In February, I am focusing on self-care and wellness, self-love, and self-acceptance. In the first blog post, we talked about body positivity and my personal journey of accepting my body and myself. Today I want to talk about the pressure of having a certain wellness routine and that sometimes the best form of self-care is no self-care at all.
I feel like nowadays with different movements within the personal development and self-help communities we are being pressured into self-care and wellness in a particular form. I don’t think this is right simply because there are so many people who have different lives. And if something works for one person it doesn’t mean it will work for someone else. Yes, certain things have more support or a bigger following than others. But still, it does not minimize the fact that one universal solution doesn’t exist. It comes to self-care as well.
What is self-care?
If you are asking yourself what exactly is self-care, this is my definition of it – it is an act of taking care of yourself, your body, mind, and health. It can be expressed in any shape or form, really. However, wellness is not a bunch of images on Pinterest with aesthetically-pleasing things and it doesn’t include drinking water, doing face masks, or exercising only.
My form of self-care is journaling, taking care of my face, body, and hair, being outside in nature, and spending time in solitude.
Someone else’s practice can be visiting the doctors for the health check-ups, drinking a good glass of wine, or doing nothing. Yes, you heard it right. Staying all day in your bed, watching Netflix, and eating ice cream, or just doing nothing is also a form of self-care.
Many forms of self-care
Honestly, you just need to understand what helps you, what makes you feel refreshed and like a brand new person. You don’t have to choose one way or another in order to fit into the norms that society or social media create. For a fact, you can switch between different forms of self-care or do nothing at all.
If you need some advice in determining if your wellness routine fits you, ask yourself the following questions:
- How do I feel after my self-care routine? Energized, peaceful, or tired?
- Do I do it for myself or because it’s trendy? Or someone I follow does it?
- Do I feel fulfilled and motivated afterward?
- Do I really want or like it?
- Do I have to do it?
I think the most important thing, as I said before, is to recognize what truly makes you feel relaxed, happy, and energized (in a healthy way) and go in this direction. Listen to your intuition and avoid anything that does not align with your vision or values.
We already live in such a chaotic world with endless to-do lists, a lot of new information, pieces of advice that we don’t even ask for. I think the least we can do for ourselves is to choose a self-care routine that will benefit our mind, health, happiness, and nervous system.
For me personally, my self-care and mental health are sacred. And while I am extremely open to new tips and trying new techniques, I want to make sure that these parts of my life are not influenced by any social media trends like That Girl, and personal development or self-help movements.
Don’t get me wrong, I love That Girl trend in moderation and personal development is an important part of my life, but we should be able to filter this information and make the final decision that is the best for us, our health, and our needs.
Productive self-care vs doing nothing
I know these are two extremes, probably. But as someone who has a quite productive self-care routine and also loves doing nothing to relax and regain energy, I have to say that sometimes simply doing nothing helps way more.
Of course, after meditating, journaling, face and hair masks, a good smoothie, I feel way more fulfilled and happier about myself. But sometimes, I also feel drained and exhausted, especially if something from my wellness list wasn’t done.
But the whole point of self-care is to allow yourself to relax and to feel better afterward. So what’s the point of a huge self-care to-do list if even by looking at it you feel extremely tired and like you don’t want to do anything? Isn’t it better to just sit on the couch for a day and chill instead of running around drinking water, saying affirmations in the mirror, doing scrabs, etc.?
Why doing nothing is the best alternative?
Ok, this is my personal opinion and when I say doing nothing, of course, I don’t mean that you will just freeze for a day. Obviously, you will still do some things like eating, washing your face (hopefully), drinking water (again, hopefully). Doing nothing, in this case, means minimizing the number of actions you will take during the day in order for your body and mind to feel better. This is my personal definition, of course.
So why is doing nothing can be the best alternative for your wellness?
- You will be able to destress
- No pressure from the outside world or yourself
- You define your own self-care routine and there is power in this
- Your body and most importantly mind will be able to relax
- No stress if you haven’t finished something
- If you never had a self-care routine, you don’t have to follow any rules. You just do whatever you want to
- By doing nothing, you create new space and environment for the new ideas. But again, no pressure
- A new experience and perspective on life
This is important. If you decided to do nothing, P L E A S E, don’t feel guilty about it. I am sure you deserve to relax and just enjoy your free time.
And if someone asks you “what did you do this weekend?”, there is no shame in saying “absolutely nothing“.
It’s your decision
Ultimately, it is up to you to choose what works best for you. But my advice is to be flexible. If your routine doesn’t feel right anymore or drains your energy, simply switch to either something else or allow yourself a day or two of nothingness. And who cares what anyone on Instagram or Pinterest will think about it? It’s not about them but you. And you still can be That Girl (or Boy) even if you stay still and do nothing for a day.