Self-care is a buzzword these days and for good reason: self-care rocks. Who doesn’t want to be encouraged to take a little time to nourish the soul, pamper the body, and rest the brain? For those in recovery from addiction and alcoholism, self-care is essential. Living life on life’s terms can be a little exhausting now and then. Thankfully, you’re a human being and not a machine. Unfortunately, when you start succeeding in recovery, feeling better, and living a busy life, that can be easy to forget. Since you don’t have a technician to turn you off and tune you up, you have to learn to take care of yourself. Everyone needs a break to recharge and reboot. Developing your own system of self-care is a self-discovery process, a fun process, and a process that will stick with you for a lifetime.
What Does Self-Care Look Like?
What each person needs to feel taken care of, relaxed, and supported is different per individual. Someone might need a good moshing session to heavy metal while someone else needs to sit and listen to Yo Yo Ma. Self-care for some is going on a hike while self-care for others includes a foot massage. Your self care regimen can include immediate actions like taking a walk or meditating and actions you have to schedule like spending an afternoon at the beach or laying in bed a few extra hours on a Saturday morning.
How Is It Done?
First, ask yourself, what do I need right now? Your basic needs should be met, including hygiene, food, and water. Second, you might need something else. Do you really need a drive around town right now, a supportive call from a friend, or a good nap (everyone needs a good nap now and then)? In the beginning, your mind might plainly tell you what you need is a good drink. Self-care is about creating new habits and routines to replace that need for relief and euphoria. Who needs a drink when you’re lavishing yourself in a lavender scented bubble bath?
When Should You Self-Care?
Weekends are a great way to schedule forty eight hours or more full of self-care. Throughout your day you can take little moments of self-care in intervals of just a few minutes to sustain you. Self-care should happen whenever you need it to, when you’re feeling burned out, pent up, exhausted, anxious, depressed, stressed, angry, happy, breaking down, breaking through- whenever you need a “me” moment, identify what you need and find a way to support yourself.