This week we are joined by Vicky Shilling from The Flourishing Pantry. Vicky is a coach for wellness entrepreneurs. She has a great way of breaking down all those things that are overwhelming and showing you how to push aside the big tasks and break them down into little ones that actually work. I have done a number of Vicky's challenges and online classes and she just makes things seem so much easier than we make it out to be. Vicky and I connected back at the beginning of our social media days and had the joy of connecting in person earlier in the year in Dublin. Since then I have had the delight of being part of Vicky's Flouishing Entreprenuers and creating a gorgeous Strawberries 'n Cream Raw Cheesecake for her blog
Here Vicky shares with us her self care tips for busy working women, a topic very close to my heart, and something I think we all can do with having at the forefront of our minds as we are so conditioned to feeling guilty for putting ourselves first. I'll hand you over to Vicky so she can share her tips with you.
Self-care tips for busy working women
Whether you work for yourself or someone else, we can all agree at times our jobs can leave us feeling pressured and stressed. Sometimes it seems that putting ourselves first comes at the very bottom of the (long!) list of things that need to be done for our business and others.
But with ‘burn out’ now an officially recognised condition by the World Health Organisation , we all need to be taking care of ourselves to prevent reaching the end of the line when it comes to our health and wellbeing.
As the co-founder of a wellness retreat brand – The Reset – I find myself talking about self-care regularly with women. Many of them find the concept very difficult and often guilt-inducing. The idea of putting ourselves before others seems so selfish and not something we have time or resources for.
But is that really the truth?
Here are some of the best tips we share with guests on The Reset retreats and at our events when it comes to self-care for exceptionally busy people:
1. Schedule your self-care time – just like you would a meeting
Busy people live by their calendars, I know I certainly do! If you’re anything like me, you can quite easily fill every hour of the day with meetings, chores and tasks, with barely a second to take a breather in-between.
A great way to stop this happening and to add in some important time for yourself is to add it to your calendar. Because we all know we want to spend more time relaxing, reading a book or catching up with a friend. But if it’s not in the calendar? It doesn’t happen!
If you’re worried that other things will take priority and bulldoze over your dedicated self-care time, remember to book in a ‘back up’ slot for yourself. Then there’s not chance of your ‘me’ time being forgotten.
2. Self-care isn’t all or nothing
Just because you don’t have the time or resources to dedicate a whole day in the spa or on a silent retreat in India doesn’t mean self-care isn’t worth trying to prioritise at all.
A little and often approach to self-care goes a really long way to supporting your mental and physical health and avoiding the dreaded burn-out.
How about trying to squeeze in something small like this into every week:
- Reading a chapter of a fiction book
- Calling a friend for a catch up
- Refreshing your to-do list so you’re less stressed tomorrow
- Preparing some healthy breakfasts for the week (Kristie has a great selection on her website!)
- Going for a walk on your lunch break rather than eating at your desk
Whatever it is that lights you up and replenishes you is something to make sure you’re prioritising
It can be really small and feel insignificant in the moment. But it will all add up to a better sense of satisfaction and wellbeing if you layer up all these tiny windows of time.
3. Drop the guilt
We’ve all seen those inspirational quotes and memes on social media – you wouldn’t let your mobile phone battery drain to 0%, so why let yourself?
It’s easier said than done perhaps but it’s key to remember when it comes to self-care that putting others first all the time will leave you burned-out and unable to serve anyone in the long run.
4. Self-care in fact is the least selfish thing you can do.
You will be more able to serve, to give, to share, to participate and to help others if you prioritise what you need first.
I don’t know about you but I also find that time away from the desk always makes me more creative. Diving into a book or chatting to a friend gives me space to come up with better ideas than anything I could think of if I was flogging away, chained to my laptop only. And those great ideas much better serve my audience than me relentlessly churning out the same old stuff.
If you’re really struggling with that sense of guilt then I recommend getting a journal or notebook out and getting all those thoughts out on paper. It’s fascinating to put it all down and see the phrases and stories you’re telling yourself about why you can’t look after yourself a little bit more often.
Seeing your thoughts in black and white can sometimes be a real eye-opener to what’s going on in your head. Catching those negative sentences and little white lies you’re telling yourself and replacing them with some more supportive and constructive thoughts – “I deserve to take a break,” or “I can serve others better when I take care of myself” might just be the drip feed effect you need to prioritise yourself more. Starting today!
Vicky is an award winning blogger, retreat host and coach helping busy entrepreneurs find healthier ways to eat and live. Her blog The Flourishing Pantry offers recipes, inspiration and tips on living a healthy life whilst building a business through blog posts and interviews. Vicky co-hosts The Reset women’s wellness retreats in Ireland and abroad.
Thank you for joining us this week.
I would love to hear your favourite self care tips. What do you turn to to help restore the batteries?
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