This post is part of the Gorgeous 50’s series inspired by a book given to me by one of my sisters on my 50th birthday – ‘Grown up and Gorgeous in your 50’s’ by Pamela Robson. I will be sharing some of Pamela’s words and my own thoughts along the way. To see all posts published as part of this series, go here.
After decades of giving to others, it’s time to give back to yourself. Channel your restlessness and greater free time into taking care of your physical, mental and spiritual self. This can involve some very simple actions, yet (to begin with) they may be surprisingly hard after so many years of personal neglect. To begin with, set aside an hour a day for yourself. At the same time each day, choose a quiet space and simply sit in stillness, or write whatever comes into your head in a journal. There’s no pressure. This is a common tool for allowing the day’s ‘baggage’ to flow in and out of your mind, eventually being replaced with real creative thoughts about what you want to do with your time and your talents.
Why is it that we women often neglect ourselves during the process of raising our families? Why do we not realise at the time that we are important too and that everyone benefits (not just ourselves) if we take some time to look after ourselves as well? Why do we feel guilty if we indulge ourselves by partaking in a little self-care or fun?! It’s interesting isn’t it? It’s perplexing as to why it takes until we reach this mid-life phase of life that we understand these things, often too late to save ourselves some of the consequences of that neglect. I know that this was the case for me!
I do understand that while the kids are young and we are deep in the child rearing trenches and working as well, it is hard to find time for yourself. Those are busy days! Some of us do better than others, but generally most of us could certainly do better for ourselves during those years and we really need to lose a lot of the ‘guilt’ we inflict on ourselves.
Since I left my previous corporate working life I have learnt many things, including the following:
- life is too short to be swept along in auto pilot and attempting to please others
- we need to get to know ourselves and create a life that helps keep us feeling balanced and nourished in mind, body & spirit
- we need to love what we do
- we need to try to be brave enough to be our authentic selves without fear of the judgement of others
- we need to forgive ourselves for our perceived weaknesses or failings
- we need to watch that self-critical voice in our heads and replace those words with ones of self-love and encouragement
- self-care is a priority and necessity, not a luxury!
- every kind of adversity holds lessons that help us to grow
- being mindful, present and grateful are simple but powerful tools for obtaining happiness and contentment
Writing my blog has been great therapy for me over the last (nearly) seven years, enabling me to indulge my creative side and to dig deep to help ‘find myself’ – to discover and understand my thoughts and feelings and wants and needs and share my learnings. It’s opened up a whole new world for me and connected me to many like-minded people. Through blogging I discovered a love of photography and ended up doing a Diploma in Professional Photography. I learned that I love to write. I don’t write in a journal. That’s not my thing, but my blog is like my journal! I’ve discovered the benefits of mindfulness and meditation and learning to live more in the present. I’ve discovered so many things about myself, but most importantly, I understand and know myself much better now.
Did you neglect yourself when in the child rearing trenches? Do you make time for yourself now? How well do you know you?
Ciao for now,
Link up here at WOTM or with another of us in the Lovin’ Life Linky team:
Leanne of Deep Fried Fruit | Kathy of 50 Shades of Age |
Deborah of Debbish | Jo of The Hungry Writer – Joanne Tracey.
It doesn’t matter where you link up as it will magically appear on all five blogs.