Self-care to self-love – another platform?
Self-care to self-love – another platform?
What does this mean? Self-care to self-love? Is there another platform many of us are unaware of? I thought self-care was the buzz word and it was the only way to true health and wellbeing.
We often think self-care is something we do occasionally and half-heartedly. You know, when things get on top of us or during times of stress or even when a pain pops up in our bodies...
But what if one day, out of nowhere, a body part pains you so much that you’re frozen. Cannot move, dare not move, unable to move. Fear steps in as you’re on your own, not knowing what’s going to happen, who’s going to help. And you have no choice but to take baby steps to attend to the immediate pain. You catch your breath and go within yourself, otherwise your mind sends you on a roller coaster ride of anxiety, worry and uncertainty.
We often think that our self-care is perfect or on par with the way we live. But what if that standard is not enough and your body is asking for you to go to another depth? What if you are being called to go to a depth that asks you to be more vulnerable, fragile and sensitive? What if this pain means saying no, despite not wanting to let another down or putting yourself first despite what others may think of you?
What if this incident occurred just after your annual leave and you were about to return to work? Anxiety of having to return to a loveless system consumes you with thoughts of what others will think. Your head is saying: will they believe you? Will there be any support or understanding that this was a serious incident? You still have a few days of annual leave, maybe you’ll recover? At the same time your body is in agony, you’re having this internal dialogue adding to this anxiety.
The next day you end up in the emergency department with such excruciating pain that is way off the Richter scale and only Schedule 8 drugs (drugs administered for severe pain) will calm what the body is screaming at you.
A sigh of relief when a sick certificate is given, and a thought, ‘now they’ll believe me’, this piece of paper that says and proves it all, that this is a genuine incident.
Then there’s that flicker of hope that the weekend will somehow make things better – you’ll have this miraculous recovery. Yet your body has other plans…
The awkward phone call is made to the manager and you think you’re in your authority, when all you’re doing is being meek and hoping that you will be treated with respect and understanding.
When we have high expectations of others, disappointment is often around the corner. We have this picture of it needing to be a certain way and as humans, we can be the meanest too. It’s best to have no expectations, then disappointment can’t step in our already vulnerable, tender body.
What if the body was offering a huge painful healing? What if the body was saying this self-care is not enough? Is it now time to step to another platform? And this platform is self-love.
What is self-love? Because we think anything to do with the self, is selfish – right?
How far from the truth we can be...
Self-love is simply learning to say no to any abuse. Self-love offers but another standard and that is learning to say no. No to what no longer serves. It is that simple. No ifs, no buts, it is simply NO. And that choice is only given as our Soul loves us. It is we who don’t listen to these messages.
We learn that our old ways cannot re-enter our bodies. Because as soon as they try, bang, you are stopped with a pain or an ache or a limb unwilling to move. What do you do in these moments? Well, you have no choice but to listen and feel what the next calling is.
Do you need to continue to impress anyone or be accepted? No, not really. Is the pain worth the job? No, not really. It’s pointless taking a broken body into doing or being anything. So why abuse it anymore?
What if this period of recovery is asking us to consider every moment? The body is calling out to take care of it, as tenderly as we care for our newborns. The past choices of being in drive, doing, time and rushing are taken away from you and are no longer available. The body signals pain whenever you do. And in that you can only but smile and say thank you. What a beautiful offering from our Soul. A clearing of lifetimes of ill choices. Could we see it as simply as that?
We realise that every moment needs to be considered: how you take yourself to bed, the pillow you sleep with that turns as your body turns in the night, the type of painkillers you take for the pain, how you shower and clean the shower afterwards, to how you dress, etc. Every movement you make impacts your body.
You learn to let go of being here, there and everywhere. You learn to say no and be more vocal if things become too demanding at work. You learn to let go of unnecessary things that do not matter – time being the biggest factor, where we spend our entire lives running after and getting nowhere. Many are oblivious to how time rules our bodies but eventually the body says no more. Even when we are consumed with ill-health, we continue living in these unhealthy ways, unprepared to look at how we are moving in drive, rushing, frustration and busy momentums. We are the ones that choose these perpetual cycles, so it is up to us whether we choose to stop them or not.
It is only once we come to the realisation – that our ill-health is our responsibility – that self-care can become more refined and self-love can be our new marker, our new foundation. It’s like that star that burns so bright in the dark sky, you cannot ignore it. That depth of love you have for yourself changes, all because your body stopped you.
Now self-love becomes the next platform and you have no choice but to change the way you used to live to a way that supports your body even more. Now that’s self-love... another platform.