In our latest blog posts, we’ve been writing on topics that touch on the subject of ‘self-care’. Funnily enough, we’ve never actually written anything on its definition and what self-care means to us…so this is a mini-blog dedicated to what self-care is (and what it isn’t).
So what is ‘self-care’ ?
These days, we see that term thrown around quite often online, specifically on social media. The half-serious and half-joke definition for self-care by most people is a personal indulgence in the midst of tough situations or difficult periods in life…and to be fair, this is a fairly accurate definition. But all jokes aside, self-care are things that are good for our mental, physical and spiritual well-being: exercising, eating healthy, keeping in touch with our loved ones etc. Seems clear cut and easy enough right? the complications are ostensible acts of self-care that avoids the problem, or that it becomes too indulgent that it creates imbalance, or that we are over-reliant on one type of self-care that it stops being self-care.
You might be asking: when does something stop being self-care then? Watching an hour (or two even) of Netflix after a hard day’s work is self-care but spending your whole day binging on a tv show is probably not the best thing to do. Eating junk food every now and then is fine but eating it often is not. Important to note and remember that Self-care may not always be something enjoyable to do and sometimes, it can even be slightly unpleasant. Simply because we may not like what is good for us. Self-care might even entail confronting parts of ourselves that we don’t like, that we are ashamed of or that we hide from others and our-selves.
Because we have not been properly trained to process our thoughts and emotions, we get uncomfortable with them and we push them into our mental closet. One of the key aims of self-care is to become more self-aware – to process our thoughts and emotions better. For example, if something bad happens or you had a bad day, self-care can assist you in processing them so you don’t carry it with you for the day or the week, the month and for some, unfortunately, for years.
Ultimately, the aim of self-care is not to directly remove your life’s problems but to give you the best possible chance of solving them. If you’re going through a struggle and you do self-care, you would be more likely to be mentally, emotionally and physically prepared to tackle it.
If you are interested and would like to know more about this topic, do consider checking out Alister Tieng’s Guide to Self-care.