“I feel good! Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah.
Whoa! I feel good, I knew that I would, now.”
C’mon sing it with me in your best James Brown impersonation. You know you want to… Why am I singing? Because I’m getting to really like this project. And I’ve honestly felt better (for a good long stretch) than I’ve felt in a time and I think this project is a big part of it.
This next sentence I can’t believe I’m going to write because I am a proud self-proclaimed introvert, but here it goes… it’s the social side of this project that’s made the biggest difference to me.
Why Social Self-Care Has a Big Impact
It’s made self-care more “normal” to me
I get that taking care of myself is important (in theory), but sometimes when I’m silent about something my head swims up with all kind of self-defeating behaviors and I fail to start even before I really begin. Have you been there before?
Talking with others, in person, helps normalize some of my struggles, fears, guilty pleasures, frustrations, etc. And I’m more likely to actually practice some decent self-care.
It’s put self-care more in the forefront of my thinking
I’ve read/watched/listened to so much on self-care, but there’s something powerful about hearing from people I know (or sort-of) know. I learned a lot from others and it helped me be more self-aware/upped my self-reflection game. Overall, it just gets me thinking about self-care more often.
It’s made self-care more fun, more meaningful, and more strategic
This one has been huge for me. So many times in the past I’ve treated self-care like a dreaded homework assignment that I procrastinated on – hoping it disappears. Eventually, like any homework, when I avoided it – the worse things got.
Talking to others made self-care more fun and more natural and helped me rethink (and “re-feel”) self-care. In the past I would put off those practices that didn’t feel good in the moment (prepping the night before or eating healthier) because I didn’t see how much it helped me be/feel healthier. On the other hand, practices that did feel good (alone time or a long bath) made me feel guilty because I didn’t have the balance of those other practices. Now I’m better able to practice all sorts of self-care because it’s more thoughtful and has a better reality check (to some degree).
It goes beyond the event
I‘m in the beginning stages of this thing and so I’ve only had a few actual meet-ups. But when I run into the people who have participated, they always ask “when are we meeting again?!” It’s a nice confirmation of what we’re doing is important or at least enjoyable to people, but it’s also a reminder to keep up my own self-care practices. And for the people who I see on a more frequent basis that have participated, during our everyday conversations we are more likely to casually discuss self-care in a natural way than we have in the past before the project.