It’s okay if your self-care routine looks different right now, or is requiring more effort.
A friend and I talked about this recently and I realized how true this is. Is that walk you used to take that made everything a lot better, just not cutting it anymore? Does taking that walk feel more like a chore than a release?
You are not alone. The important thing to realize is that self-care routines change. What works today, may not work in 5 years for you anymore. Self-care routines change even more in times of a pandemic. During this challenging time, it can be incredibly difficult to even find the desire to practice self-care and it can be frustrating to find that your regular routine isn’t working. Be patient with yourself. I had to realize for myself that exercise just wasn’t enough for me anymore. I am realizing that self-care in this chapter of my life with the pandemic, with my mom’s pancreatic cancer journey, with my own feelings of trauma and grief, with my own struggles of self-confidence, that it’s more than okay to be gentle with myself and that it’s not a sign of failing if I need more than I usually do to help me to feel better.
So for me, that has meant taking more breaks in the day, doing multiple small workouts throughout the day, going for a run when the sun is out, even if it is cold, and doing lots of meditating and yoga every day. It hasn’t been easy to make the time for more self-care, but it has been critically necessary.
Rather than getting frustrated with yourself that your self-care jam feels like a chore or isn’t working, ask yourself what else you need. Give yourself grace, knowing that you are going through a lot, even if some days feel manageable, this is a prolonged trauma that many of us have never experienced. It’s okay to change your self-care routine or add more self-care to an existing routine. You are not a failure, you are human, you are working through, and that’s admirable.
Rather than get angry with yourself, feel empowered that you can make the decision to change your routine and set a new path for healing. We are constantly growing and changing, let your self-care grow and change with you.
You’ve got this. I believe in you.