The Healthy Practice of Self-Care
By Julie Alvira, MD, MBA
“I’m taking some ME time.” Sound familiar? It’s not a new trend but it’s definitely here to stay. You’ve probably heard friends, co-workers, relatives, or just two gals sipping lattes at the table next to you and one of them say that comment. What are they referring to?
Personal or ME time is one of many examples of self-care or caring enough for yourself as a person to give yourself what you need. Sometimes self-care can be agreeing to not do anything that doesn’t make you to feel better. If you’ve been like a “roadrunner” between work and personal life, news alert! You may be on your way to burnout. Finding a work/life balance, taking breaks, setting boundaries, stress management, healthy eating, connecting to people, meditation, mindfulness practices, yoga and physical fitness, ways to have a healthy relationship with yourself, ways to boost mood and confidence, adequate sleep schedule, proper hygiene, your mental health, simplifying your life, having downtime, etc. These are part of the balance in life. Treat yourself with kindness.
To cultivate and maintain your physical and mental wellness is the magic idea and importance of caring for you as a person. Taking care of you is not a replacement to anything but a necessity and an essential part of decompressing. The connection to your true self, mind, emotions, relationships, and the environment is what’s going to make the balance possible. To have this connection helps us handle the four compartments of our emotional intelligence: self-awareness, social awareness, self-management, and relationship management.
The corporate world
Forgetting about our well being in addition to workplace pressures can lead to entrapment and a bundle of symptoms that starts a ticking bomb. A person might use unhealthy antidotes to compensate. It can explode with overeating, smoking, sleep disorders, anxiety, depression, substance use, a complete breakdown, and the consequences of those. Companies are becoming more aware of this and the importance of self care of employees because they are the most importance assets of an organization. To incorporate wellness and mental health initiatives and explore ideas on how to spread a wellness-minded work culture is a step forward.
Some companies have adopted the following:
- mindfulness practices to boost cognition
- physical exercise
- healthy networking to cultivate relationships
- adding healthy habits
- eating appropriate food to increase energy and performance
- connect with nature
- decreasing unhealthy habits such as smoking
- recognize employees’ accomplishments
- walking meetings
- adding ergonomics
“The key to growth is the introduction of higher dimensions of consciousness into our awareness.”
When employees are more centered and balanced, they can be high performers. Research has shown a big increase of chronic work-related stress. When we start understanding how stress can affect our lives then we can take action and the result can be seen at work, family life, and individual health. The “becoming aware” of our thinking, feelings, emotions, and behaviors can help us get grounded. It’s not ONE area; it’s a group of areas to achieve a good quality life.
Julie Alvira, MD, MBA. www.coachdrjulie.com. Dr. Julie is a Certified Life Coach for men and women but has a passion for Women Recovery from Addictions. Creator of Your Recovery Gal program for women. Nationally Certified Addictions Professional. firstname.lastname@example.org. Bilingual virtual or in office session.