"Begin at the beginning," the King said, very gravely, "and go on 'til you come to the end: then stop.” -Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
I think the first step in practicing better self care is simply deciding that you are worth it.
"But.." You say, "...I have children, and a husband, and family and friends and a career and housework and all my volunteer activities and church activities and community activities and a blog and facebook and.....well, (fill in the blank here)"
"I know I should take better care of myself, but I just don't seem to ever be able to fit it into my life" -I hear this all the time!
My response: "Well, if you weren't here, who would do all of this stuff???"
And I bet you can't think of anyone more capable or perfect for the job of managing your 'crazy, busy, life' than YOU! (And, quite frankly, I can assure you that no one else wants that job! They all have busy lives of their own!)
Well, then, I think we have established your worth!
You are important and valuable. Practicing better self care is just going to make you much stronger, more patient and just plain better all around for dealing with all of your responsibilities. You benefit. The people who you care about benefit. There is no reason not to!
So, where do you begin?
One goal of this self care journey should just be to keep things simple.
Self care is supposed to feel good and be good for you. We don't want it to be a stressful and guilt-provoking. The rule of thumb is to just do your best to take care of yourself whenever you can, and however you can. (There really are no other rules.)
Plan in it to your daily routine. Self Care does not have include the Queen for the Day package at your local day spa (but don't turn it down if it is offered, for crying out loud!) It can be a daily ritual of enjoying a cup of coffee before everyone gets up...or enjoying a cup of tea before you go to bed. A weekly bubble bath; splurging and buying yourself a springy bouquet, or a decadent chocolate truffle. It doesn't matter how little (or big) you go about taking better care of yourself. What matters is that you simply get in the habit of doing something nice for yourself each day!
Take Good Care!