TOP SIX WAYS TO FEEL BETTER ABOUT YOURSELF, #4 Take Care of Yourself
What I’m referring to when I suggest taking care of yourself is to learn how to nurture and soothe yourself. Our sensory systems are in a continual state of finding the right balance between alertness and calm. It’s a system that happens without our awareness – a bit like breathing. But if we can bring consciousness to it – again like breathing – we have choice about whether and how to help ourselves.
For the most part when I talk about our sensory system I’m referring to our five senses. There’s more to it than that and if you’d like to learn more I suggest coming to therapy.
But let’s take a look at the five senses and how they can help you take care of yourself – nurture and soothe yourself.
Sound: Do you like music? What about sounds? Like the sound of the ocean. For me, that sound can soothe me almost instantaneously.
Sight: Have you ever stared into a fire? There’s something very comforting about that. What about looking at a picture of your most cherished pet? When I look at a picture of my dog Cosmo, my body instantly relaxes!
Smell: I love the smell of lavender. How about you? What are the smells that bring you comfort and soothing?
Taste: Sucking is one of the first things we do as infants to self-soothe. No one teaches it to us. We just know how to do it. So, I’m always suggesting to my clients to drink water through a straw, suck on a mint or hard candy, or find some way to introduce more sucking into your life. Try it – it really works!
Feel: In addition to looking at pictures of my dog, I also love petting him (especially after a bath!). He feels so good and it’s very calming to pet him. Do you have a favorite blanket? Or smooth rock or stone?
Taking care of yourself can also look like getting a massage or pedicure, buying yourself flowers, or a favorite sweet treat, taking a bath, a walk, or a nap, or even talking sweetly to yourself.
What can you do today to start taking care of yourself?
If you’d like to learn more about how to take better care of yourself, call me.