Blue WildflowerSelf-care should be in the vocabulary of – and practiced by – everyone. Self-care is learning how to care for ourselves by identifying what we need to do to be healthy, vibrant individuals and then practicing these habits on a daily basis. As integrated beings we are body, mind, emotion, and spirit – we cannot separate one aspect of ourselves from another. When we are physically ill – we are also effected emotionally and when we are stressed and feeling emotional – it effects our physical body, as well as, our thinking and cognitive functioning.

One of the most important things is to have balance in our lives. Although we are slow to recognize what may be happening, we know when we’re out of balance. We overindulge, eat the wrong foods, do not get enough sleep, become irritable and stressed – resulting in fatigue and loss of energy.

Does it take discipline to practice self-care? Absolutely! But the rewards far out weigh the effort. To nurture our physical body it’s important to eat nutritiously. Start to read labels and avoid foods that contain high fructose corn syrup (you’ll be amazed at how many foods do). Eat less sugar, red meat and white flour and instead eat more fiber, fruits and vegetables. Limit caffeine and increase the amount of water you drink daily (half your weight in ounces). In addition, exercise and get eight hours of horizontal rest. You’ll be amazed at how much better you will feel.

To nurture our emotional, mental and spiritual health we need to take time for prayer and/or meditation, create new habits, take time to laugh and have fun. Gift yourself with 10 minutes a day to just be silent. Finally, because healthy relationships nurture us, tell your family and friends how much you love them, and most importantly – love yourself for the wonderful person that you are.