I know you’re going to ask me later if this post is written for and aimed at you directly. The truth is, unashamedly, yes it is. You need to read this, take it heart and pass the message (or the post) onto those around you that also need to hear this – you know who they are.
REMEMBER TO TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF.
That means taking care of your own needs, making sure you eat right, get plenty of water, get some sunlight, take a walk with the dogs, take time to wind down, rest and sleep. Yes all of it. Everyday.
I know that you want to tell me that you don’t have time for that right now, that you have too much other stuff going on, loved ones needs are greater than your own and I am telling you that is exactly why you need to drag yourself up from the bottom of your priority list.
During a safety briefing onboard aircraft they tell you to put your own oxygen mask on before helping other people – the reason is simple, you can’t help anyone else if you’ve passed out. This isn’t as dramatic and obvious as that. You probably don’t feel too bad at the moment, just a little tired but coping. If you’re not careful you will gradually use up your energy reserves until you grind to a halt.
Think about your mobile phone battery. If you pop it on charge regularly it can be back to 100% in 20 minutes or so. If you wait until the warning lights are flashing and it beeping at you to charge it, or you ignore all those distress signals and let it go completely flat it takes much longer, and it’s useless in the meantime.
You don’t have time for that right now.
It’s far from being selfish to take time for yourself when others need you, it’s essential. Taking good care of you is part of taking good care of them.
I know this is one of my favourite drums to bang on, but it’s because I know what it takes and I know what we are like and I know we drop our own needs first.
You can’t fill from an empty jug.
So right now, go and pop the kettle on and give yourself 15 minutes to do nothing but sit and drink your tea. Preferably with your face in the sunshine.