First published in the Digest, June 2016
Feel all the Feels: a Self Care Manifesto.
In light of the darkness many of us feel – what I will say is to give yourself some room to breathe. To make space. To feel all the feelings that you can bear to feel. To be angry. To feel sad. Anxious. But also to comfort yourself too. And each other. Be around the good people. Avoid the timelines that leave you sickened and sad. That prevent you from sleeping. Or breathing properly.
Breathe despite the pain you might feel.
Practice being kind to yourself however you may feel.
Give yourself permission to take care of yourself.
Give yourself permission to take breaks.
To not be hard on yourself if you can´t focus on your work.
That you can't focus on anything.
You don't need to explain yourself or apologise.
You don't have to have the words figured out yet for how you're feeling.
Or to articulate any responses.
Let yourself be supported, whether by another kind human, a magical animal, the floor, your breath, and perhaps all of the above.
Try to be around the things/people/places that nourish you- even if that can only be through your thoughts (and even if that means avoiding certain ones for a while). Remembering that there are good people in the world is essential, and cultivating community with them can help you feel less alone with your feelings.
If you need some space and distance from things, find a way to do something really nurturing for yourself, be it taking time to prepare yourself something nice to eat, or simply pausing in your day to breathe and feel connected to yourself.
Self care is not selfish. And you can move forward with much more gusto and strength if you've taken time out to recentre yourself.
Take your time in this process and know that when you can take this time to be kind to yourself, you will return more focused, stronger, even more brilliant.
Don't despair, or spread yourself too thin. Or in places that don't appreciate you.
Take care of you.
Take care of those that you love.