Self-care the challenge

The activation of personal positivity surely has to stem from accessing self time, to take care of your needs. For as you consider yourself correctly, this energises positivity and accesses a deeper sense of happiness and wellbeing to be enjoyed and shared. If you can find a way to befriend yourself from the inside, you will be well on the way to overriding the self-sabotage freak that lurks
on in us all.

The topic of self-care is a daily challenge for many of us, as reflected in the myriad of publicised articles with suggestions on how we can activate ours. I found myself in a perfect place to really get this life truth, as for the past year I have been living ‘between homes’, becoming a house/cat sitter around our friends network. A touch extreme, but by removing a permanent home option, I’ve had to find where this in myself and self-care is a central principle for accessing my internal steadiness.

Self-care the practice

Before this year, yes, I knew about self care, practised what I thought was enough, it wasn’t. My body barometers would flash up tinnitus, herpes, IBS, headaches etc as I tiptoed towards burnout again. I was being forced to acknowledge that I simply was not putting enough priority into personal self care practice. Do you recognise this? The pressure of keeping everyday life ticking onwards at such a pace has caused an epidemic of stress and anxiety disorders, as we become stuck in a cycle of prioritising earning above caring for us, who need to be healthy and inspired to create the currency flow in the first place.

At the core of self care lies a choice which determines a pattern along your life path. If the majority of us are tipping towards burnout much of the time, how can we prioritise clearly when we are swayed off centre by being weary, emotional, angry, lonely or over excited? Our emotions swing the focus, if we let them run that riot. What we could do well with is a default positioning,
somewhere neutral we can just drop into when priorities are swayed and we get confused. I go to Qigong, Meditation and Reiki. These wellness practices balance my mind, body and spirit; the synergy facilitates a clearer mind and a more comfortable body as natural self-healing is enhanced. Balancing the chi is central to my thriving with positivity and purpose.

Self-care, the art

Why is self-care an art-form? Because it is an innately inventive process that offers space and time for the unwind, a letting go into the creative flow of the now moment and trusting the process of release and recharge. From the emptying out of the old is formed space, place to attract the new. The challenge is to become curious about stillness. This stillness key is one of the Taoist
‘secrets’ which when touched, activates your deep vitality resource. Self-care is an art to be crafted, nurtured and even indulged in by adopting healthful practices that give on many different levels. From 5 minute mindfulness bursts to class sessions, online courses, trainings and retreats, there is a spectrum within the self-care rainbow to entice us all. The amount
of self-care required is different for us all, and it’s an art form to find the right equilibrium, sometimes getting it just right and another, so very wrong…!

Self-care, the process

Alexander Pope reminds us that ‘To err is to be human’, to be human is also to find humour in the tricky as well as the fun. Laughter is a one of the release valves of the self-care process, music and dance can be others. Your system knows what it would most like if given space to express. Qigong can be a bridging manoeuvre. The mindful movements help to land you in the present
moment, to the stillness at the very centre of you, where your fundamental creativity sparkles up. This creative space is also where our laughter originates.

Self care need not take an age, but it does need to be as effective as you can allow; and therein lies the yin, drawing you in to receive resource and so, of course, one begins revitalisation by letting go, completing this tale of flux and flow, for now.

About the author: Clara Apollo – BA hons RGN A Qigong teacher, Reiki master, meditation mentor, Chi Time radio presenter, speaker and workshop/retreat leader, Clara is passionate about finding ways to help you activate your innate natural energy supply to steadily underpin everything you do. Access a free qigong/chi kung training video and more via her website

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