Treating yourself, bailing on your friends, having a bottle of wine in the bubble bath. These and many other “self-care” hacks might feel good in the moment, but I would challenge you to think about if they are actually bringing on the “care” in “self-care”. This blog was inspired by a rant on The Financial Diet. Check it out.
These things aren’t wrong from time to time, and I certainly won’t poo-poo anyone for taking time in because they’re out of spoons, or just want a night to themselves. What’s important to reflect on as you make the decisions is how they serve your Highest Good or True Self. Sometimes the hard stuff you do right now is exactly what caring for yourself looks like.
When we live in the liminal, with one foot balanced in the physical realm, one in the spiritual, and connect with both easily, self-care is an important part of maintaining a healthy and balanced lifestyle. For me, it’s important to do things that care for the self physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
I hope that my listicle for today offers you some inspiration on ways to truly engage in self-care for the whole Witch. As with all lists, take what works for you and leave the rest:
- When you’re thinking of treating yourself with something you know isn’t good for you (gluten-y things are my weakness), consider if it’s actually caring for your body to eat it. Get the option that’s better for your body type and health.
- Put the credit cards away. Commit to no impulse spending and no spending with money that isn’t yours. Get deep into the energy of Taurus and Jupiter, and build your financial self up in a way that’s simple and easy to do. I never thought I would go credit card-free and I’m now 3 months into not using my credit card at all. Financial health, while sorting banking info and my money, isn’t fun, but it is incredibly good for my mental health.
- Take time for check-ins with your emotional health over an unhealthy coping mechanism (see #1 and #2). You can do this with journaling or a mental exercise. I find this really helpful halfway through my work day, as it gets me to re-center myself. Questions to ask yourself could include:
- Where in my body am I holding stress?
- Can I focus there and breathe through it? (intentions such as, “I release all tension that doesn’t serve my well being”)
- What emotional sorrow do I feel right now?
- What emotional joy do I feel right now?
- What do I love or like about myself right now?
- As you end, thank yourself for the check-in.
- Connect to your spirit guides, through meditation or journeying to work with them, on your spiritual well-being. We cannot grow spiritually without our spirit guides/deities/ancestors, just as we cannot as humans grow up well in a vacuum. Once you discover them, work with them regularly as part of your spiritual health check-in.
- Shadow Healing. One of the most important parts of well-being that touches all parts of our lives is to do the work of shadow healing. I would argue it’s also one of the hardest things to do as it often sneaks up on us again, dragging us into un-wellness. For more on healing and integrating the Shadow self, I highly recommend The Shamanic Temple of Witchcraft by Christopher Penczak as a workbook.
- “Taking it in its deepest sense, the shadow is the invisible saurian tail that man still drags behind him. Carefully amputated, it becomes the healing serpent of the mysteries. Only monkeys parade with it.” (Jung, The Integration of the Personality. 1939)
- Physical Health check-ins. Speaking of healing the shadow and working on mental and emotional health, we need to think about the self-care we offer our physical bodies, too. Are you up-to-date on your health care? Do you have ailments that aren’t being addressed? Advocating for your own physical health is good self-care.
Commit to time each day that is for your self-care. Some people take 10 minutes at waking and at the end of the day, others participate in a full hour of self-devoted time with the kinds of activities I mention above. However you can fit this time in is valuable, and needs to be honoured. My self-care time is often 10-minute check-ins throughout the day: at waking, noon break, end of day walk to the car, and evening before bed. However you can fit the time in for you can work. The important part is committing to yourself. Because real self-care requires that commitment.
May you all be blessed on your self-care journeys, wherever they take you!
Follow Lisa Jade @modernwitchcraftmusings on Instagram and Facebook.