My days flow around what truly nourishes the soul: substantive meals, taking loving care of my physical and emotional space, and tending to my physical, emotional, and spiritual hygiene. Everything else fits around the self-care. Doing this cuts out the b.s. activities and sharpens my ability to discern. While connecting with others is essential, it’s not without connecting with myself first.
My days begin with a meditation practice, feeding and taking care of my dog Louie, and my cat Prema, and then writing. Then I move my body. I feed myself and my children. The kitchen gets cleaned. I have a couple of hours to teach or do creative aspects of my work before I make lunch, eat, then clean up. I have a few hours to do more creative work or take meetings before I make dinner, eat, then clean up. There is a walk. There are my kids to enjoy time with while they are home, some administrative, organizational, mail, and financial work to tend to, possibly an essential errand, laundry, cleaning, changing the sheets, or connecting with friends or family. Whatever is the most important for the next couple of hours; or it will wait for another day. I make sure my furry family members are set for the evening, and then it’s cleansing and mental clearing time for the evening.
My antenna for identifying work that others are trying to transfer onto me that is their own is extra high right now. While it can feel painful to act on healthy boundaries with those who are struggling with them, it helps to know that my decision will make the difference between feeling nourished and healthy and feeling depleted and defeated. I know that I can’t serve myself or others in a depleted, defeated state. Standing on the side of self-care is what keeps me healthy and able, productive and compassionate, patient and attentive. It’s what helps me grow into, rather than lose, my truest Self.