Apparently all of my posts this month have been on the theme of self-care.
I had realized that was (deliberately) the case for my daily posts for the ‘Making Space 2022’ series but it was only when I started this post that I realized that my regular Tuesday posts had been all about self-care, too.
In retrospect, it’s ridiculously obvious but until I started writing this post, I thought that my regular Tuesday posts were all over the place this month. In fact, I started by calling this post ‘Bits and Pieces’ and I was going to write about how I felt like I was too focused on small issues lately and not getting into any big picture stuff. Brains are so weird, aren’t they?
I started the month by talking about the challenges of resting, then I was thinking about how I wanted to focus on some low-key core work to give myself some structure (literally and metaphorically), and then I was dealing with back pain.
Then today, I woke up with a lot of pain and tension in my hands and I thought I would write about that…after I did some stretches. (This video helped a lot, by the way.)
So, I was thinking of all of those things as separate – resting, core work, back pain, and wrist/hand stretches – but they are all connected. For starters, they are all happening to me – so that’s one connection. They all have to do with me trying to manage the details of my life in a way that supports me instead of making me work harder. And they are all about underlying, foundational things that would be helpful for me to take a closer look at.
I take plenty of downtime on a regular basis but I could probably put some structures in place to make it easier for me to get more complete rest – mentally and physically. If I established a higher level of basic core fitness, it would support my efforts in other areas. If I strengthened my back and paid closer attention to *how* I move, I could avoid some types of back pain. And if I did more hand and wrist stretches on a regular basis, I would probably have more flexibility and less stiffness overall.
Sidenote re: my wrists and hands – I didn’t injure myself or anything. I am pretty sure my wrist/hand/forearm stiffness today was related to spending the last few days rolling cookies, wrapping gifts, and carrying packages – basically using my hands in unusual ways and employing different muscles.
I think I am pretty good at mental self-care and decent at physical self-care but there is definitely room for improvement in both areas. I would like to move myself toward more proactive and preventative care, especially physically.
Most of the time, I can organize things to take good care of my emotional health and my mental well-being but I have such a hard time assessing my physical capacity that it is hard for me to judge what to do now to make things easier on myself in the future.
In fact, just like I was doing with my December posts – I keep seeing my days and my activities and my actions as separate things when they are all very much connected and they all depend on me taking good care of myself moment to moment and overall.
Sooooo, what am I going to do about all of these realizations?
Well, I don’t want to let my brain away with sorting everything into separate boxes any more because that is not helping very much.
I guess, I need to ask myself questions like these and figure out my next steps:
What kinds of things help me feel better/help me to take good care of myself?
How do I integrate those physical/emotional/mental self-care practices so I can be proactive about my current and future health?
What habits and systems do I need to develop to make those practices a straightforward part of my daily rhythm?
What help/advice/support do I need to make that happen?
And, most importantly for this ADHD brain – how do I work on this without trying to do it all at once and getting overwhelmed?
I don’t have answers for these questions right now but I will be returning to these themes throughout my regular posts and in my ‘Go Team’ posts in January.
How do you do with your self-care?
Do you tend to see things in ‘bits and pieces’ like I do or do you remember that it is the same you doing all of the things?
PS – As an update on the core work – I followed the video every day until my back started acting up. After that, I still did some core work but I found that that specific video irritated my back so I did other back-friendly exercises daily and tried to ‘engage’ my core when doing other routine tasks as well.