Self-Care is no mystery

 I’ve been focused on taking better care of myself these past couple of months, thanks to tangible evidence from my doctor that my sedentary lifestyle was putting me at risk for some serious health issues. My test results made me become more conscious of the need to take care of me. Now, I’m eating less and I’m making the time to exercise. I asked my fellow Missdemeanors, We spend lots of time writing, marketing, networking, going to conferences and book signings, taking care of family, working day jobs for some of us… How do you take care of yourself? Or do you? SusanI try to walk in the woods every day, and for the most part I succeed, unless it’s really icy. Though I have actually crawled up the slope leading into the woods on occasion.  I usually follow the same route, and there’s always something to see. My mind frees up and I invariably come up with ideas, but I’m not even trying. I always feel restored afterwards. RobinNo matter where I am, at home or traveling, I wake up an hour earlier than I have to in order to have a couple of cups of coffee in bed. It’s something my dad used to do when I was growing up. I didn’t understand why he did it until I started doing it, too. It’s a small luxury that’s easy to pull off. Once I get up, I typically operate at full-throttle so it’s nice to ease into the day. It’s like a morning meditation with a side of wake-up juice.
CateAgree about the Zen coffee thing.  AlisonAlexia, I love that you’re focusing us on self-care. I meditate every morning and manage to do some yoga most evenings. Both which have had major impact on my ability to be a calmer and more compassionate person. One other activity that I once saw as wickedly indulgent, but now realize is critical to taking care of myself, is going to sleep when I’m tired. My brain works better, by body feels better, and my mood is happier when I’m well rested. MicheleOne of the things I’ve learned is to honor my biological inner clock. I get up and rise and shine early in the morning when I am bursting with energy. I also go to bed early because I need to refuel. As simple as it sounds, it is the single best thing I do for me. I don’t eat junk food as a rule, which not to say I don’t indulge in good food. I also have a list of things I know help to de-stress me. Being near the ocean always works for me, but so can pulling weeks, cooking something that requires me to chop and smell the ingredients, and flipping through magazines with beautiful photos. I love yoga and solitary walks. And this is when I remember how much I miss my dog because a walk with her or just the feel of her coat as I patted her made me feel even better than she did.That should be pulling “weeds” not “weeks.” It simply proves my point that I am increasingly incompetent as the day goes on. It must be close to my bedtime. TraceePaying attention to ourselves, that seems to be the common theme. Whether it’s walking the dogs (which is an important part of my day) or getting up early when the mind is active or going to bed ‘on time’ let’s keep taking care of ourselves. That’s how we also make sure we can take care of the other important people in our lives. RobinAmen sister! PaulaFor me it’s all about building in time to rest and relax, and when I don’t have time for that, at least recognizing when I’m dangerously exhausted, and need to stop and chill out.A regular yoga practice helps. I do yoga at home, and I do it on the road in hotel rooms. I also go to a yoga studio for classes.If I’m not on the road, I give myself Sundays as a real day off. Which means that I only have to do what I want to do. That could mean binge watching HBO, or making a pot of chili, or reading something just for fun.Sometimes I want to work and so I do. But only if I feel like it. How do you take care of you? Share your ideas here or join the discussion on Facebook.

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