Recently I found myself listening to The Naked Professors, a podcast about mental health and wellbeing that has crept its way to the top of my favourites list, hosted by Ben Bidwell and Matt Johnson.
It was the episode that former I’m a Celebrity champion Matt Willis was their special (and quite frankly fantastic) guest. Johnson made a statement that caused me to pause and reflect, due to the saddening realness of it.
“We live in a world where if we want to go for a massage, it’s expensive. So its a luxury, where in reality its a necessity”.
How heartbreakingly true is that?
Activities that feed the soul, which improve our state of mind and help us to get in touch with who we are, we tend to push to the side and leave for our daydreams. “Oh I would just love a massage but I don’t have the time”, “The gym? I wish, but my diary is too full!”
Yoga, a walk in the park, that art class you are yet to take, that spa day you keep rescheduling, or something as simple as a few minutes of mindfulness. These are all acts of self-love that just never make it to the top of our to-do list. But they absolutely should. There are are a number of reasons why, but to me, it all comes down to our purpose.
Without self-care, there is no self. And without the self, how are we to find purpose in our lives?
Today society demands a lot of us. Too much, in my opinion. We are constantly on the go, very rarely slowing down. From one errand to the next, autopilot is our default state of mind. How are we expected to really get to know ourselves if we never spend time with ourselves? How are we expected to live our best version if we never give it time to just breath, strip down, and reignite?
This will be different for everyone. For me, its yoga, writing, meditating, music and walking. Without these tools, I can confidently say that I would be a walking catastrophe (often I am, but I now know how to realign myself with myself).
So I challenge you. Take charge. Take that yoga class, even if it means you might have to forgo cooking dinner for a night (treat yourself to a takeout!). Take that weekend away by the coast instead of your usual booze-ups at the pub. Instead of hitting the snooze button in the morning, use that time to practice a few minutes of meditation.
At least once a week make a promise to yourself to do something you want to do. Switch off autopilot and re-introduce yourself to yourself.
Self-care is NOT a luxury, it is an absolute necessity. Taking time to yourself is vital for your happiness, productivity and growth as a human being. Prioritize it. You will be so grateful that you did.
Check out The Naked Professors podcast on all podcast streaming services.