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What Taking A Break Can Teach You About Self Care

Even when you are quite mindful with your self-care, you can still get in a self-care rut. You can still max out your systems. You can still lose sight of some negative patterns you’ve been forming.

That’s why incorporating what I call “big picture” self-care things, like travel, dance lessons, turning off your phone for long periods of time, basically things that are separate, but complimentary of your everyday self-care practice, are so important.

Recently I had the opportunity to travel with friends and relax at home with the mister. My two weeks of big picture activities solidified my theory of their importance, and it made space for some very nice revelations. Today, I shall share three of them with you.

Step away. Like all of the way away.

There’s something really powerful about getting completely away from your everyday life. About breaking your cycles.

Lifecoach Tony Robbins does this with his clients by using harsh language and tough love. It shocks the brain and their emotions so much that it can allow them to look at their issues differently.

I personally don’t take that approach, but I agree with the principle. We gotta do something to get away and lovingly shake up our routines so we can reflect back with new eyes.

Now, it doesn’t have to be going out of the country; it can be going out of your city or neighborhood or even a staycation. But breaks are SO needed to get us a bit uncomfortable and help us see how our everyday life is going.

Honestly, I was a bit surprised by some things I noticed about my everyday life. How tense I had become. How worried I was about getting the new studio up to snuff. How I was ignoring some things in my life that I care deeply about.

But I’m so grateful I stepped away and noticed those things. And it’s been fun to come back and create a new set of priorities and how I want to go about things.

Hit the refresh button on self-care.

Let me start by saying that I really value sticking to self-care rituals while traveling. They may be a modified version, but they are still there.

On my travels, I brought my journal, stones, mala, and a few other items so I could stick to my practice. And who would have thought that the self-care nudge I got was to throw it all out of the window?!

Ok, not literally, but it turns out that what I needed most was to go with the flow. That exploring Italy in and of itself was my self-care practice. That my time there wasn’t meant for a structured practice of any kind.

So I went with the flow! I woke up and had a nice breakfast. Explored the local sights. Relaxed. Had fun. Stayed as disconnected as possible. Got a massage. Ate more delicious food. Stayed present and soaked it all in. It really felt like hitting the refresh button on my self-care practice, and life, actually.

It’s easy to attach judgments and ideas to what we think self-care has to look like, but I invite you to hit the refresh button sometimes. Do something completely different. Follow and trust your nudges when you tune in, even if it doesn’t look like what you think it should.

Have fun! It’s a deep and serious practice.

I got to travel with a beautiful soul who brings so much light to anywhere she is. She’s a family friend who is studying acting and is not afraid to sing and dance and make up characters with me in public. In fact, it’s almost a requirement with her.

When people ask me what my favorite part of the trip was, it was honestly being able to act silly with her for a whole week.

Life gets so serious. Adulting is hard. And even if we are generally “having fun” with life, how much fun are we really having? And how many situations are we actually giving ourselves permission to be silly and bring some pure joy to it.

Having so much fun affected me on a deep level. Letting my old theater geek freak flag fly what just what the self-care doctor ordered. It brought out my inner child and awakened a vital part of me that had gone dormant.

Immediately following my trip, my husband and I spent the weekend at Unglued Summer Camp, which is a craft summer camp for grown-ups. I’ll write more about that later, but again, dorky freak flags flying high as a group of grown-ups made crafts, told stories, played lawn games, and danced the night away.

And again, it was so needed. Having fun is so, so important. Just as important at meditation, getting bodywork, or any other self-care practice. Do not forget it!

There are more wonderful things to share about my time off, but I’ll leave it here for now.

And I’m curious to hear about any of your summer travels or breaks. What did you learn? What can you take with you into the coming seasons? Know that you can always comment to connect and keep the conversation going.


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