What Is Self-Care?
Should I really be spending hundreds of dollars on my "self-care?"
Everyone says it, “Oh, I’ll have a “treat yo’self day” or “I’m going to practice self-care and buy myself this…” That is always our justification to spend large amounts of money at Target or Lush. I literally walked out of Lush with three bath bombs and minus 50 dollars in my bank account... smh. These stores are literally making millions for overcharging “self-love items,” while the rest of us go broke!
I know for a fact that in the past, I have spent too much money on bath supplies and face masks and questioned why I still felt like shit. There are so many of us that don’t take a deep hard look at themselves and their toxic traits and instead cover it up with a face mask. Self-care is more than just face masks and bath bombs. Self-care is walking out of a toxic relationship. Self-care is respecting that you need sleep and boundaries in order to be healthy. Self-care is eating well and exercising because you love your body, not because you want to change it. Self-care is not spending an insane amount of money and then later on stressing about your finances.
“Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we’ll ever do.”
– Brené Brown
Self-care is knowing ways to “fill your bucket up” instead of emptying it. A big thing for me is boundaries. I never put boundaries up, I really struggle with this, but I’m getting better.
I’d let boys treat me mean, girlfriends say some pretty foul words to me, or supervisors raise their voice towards me, and unfortunately, I would allow it. My bucket was completely empty. I had all these toxic people in my life, but no strength or self-awareness to get rid of them. Self-awareness is one of the most important parts of your healing process. Without actually being aware of what is causing you emotional stress and pain, there is no healing and removing it. Without being aware of your own toxic behaviors, there is no room for growth and healthy, replacement behaviors.
Therapy has helped me learn why I continued these relationships. It brought me more awareness and made me feel so uncomfortable that I was forced to start changing. The honest truth is I never truly loved myself enough to leave these toxic relationships. With a great support system and lots of therapy, I was able to start distancing myself from them (literally because some of them I moved away from recently). It’s interesting because all of a sudden, most of these people naturally left from my life. Maybe I was raising my vibrations and unable to relate to these individuals anymore, or maybe we just drifted apart. Whatever the reason, I was able to detach emotionally to *most* of these people. I said I still struggle with this. There are still some certain people that I don’t talk to anymore, but if they do contact me, it’s hard not to drop everything and give them my attention and love, because I still do love and respect these individuals. But again, I’m a work in progress.
However, once I started going more with the flow rather than fix each area of my life, I started to see who was supposed to stay in my life and who was supposed to go. As heartbreaking as it may be, I had to let go, in order to love myself.
Self-care is not throwing a face mask on Tuesday night, and then fear the wrath of your boss Wednesday morning. It is a conscious daily decision to respect yourself to stand up for yourself, remove yourself from toxic situations, and spend time alone reflecting on your own behavior, no matter how difficult it may be.