True Self-Care Is Not Instagram-able

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How often do we see photos of a super relaxed, bronzed woman meditating against the Caribbean sea, her wispy (most likely blonde) hair blowing in the wind with the hashtag “selfcaresunday”. 

Or a perfectly dressed person sipping a cappuccino at a white-walled cafe decorated with one tastefully macrame-d plant holder, looking off dreamily into the distance: #selfcaremoment.

True self-care moments look like this: you really want to snooze your morning alarm, but you know that will take away the 10 minutes you allotted to your morning meditation. So you sit down, not facing the Carribbean sea, but your slightly cluttered living room. You do your best to ignore the hairball you can see under the sofa, tempted as you are to just spend these 5 minutes sweeping the floor. You close your eyes and you meditate. 

True self-care is not cute. It is not always pretty. Not when you do it daily. Self-care is effort. It is commitment. We don’t always see rainbows and hear harp music before or after. Sometimes we remain cranky after our morning sit. 

But in coming back to our practice daily, even if it’s ugly and imperfect, we maintain the all-important connection to our selves. This connection, this overall grounding that we cultivate with a daily practice means that in those moments when we experience set back, or get triggered, we will come out of it with more ease and skill than if we don’t have a self-care practice, or a sporadic one that we turn to only in times of crisis.

Self-care takes work. Effort. Consistency.