I have been focused on Self-care for a very long time and I equate it with Self-Love.
So what is Self-Care actually?
For many people, self-care is but a small blip on their radar.
Even many spiritual teachers and leaders focus on how to give to others, how to be out in the world.
But you know that instruction you get by the airline flight attendant, "Put your oxygen mask on first, then help those next to you."
Somehow this gets lost?
I don't particularly want to go into the many reasons why for now, and there are many; I would rather put attention on how to cultivate an inner climate of self-love and self-care.
Survival, we are designed to survive. So whatever you learned about how to best survive with the leastenergy expenditure, that is what you did. When we take this path over and over, perhaps not being provided alternatives; we are conditioning our body systems and this becomes the way of life.
Our thoughts, feelings, perceptions and habits develop roots and this becomes our way of being.
It is important to understand what happens in the autonomitc nervous system and how we learn to deal with stress or rather distress. I really appreciate Deepak Chopra's definition of the stress response.
Stages of Stress, 1. the stressful event; 2. your inner appraisal of it; 3. your bodies reaction to it,
taken from Ageless Body, Timeless Mind.
We can see here that phase two is where we can take the opportunity to intervene. This requires our
ability to slow down, pause, to provide us some time and space. This is why there so much emphasis
on being in the moment, Being in the Now.
Today the air is filled with smoke. I let my cats out for awhile then call them in, Honey seems content to stay out for just a few minutes, while Shrimp will stay outside as long as I allow her to. Last Friday night was the thunder and lightening, it wasn't until Wednesday morning that the ash made it onto the property here; looking like a blanket of grey pollen dusting the cars and falling down right in front of my eyes.
What to say? Peoples homes being burnt down, all the wildlife lost, a tragedy. This trauma might seem unbearable. What to do?
Wherever you find yourself at this time on this planet, please tune into your heart center and take some slow deep breaths.
If you are someone who has been impacted by the fires, my heart goes out to you.
If you are feeling panicked by this recent event but not harmed by it, then allow yourself to feel safe.
I don't know why tragedy strikes one person and not another. It sometimes seems random and certainly not fair. I am in no way attempting to trivialize anyones experience; I have had my share of tragic and painful events. If we are still here and able to breathe, we can be grateful. Settling in our bodies, calming our minds is the first step.