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What’s Your Self-Care Sunday Routine?

October '19

Last week my yoga teacher mentioned she was reading about ‘Self-Care Sunday’ in many publications. While I published a book on self care last year, this phrase was new to me, so I decided to investigate it on the internet. ‘Self-Care Sunday was, indeed, all over the place! Folks mentioned many different practices for their Sunday self-care routine from “setting no alarm in the morning,” to “spending off-screen time with family.”

These articles on ‘Self-Care Sunday’ were filled with good ideas, but I began to notice a theme. The practices described gave readers lots of useful ideas, but focused on changing their outer world activities, so their inner world might become calmerin short, finding time and ways to decompress.

The practices contained in the articles were useful and worthy of adopting, if they work for you. In fact, most of them were included in my book, Midlife Magic: The 7 Day Self-Care Plan to Boost Your Energy and Make You Smile. However, with the exception of mindfulness practices, none of the articles I read helped you focus on your inner world. (By no means did I conduct a comprehensive review here.)

Changing your outer world routine, or ‘what you do’, to feel calmer and happier makes total sense. However, changing your inner world, or who you beis an equally important aspect of self care, and perhaps more profound.

For example, in Midlife Magic, Day 1 focuses on the self-care skill of Self Compassion. Kristin Neff, a specialist in this arena defines self-compassion as composed of three main components self-kindness, common humanity, and mindfulness. Wikipedia elaborates on these aspects.

      “Self-kindness: Self-compassion entails being warm towards oneself when encountering pain and personal shortcomings, rather than ignoring them or hurting oneself with self-criticism.

       Common humanity: Self-compassion also involves recognizing that suffering and personal failure is part of the shared human experience.

       Mindfulness: Self compassion requires taking a balanced approach to one’s negative emotions so that feelings are neither suppressed nor exaggerated. Negative thoughts and emotions are observed with openness, so that they are held in mindful awareness. Mindfulness is a non-judgmental, receptive mind state in which individuals observe their thoughts and feelings.”

In Midlife Magic, at the end of reading DAY 1, you discover 10 action steps for developing greater Self Compassion. You then choose one to implement that day. When you shine the spotlight on your inner world in this way, you give attention to who you are being. When you focus on the outer world you attend to what you are doing. Both serve you well. As the director of one coaches training course I attended used to say, “When you work with clients, its dooby, dooby, do!” Or translated: do-be-do-be-do!

So when next Sunday arrives, what will your self-care practice be? Please share your favorite one, so we can all learn a bit more about this critical effort to improve our lives and those of others.

Happy Halloween!

P.S. If you like, you can learn to learn more about Midlife Magic, or purchase a copy from your favorite bookstore here.

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