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Are You Busy Taking Care of Everyone Else?

4 February 2015

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 February 4, 2015
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Are you a caregiver extraordinaire?  Your children are well fed and groomed?  Your boss is pleased with your work because you bend over backwards to please him/her?  Do you do the shopping and meal preparing and cleanup and laundry?  Is your spouse or partner supported by you in every way?

 

Do you call your friends in need, to make sure they are ok?  Do you bring them food when they are sick?  Do you listen to their problems and get pulled into their drama because you believe that’s what “being a good friend” is about?

 

Is the one activity you truly love,  your writing, in last place for your attention?  And even more importantly, are YOU in last place on your own “to do” list?

 

It’s cliché, but those pesky flight attendants are right.  You can’t be a good parent, partner, employee, or writer if you don’t put on your own oxygen mask first.

 

Full disclosure, this is one of the things I struggle with most.  As a teacher, my instinct is to nurture others and to help usher my students’ and clients’ creative projects into fruition, which I love.  But sometimes I forget to take care of myself.

 

So, in the next month, I am committing to the following.

  1. I am going to get enough sleep, eat healthy fresh food (sorry, giant box of See’s candy sitting on my counter), and exercise.
  2. I am going to prioritize my writing time. (early, with coffee)
  3. I am going to listen to my heart and not all the “shoulds” in my head.
  4. I am going to read.  Books that challenge me, but also the mysteries, horror and trashy biographies that I love!
  5. I am going to wake up every morning and say to myself, “Just for today, I don’t have to be perfect.”
  6. I am going to say ‘no’ to things I don’t want to do. (family, you are about to be ’empowered’ to do laundry)
  7. I am going to ignore the voice in my head that tells me I’m not doing enough, or the right things, or that it’s all pointless.
  8. I am going to be grateful for all the wonderful people in my life.
  9. I am going to try to be present and take in the gorgeous mountains, oak trees, and hummingbirds all around me.
  10. And finally, I am going to put myself first, knowing that if I do, I’ll be a better friend, wife, mom and writer.

 

Take action!  Join me in the above acts of self care.  Are you making time for the things you love?  Are you nurturing your mind?  Are you paying attention to the fact that you are a living person, on a spinning planet, in a body that needs love and protection?  Tell me your stories below…

 

Breathe.  Relax.  Take care of yourself.

 

Watch the words flow….

 

xo Pat

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