Self-Care and Why It’s Important

I live in North America; Canada, to be exact and it’s a busy place. If you live in a large city you know that it’s difficult to take time for yourself. I hear this all the time. More than once a week I get a friend/family member/colleague/acquaintance telling me that they just don’t have the time to this or that (insert something fun/relaxing here).

I’m going to say something provocative.We all need to stop making excuses and take time for things we enjoy. I work two jobs. I know how difficult it is to find time but I’m committed to doing things I like or, like many others, I would get so fed up with going through the motions of everyday.

A few years ago I learned the term self-care and I have never looked back. What does it mean? I can’t believe I’m going to reference Foucault in this post, but here it goes. Philosopher, Michael Foucault, found the art of living (French art de vivre, Latin ars vivendi) and the care of self (French le souci de soi) to be central to philosophy (thanks again, Wikipedia). So, what does that mean? It means enjoy the life you are living and take time to care for yourself. You are important! The love you give yourself is important! If that means going to the movies and eating a bag of popcorn (this is me), reading a book in a cafe (also, me), or going for long walks/runs (me, again!), then do it! If you don’t have time, then let’s make a change. It can be as simple as making time for a relaxed breakfast.

Recent time for myself: papusas in Kensington Market and Chomsky. 

Be mindful and present in the life you’re living. Take time to do something for yourself, for someone you love, or maybe even a stranger. These things don’t have to be huge tasks. That’s not the point. And I’m not saying drop everything to be selfish. The point is to make everyday changes to assist with your mental health and the balance you have throughout your life. With that balance will come happiness. Being happy in the present is what makes life worth living.

How do you practice self-care?

Feature Image via Tad Wagner Studio.

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