Self-Care in Crisis
2020 has been a year for the books. It has challenged us in ways that we never anticipated. Through the pandemic and social justice movements, we have felt an array of emotions from sadness, fear, guilt, and so much more. Things have certainly been overwhelming, but through it all, it is important that we notice our resiliency. We are still showing up. We are still doing what we need to do, getting things done – that, in itself, is a huge achievement!
To continue showing up for ourselves, our communities, and our world, we must not burn out. Given our circumstances, that can be incredibly difficult! That is one of the reasons practicing self-care is arguably more important than ever. Certainly, I have struggled with the idea of self-care. In a sense, it can almost feel selfish as there are so many issues that are bigger than myself! However, I have come to realize that if I do not stop and take care of myself, I cannot be there for others.
Practicing self-care enables us to reset and find a sense of calm, helping us be more prepared to tackle our greatest challenges. It simply allows us to seek a sense of hope, purpose, and love; rather than exhaustion. As Audrey Lorde, American writer and Civil Right Activist, famously said, “Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.”
Unfortunately, the challenges we are enduring as a country and a world do not have quick fixes. The pandemic is not over. Yes, we have gotten a better understanding of the virus, but it is still a long road ahead. Similarly, tackling systemic racism requires lifelong commitment and dedication. We are in this for a long-haul. And as leaders, we need to be prepared.
By spending some time assessing what we need, we can learn to take care of ourselves more efficiently and effectively. We can continue to build resilience in order to serve our schools, organizations, and communities. Give yourself permission to practice some self-care this week and encourage others to do the same!
When we are in the midst of chaos, it can be hard to even know how to care for ourselves! Spend some time assessing what you need. Where are you feeling drained? How can you build some more energy and momentum?
- Mind: How is your mind responding to everything that is going on? What is one way you can support your mind in this process?
- Maybe it is reading a new book or drawing!
- Heart: How is your heart responding to everything that is going on? What is one way you can support your heart in this process?
- Maybe it is reminding a friend that you care for them or starting a gratitude journal!
- Body: How is your body feeling? What is one way you can support your body in this process?
- Maybe it is trying a new meditation app or going for a walk!
Try out some new practices and strategies and know that by caring for yourself, you are caring for the world!
*Meet the Author*
Caroline is going on her third year with Leadership Inspirations. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Leadership Development and holds B.A.’s in Psychology and Integrated Educational Studies.
Favorite Quote: “You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make” – Jane Goodall
Fun Facts: 1) I’m from Seattle 2) I LOVE Golden Retrievers 3) I have celebrated Holi in India