone in your life. Without you, they would be missing something incredibly special.
Self-Care Is Not Selfish #4: It’s Empowering
There’s something that happens to some women as they take on roles like mother, wife, employee, daughter, etc. They actually give away their power by living for everyone else but themselves. The demands of life take over and they find little or no time for self-care. Unfortunately, this way of life takes a toll and can render these women helpless and without motivation. They spend too much time saying “yes” to everyone and “no” to the woman in the mirror.
In order to change this sad existence, we must value who we are and set strong boundaries where our time is concerned. I know, I know…it’s not easy. I am a mother of six children. Self-care has taken a backseat more times than I can count. But I’ve come to find out that I’m a much better mother when I just say “yes” to myself more often. It’s empowering to put yourself first.
Living in an empowered way and embracing self-care looks like you not apologizing for taking time for yourself. It looks like you being a badass mom who shows her kids it’s OK to treat yourself with loving kindness. You show the world you are here and you are important!