This is our third #lamsquare28daychallenge this year, and this time we do something a little bit different - it's about self-care. When we think about taking good care of ourselves, we may have very different definitions, yet buying expensive jewelleries or handbags, or going to a luxury spa or a 2-week Europe trip may not necessarily bring you joy, peace and health. Rather it's more important to build self-care practices in your daily routine. So first thing first: what is self-care and why is it important to us?
What is self-care and what isn't?
When it comes to the question: "What is self-care"? I really like the explanation from Raphailia Michael, MA, where she mentioned about "Self-care is any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health. Although it’s a simple concept in theory, it’s something we very often overlook. Good self-care is key to improved mood and reduced anxiety. It’s also key to a good relationship with oneself and others.
What isn’t self-care? Knowing what self-care is not might be even more important. It is not something that we force ourselves to do, or something we don’t enjoy doing. As Agnes Wainman explained, self-care is “something that refuels us, rather than takes from us. ”Self-care isn’t a selfish act either. It is not only about considering our needs; it is rather about knowing what we need to do in order to take care of ourselves, being subsequently, able to take care of others as well. That is, if I don’t take enough care of myself, I won’t be in the place to give to my loved ones either."
So are you ready?
This is a self challenge, so you can invite your friends and families to join together. It's free and the set up is designed to allow you work at your own pace. Feel free to choose activities you like to suit your needs as long as you keep trying everyday. The idea is to encourage self learning and personal growth by having a routine to practice and a group to support each other, also realising changes can be very simple but the impact is so powerful to help us take back control of our life, time and health.
Some guidelines for you:
Invite a friend: When we share our goals, we do better. Announce it out, get a group of a few good friends or just join our Instagram or Facebook group.
Plan it: Use the following self-care checklist or planner to plan your schedule. Make a decision to follow through your plan.
If you miss a day, it's ok: Try to make it up at the end of the day by for example a 5-minute meditation before bed or just miss a day! Always look for opportunity to practice your self-care.
Choose your activity: Choose what you really like to do (one or more per day), what you enjoy doing, and later on implement it as a routine that works for you.
Keep a conscious mind: Don't just do it because it is on your calendar, practice it with mindfulness, aware of how you feel, why you do it, enjoy the moment, and ask yourself what you gain from that experience.
Download our Reflection Journal to help you prepare for this challenge.
Although self-care means different things to different people, there is a basic checklist that we can use for ideas. Use the following printable pdf to fill out your own self-care checklist or planner. Set up a 28-day self-care (or even just 14-day) routine and see how you feel before and after. If you are looking for ideas for meditation, yoga or some simple exercise, check out from our previous Mind-Body-Balance Challenge.
I’ll be logging my progress on our Facebook group (Lamsquare Learning Community) and Instagram (@deane.lam) everyday, feel free to use the hashtag #lamsquare28daychallenge to share your progress with us.