The thoughts and ideas put forward in this series are just that – thoughts and ideas. The topic of wellbeing is sensitive, and I want to make sure that everything you read here is used positively. With any advice offered you can take it or you can leave it. Not everyone has the same responses to things, because we are different and we are diverse.
If you are feeling unusually low, out of control, or unable to cope, please seek help. Whether that be in the form of a doctor or a friend. Just know that you are not alone. This series was inspired by the #timetotalk campaign, because it is just that – time to talk. Not everyone feels comfortable talking straight away, but hopefully when you are the people around you will be ready to listen.
This week’s post is by Tony “The Bottle” from Under an Influence
Hi there, readers of the spicy bean.
Nice to meet you all, My name’s Tony, I go by “The Bottle” on my own blog and I’m here as a guest blogger for Katie. This is my first time as a guest poster so go easy on me, please.
So the theme for this series as you probably all know is about self care. So today I’m going to outline my own, maybe a little different views of self care. So without further ado, here we go.
To give you some context about me, I work in the care industry as a support worker, so I’m not exactly a stranger to mental health. I’ve sat through countless hours of training about how important self care is with regards to my job. How can I be trusted to take care of someone else’s mental health if I cannot control my own?
I don’t necessarily have many experiences to share with you all because self care because it’s never really affected me personally. Sure there are times when I get stressed but i don’t usually let it affect me for long. I have always seemed to have the ability to just go with the flow. It makes it a lot easier to keep yourself together if you take things one step at a time, don’t look too far into the future. Generally care less about the unimportant.
So yeah, I’m quite useless when it comes to personal experiences so I’m sorry if thats what you came to read. However, working in such close proximity with mental health, I do have some ideas and tips to share about how you could maybe improve yours if you haven’t found anything that works yet.
A Realist Approach To Self Care
After reading around the topic of self care a bit in preparation for this post, I came to the conclusion that a lot of posts on the topic are complete BS. Because no specific activity, diet or amount of yoga will guarantee mental stability. I’m not saying that any of these definitely wont help you, what I am saying is that self care is subjective and should be treated as such.
Self care is about recharging yourself; forcing yourself to eat food you hate or working out when you don’t want to isn’t going to help your mental state. Again this isn’t the same for everyone, eating healthy and working out can make people happy and a healthy diet and exercise is very important and probably will make you feel better in the long run, but forcing yourself to do something you hate isn’t going to help your mental state.
The same goes for meditation, reading and taking baths, things that work for one person might not work for you, so find your own activity. Mine for example when I’m stressed is to nap, things always seem so much clearer after a few hours kip. So find your nap. Find your thing to take the pressure away.
You know yourself better than anyone, you know what makes you happy, the trick to self care, at least in my opinion is finding time for these things consistently, take a ‘you day’ at least once a week and do something you love, something that recharges you.
This all said, if you’re looking for something, I do think music is a great place to start. Music has so much influence over our emotions and can be a great tool. I suggest a playlist for each mood, have one full of happy songs you love to pick you up. Have a sad one to listen to when you’re feeling down.
Katie made a great point in her post for this series. It really is a good idea to allow yourself to feel, so if you are feeling down, put on some sad songs and let your emotions do their thing, if you’re interested I have a similar post on my blog which explains this idea in further detail along with some of my favourite sad songs here – 10 Songs to Listen to if You’re Feeling Down. – An Alternative Approach to Self Care (Kinda). It’s really not helpful to ignore some emotions in favour of others, you wont become happy by ignoring your other emotions, you feel certain emotions for a reason, they shouldn’t be ignored.
Two extra pieces of advice before I go:
- Try to stay aware of your mental health, if you feel it’s starting to deteriorate talk to someone, there are countless mental health organisations that you can talk to, don’t be afraid to contact them. (https://www.mind.org.uk is a great one)
- Try not to bottle up your emotions, keeping them in will only lead to suffering. (Or they’ll all come out when you’re drunk which isn’t good, I’ve been there)
Thank you so much for reading, I hope you enjoyed, I’m very new to blogging and I’m still finding my feet with it all, if you did like any the things i had to say feel free to head over to my own blog https://underaninfluence.blog and maybe read some of the things my two friends and I have been writing in the past couple of weeks. We’d love to see you there!
Thanks for having me,
TAKE CARE OF YOURSELVES.
Tony “The Bottle”
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