Research Paper By Samar Naim
(Life and Executive Coach, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES)
M.I.R.R.O.R back the Self in You…
The way you treat yourself sets the standard for others. Dr. Sonya Friedman
Did you ever feel guilty about doing something that primarily serves you? Many people would say that taking care of yourself is only natural… but is it? Are you really aware of the importance and impact that “you” have on your own life and on that of others? Do you really value yourself?
Meaning of Self-Care:
One of the very comprehensive descriptions that caught my attention about what self-care stands for was presented in a document by the University of Kentucky Human Resources. Self-care is described as:
Intentional actions you take to care for your physical, mental and emotional health
What Self-Care means to me:
A closer and dissecting look at the description above highlights elegantly the basis of self-care to me: Intentional: It is about having an intention… a conscious thought… an objective… an aim towards self-care. It stems from within you for you. Actions: Self-care is not just mouth-business! You need to act towards it… to contribute to it… to maintain and nurture it. It is not a one-time wonder as well. There is that small “s” in those actions that makes a whole lot of difference. Self-care involves a series of actions on an ongoing basis (which is also dependent on your self-assessment).
yes, “You”! Who else are you expecting to take care of you? Hmmm, your loved ones? Well, Maybe. But dependence on others for your own self-care can only go so far as you will be missing a key element of what self-care is: It is “intentional”. To Care: What does “care” mean to you? To me, it is such a personal word! I find it very generous and heartfelt. What about you? In light of your self-care, how do you choose to sense “care”?
Physical, Mental, Emotional:
It is about your mind, body, and soul. It is not only what you do for the “outside” but also, what you do for the “inside” and the “deeper inside”. Health: How do you define “health”? Is it only about “Clinical” health?! …the one involving a doctor, a nurse, and a hospital or a clinic?! Well, I choose to see it abundantly. I see health as wellness, peace, balance, happiness and so much more… I see it as smiles, hear it as relaxation breaths, smell it as freshness, taste it as dessert, and feel it in the skin-to-skin touch with a little cuddly baby. Self-care is about investing in “You”. I sometimes relate self-care to being selfish. Before you start rolling your eyes, in my dictionary ‘being selfish’ stands for putting yourself first. Even further, the basic definition of selfish involves taking interest in oneself. So what? Be selfish. Once you internalize that light and energy towards you, you will experience how that light and energy will shine from you onto others (I even explore that in my coaching model “S-E-L-F-I-S-H”). Self-Care is a “right” that you have. So, please claim it as your own and for your own sake. Self-Care is not about disregarding others. Do not belittle it.