The Origins Of The Self-Care Revolution:
Original definition (Created by doctors): described a disabled, elderly, or mentally ill individual’s ability to remain autonomous (e.g. dressing themselves, driving, etc.) and manage their own health. Redefinition of wellness in the 60s to be less about acquiring means of survival and more about moving towards well-being. Self-care becomes core component of “helping professions” in an effort to reduce burnout, compassion fatigue, vicarious trauma, etc.
With the rise of the women’s movement and civil rights movement – self-care became a political act. Activists saw that poverty was correlated with poor health, and they argued that in order to dismantle hierarchies based upon race, gender, class, and sexual orientation, those groups must be able to live healthy lives. “Women and people of color have viewed controlling their health as a corrective to the failures of a white, patriarchal system.”
Political turmoil and a general emergence of mental healthcare coming into the mainstream brings self-care into the picture more.
Adapted From The Article:
“Caring for myself is not self-indulgence. It is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare” – Audre Lorde. The context of her quote was her need to know the difference between “overextending myself and stretching myself.”
Real Self Care Vs. Fake Self Care:
Wellness Industrial Complex:
The wellness industrial complex today is a $10 billion industry. Businesses are capitalizing on the public’s want/need to feel better, making it more commercialized an inaccessible for most.
Their marketing practices contribute to a very clear image of what self-care isn’t. This means other, more effective options are overlooked. Conventional examples of self-care don’t work for everyone, but they’re marketed in a way that suggests they are.
Before today, you might have only heard that self-care is good and something you should do. You might have tried some of the things marketed to you or what your friends/Instagram feed is using. You might have found yourself sitting in a bath with a facemask and frustrated because it’s still not making you any less stressed or anxious or sad. You then may have decided there must be something wrong with you. But there isn’t.
Ironically, though self-care was partially born out of underserved communities not receiving the care they need, what has been defined and monetized to be self-care in modern society is now too expensive for most of us. The thing that was created for marginalized folks has now been deemed too inaccessible.
Also, in the narrative associated with self-care, it’s not always shown as purposeful or intentional. If there isn’t a purpose, it’s harder to justify. If there isn’t a clear purpose that resonates with the individual, it’s unlikely to stick.
Some Self-Care Ideas:
Self-care is an intentional activity on our calendar and not something that happens to us with our conscious effort. It take commitment from our end to take care of ourselves, so we are ready to serve and contribute to others in a positive way.
Drink water and eat food that fuels your body
Turn off your phone when you go to bed
Spend time with people you love
Get outside every day
Pet a dog or cat
Speak to yourself kindly
Tell someone you love them
Organize some part of your home
Practice forgiveness for yourself and others
Cry or laugh
Move your body
Log off social media for the day, the week, the year, or forever
Unfollow people on social media
Stay away from negative content
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About The Article Author:
I see myself as an advocate for bringing social, emotional and character development to families, schools and communities. I never want to let this idea out of my sight – Our children are not just GPAs. I’m a Writer and a Certified Master Coach in NLP and CBT. Until 2017, I was also a Big Data Scientist. In December of 2044, I hope to win the Nobel. Namasté.
Write to me or call me. Tell me what support from me looks like.
Program Director & Essential Life Skills Coach for Kids and Busy Parents
COMMIT To Your Goals, Achieve Anything And Become Unstoppable
COMMITMENT - A Pillar of FutureSTRONG Academy
Our children will one day face the real world without our support. Academic development is not the only skill they will need in the real world where people skills like taking the lead, emotional intelligence and a strong moral compass will determine who will shine. So, as parents who want to raise well rounded adults, we want to give them the right tools for their personal development.
Here is COMMITMENT as described as the 6 C’s of Future STRONG.
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