The last couple weeks have not been my best when it comes to self-care. I haven’t been eating overly well, I’ve been sleeping too much, and I’ve been watching too much TV. When I don’t take care of myself properly, I don’t feel my best, no matter how much inspirational book-reading or podcast-listening or conversation-having that I do simultaneously.
There’s a massive difference between self-care and self-indulgence, and lately I think I’ve been doing too much of the latter. Self-indulgence is short-term gratification, self-care is long-term investment in your wellbeing. I learned this difference so, SO long ago (it was even in this ebook I wrote in 2012, which is no longer available!) but just because we know something doesn’t mean we consistently remember it.
One of my favourite practical strategies for true self-care is Amy Young‘s Sacred Six practice. She sets herself six non-negotiable self-care activities that address fundamental aspects of her wellbeing, and commits to doing them daily. This is where the work of self-care comes in: it’s not always pretty and fun and full of bubbles. Sometimes it means doing exactly the activities you’re resisting, because you know that ultimately they will increase your happiness long-term. You can learn more about her method here.
I had tried to set myself a Sacred Six back in December, but didn’t stick to it because I didn’t personalize it enough to ME. I essentially tweaked Amy’s list, but without enough customization for my life. This time around, I’m adding in new items that feel relevant to this season of my life, with a plan to revisit them in a few months.
I also really, really don’t like the number 6 (don’t ask me why!), but I love the number 7 (it’s my birthday), so a change was made. “Sacred” is not my favourite word either – I love sacredness as a concept but am not a fan of the word itself (how it sounds/looks). Yes, I’m weird! Hence, the Super Seven are born.
Here are my Super Seven:
- Zero-In Time: time with no external input (from music, podcasts, conversations, screens), not counting my meditation practice
- Journal OR blog post
- Sweat OR stretch
- Eat meals without screens: no more eating in front of the TV
- 7–11: wake-up & lights-out times
- Nature time: forest or lake or park
- Eat green vegetables
I’m looking for a solid, free habit-tracking app so that I can check all seven off every day, but most of them only allow you to track a couple daily habits. Otherwise, I might try to track these daily habits in Asana!
What would your Sacred Six or Super Seven be?