Thinky Thursday: Non-Traditional Self-Care

The first Thinky Thursday of 2011! This sounds like a grand accomplishment until you consider that there was actually only one in 2010 as well. ;) But neveryoumind that – let’s just get on with it!

Thinky Thursday Question – Thursday, 1/07/11:

The definition of self-care is often dictated to us by family tradition, by the marketplace or by our peers. Things that fall outside socially acceptable definitions of self-care are often dismissed as unhealthy or indulgent. What are some ways that you care for yourself that might fall outside the status quo? Do you judge yourself for them? Have you learned not to judge yourself for them?

Post your responses in the comments and I’ll publish a post soon with a few selected responses. Thanks for sharing!

  1. For myself, I find having a night alone does wonder for my health and wellbeing. I need one night alone at least once a week, and thankfully, I am in a position where I can do that right now. It allows me to process what has happened during the week, relax and enjoy not talking for once. I used to think that actually wanting to be by myself was really strange and feared being labelled a “loner,” but now I really couldn’t care less because it makes me feel so good!

  2. The greatest thing that I can do for my well-being every day is to have a large breakfast full of fat and carbs in the form of fried eggs, cream cheese, bread, and sweet things. I have fried eggs and toast for breakfast as often as I can because it starts me off on the right foot every time. I find that I have more energy, I feel satisfied, and I don’t find myself getting hungry before i can get another meal. My mom kind of gasps in astonishment when I tell her what I eat for breakfast most days – that’s a lot of fat! – but it’s absolutely good for me.

  3. Quiet time with a book, looking out on the creek. I have always used this as retreat. Books and water.

  4. Oh my, self-care. I’ve been thinking a lot about this one in the past couple of weeks, especially with winter really setting in. I’m not good with winter, always had a bit of the SAD, and Jan and Feb are the worst. It takes a whole lot of work just to keep functioning, to keep myself reasonably okay, and to make sure I don’t do anything self-destructive. And some days that’s just too damn much, and I need to give myself time to just plain be depressed, to not force myself out of bed and into the real world, to not drag myself out to get some exercise to try and get myself a bit of energy, to not push myself into feeling okay, but to just plain be miserable, to stay with that and live in it and be in it, to let myself experience all the awfulness and apathy and crappiness and hopelessness of it all. If I don’t do that sometimes, I’ll end up burning out long before the evenings stretch out again in March and things don’t need to be forced to feel okay.
    So, yeah. For me, sometimes letting go of all my hard-learned self-care habits is the best thing I can do.

  5. I allow myself to envision the perfect breakfast (which I don’t eat until 10:30 or 11 – just not hungry until then). Then I try to come as close as I can to it. Yeah, I have to limit my carbs (diabetic) but I don’t go crazy with that. Some days I go up to Multnomah and eat at Fat City or O’Connors. It’s nice to have someone prepare a meal for me and clean up afterward.

    Monthly, I go to Esthetics Institute (on Powell about 23rd) for a pedicure and a facial. The pedicure is necessary – I can’t do it myself and I have to make sure my feet are in good shape and have a fun color on the toenails. The facial is just pure luxury for me. I usually have both done at the same time, and if the nail person and the facial person are massaging me simultaneously, I’ll often fall asleep. Because they’re a school, they’re very reasonable. I’ve been going there for maybe 10 years, and I’ve always been treated very well and the students are very professional.

    If I’m feeling a bit down, I entice one of my animals (two dogs and a cat) to lay on me or near me. My cat puts her nose against my nose or mouth and sometimes kisses my chin. My little dog seems happiest when she’s half on and half off my left side. The world is much better with living breathing critters in close proximity.

    Because my feet and legs were damaged in a car crash, every two weeks a lovely Rolfer comes to my house and brings them back to life for me. I can feel my feet change from ice cold to warm under her care and from dead to alive. Too bad I can’t afford for her to come every night.

    Not all that unconventional, but they make me feel better anyway.

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