What does your to-do list look like?
Are you a wife? A mom? A friend? A student? A business owner? A caregiver? An employee? A coach? A volunteer? The to-do list could go on and on.
I see you! You are that woman that is doing it all. You are taking on many roles and trying your best to please everyone. I have been in your shoes. Until several years ago, that was me, too. I was doing my best to be a wife, mom, employee, business owner, caregiver, volunteer, friend, teacher, mentor and probably other things I didn’t even realize I was doing.
But in 2008 I got a very loud wake up call. That phone call came and my world came crashing down. My 37 year old brother was diagnosed with cancer. He died 10 months later. Our family would never be the same. His wife and children would never be the same. It took that heartbreak to open my eyes. My own health and self-care had to become a priority. If I wanted to continue being everyone’s everything, something had to change. I needed to put myself, my health and my wellness on the to-do list.
Are you putting YOU and your own health and wellness on the to-do list?
As a digital entrepreneur I spend a lot of time online and offline with other women business owners. It breaks my heart to hear and see the pressures women put on themselves. Countless times I’ve heard stories of women who don’t eat or sleep on a regular basis. They barely even take the time to keep themselves hydrated throughout the day. They push themselves to the point of exhaustion and many I know have even been hospitalized. If you want to do it all, you can, but let’s talk about YOU!
You deserve to be at the top of the to-do list!
Your own health and wellness routines can make or break you. You may think your doing the right thing by helping others before you help yourself, but you are wrong. Yes, I am saying it. Ignoring your body is wrong!
Think about it. How do you feel when you haven’t slept, haven’t eaten or taken the time to dress or shower? Do you feel productive? Are you cranky? Are you the best you? If you keep up at this pace you are going to crash. Your body can only take so much before it gives out.
It’s hard to accept, but YOU deserve to be at the top of the to-do list. There is no shame in practicing self-love and self-care.
I want to challenge you to move yourself to the top of the to-do list!
Let’s start with your health. When was the last time you had a physical? Dental exam or a visit to your gynecologist? I am sure you are aware that many diseases can be treated or prevented with early detection. Schedule those appointments today!
What are you doing to move more and eat better? Have you heard about Ecotherapy? Getting outside to move more and soak up nature can help relieve symptoms of depression, anxiety and ADD. If you have high blood pressure or diabetes moving more outside can help you to improve your overall health. They recommend you focus on three things while your outside. Birds chirping, the visualization of the leaves and trees and the sounds of running water. The great outdoors can be a great natural medicine.
Eating better and keeping your body hydrated is the best way to fuel yourself. Again, if you want to be everything to everyone, start with you! Eat every meal, starting with breakfast. Add plenty of fruits and vegetables to your diet and snack smart. Set reminders and take breaks. No excuses!
Here’s the tough one, self-care. I know all of the things we already talked about encompass self-care, but I want you to think about your emotional well-being, too. Self-care looks different to each of us. Only YOU know what you need to do to refresh and rejuvenate your mental health. You have to find what works for you and just do it. Self-care doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive. It just has to be something that you enjoy. Put it on the to-do list!
Re-evaluate your to-do list!
Give yourself permission to let it go. If there are things on the to-do list that aren’t bringing you joy, cross it off. Don’t be afraid to say “no” and just do you!
Give yourself permission to become a priority. Seriously, if you want to continue to take care of others, you’re going to have to start with you. I am sure you have heard the saying, “Charity begins at home.” Practice self-care and self-love. No guilt allowed.
Give yourself permission to ask for help. This is a tough one. As women we are socialized to believe we are failing, if we aren’t doing it all, even if it kills us. This year I hired someone to help clean my home. My husband and I both agreed that this is something that should have happened long ago. You know why it didn’t? I was afraid of what people would think. As women we aren’t just hard on ourselves, we are hard on other women, too.
You wouldn’t believe the number of friends and family that had something to say about the fact that I had help cleaning my home. Jealousy and envy does not look good on anyone. Make a decision to get or ask for help.
Please be aware of the way you judge other women. Make a concerted effort to support and uplift the women that have the courage to ask for the help they need.
I learned quickly that I deserved a spot on my own to-do list. Don’t wait for a tragic event or illness to prompt you to cross things off your list. Life is too short to waste on the things that don’t bring you joy.
How and when will you take the first steps to put yourself on the to-do list?