I know I struggle most with self care when I'm busy, stressed or feeling low, which of course it when I need it most. I don't by any means live the busiest of lives, but with my job, I can't rely on being able to do the same things at the same time every day, week etc. and creating and sticking to a routine is hard.
Tumblr, Pinterest and the blogging world is full of self care ideas and as much as I want to embrace them, the majority of them just don't feel relatable to me. I understand different techinques work for different people, but there's a lot of them I can't takr seriously or imagine how it could be applied to my life. If I'm feeling so low that I find it a huge challenge, both physically and mentally, to even drag myself out of bed, I'm skeptical of how just much taking a bubble bath or doing a spot of adult colouring is really going to help.
Perhaps there's some element of confidence in it, not feeling like I'm worthy of spending time solely on myself and my emotional well-being. As a fully fledged adult, I can now look back at those turbulent teenage years that we'd all rather forget and praise the Lord that my self-esteem is at an all time high compared to some periods in the past. Generally, I'm quite confident, in my appearance, my character and my views. I don't often feel inadequite or like I need to justify my choices. So why do I feel like I don't deserve to set time aside to do something mindless like colouring in and why do I view it as wasted time?
Another possible reason is that I'm a very 'closed book', for lack of better terminology.
I don't talk to my friends or family about my feelings very much (not without the influence of a lot of alcohol anyway) and I tend to shut myself off. One of my friends has even nicknamed me 'caramel' cause he says I'm hard on the outside but soft and sweet on the inside. I have a massive complex about never wanting to appearing needy or vulnerable or not in control and although this was funny the first time around, it makes me feel a little sad that even my friends have running jokes about how shut off I am. I guess then maybe by openly engaging in self care, I almost feel like I'm shouting out to the word that I'm not feeling how I want to and that vulnerability scares me.
Because it feels more comfortable for me to just be alone when I'm feeling down, I tend to opt for lesser recommended techniques - eating junk food and watching a film or TV series or lying in bed in the middle of the day staring blankly into space and thinking of every worst possible scenario for all the woes in my life. Compared to some of the self care techniques I've read, this isn't anything particularly inspiring or original but it feels the most natural for me. Afterwards or during it though, I'm always hit with a huge surge of self-loathing and the realisation that this isn't healthy and that maybe, just maybe, one of those self care techniques that initially made me cringe would've been more productive. It seems like I constantly fool myself into thinking these self destructive things is actually self care.
I love the concept of self care and have learned the hard way that ignoring your natural instincts to take care of your emotional well-being and mental health will inevitably end badly, but I can't help but feel a little detached from the concept of self care. I'm currently trying to find techniques that I can incorporate into my life and that will leave me feeling recharged and rejuvenated rather than even lowing that when I started, so anything you can suggest, blog posts, videos or ideas that have helped you, please share.