How often do you take a moment to check in with yourself?  Has it been a while?  

If it has, do that now.  When was the last time you took a day to do something that you entirely enjoy?  I’m not talking about an hour here or there, I’m talking about sleeping til whenever it is you want to sleep to, getting up, dawdling your morning routine out however long you like, and taking all those hours between then and when you go to bed activities that feel good to your soul.  

Some of us are lucky, and have had plenty of those days.  For us, maybe self care means taking care of stuff we don’t really want to but feels good when it’s done, like cleaning up, going to the bank, paying bills, what have you.  

Some of us aren’t so lucky, and feel overwhelmed by the endless need to make money and do the day to day chores that eat up all our time.  When this happens, it’s so easy to feel put upon, like life itself has an agenda to create a cloak of permanent stress that becomes quickly exhausting, eating up any extra energy you may have had.  

If this is you, make plans.  Set a date, far enough away from any deadlines so there’s nothing hanging over your. Mark your calendar, and inform your friends, partner, family.  This is your day.  When that day comes, obey Nike’s advertising slogan and just do it.  Maybe you can take more than a day.   Great, do that too.  Stretch this time however long you feel comfortable with and buy tickets, make non-refundable deposits, and commit yourself fully to it so that when the time comes, you can’t pull out because really, you don’t have the time to do this for yourself…nope.  You need this, you deserve this.  Surfdom has been outlawed for centuries, yet we shackle ourselves to our workaday routine as if our jobs were cruel Russian landowners who despised our happiness.  
Ok.  That was step one.  I didn’t tell you that this was a multi-step process, did I?  Ha ha!  Tricked you! 

Step two is to make some time with someone you love and talk with them.  Have a heart to heart.  Maybe this is your partner, or your best friend, maybe even your mother or father.  Get into it.  Talk about the good things, communicate how you’re feeling about the bad.  Let the love flow and, carefully, lovingly, own the frustrations you’re having as well as the joys.  Do something enjoyable together, even if it’s just having a cup of tea, or a walk down a well-trodden path.  Life is a loop-de-loop of happiness and pain, and bonding with our loved ones over what we’re seeing, thinking, feeling about it all makes the good times all the richer and lessens the burden of the bad.  

After all this, check in with yourself again.  How do you feel now?  And if all of this is asking too much for this time in your life, pay attention to what makes you feel calm, clear, and grounded, incorporating as many of these things into your day as much as possible.  These precious moments can provide the fortitude we need to make it through the storm, whenever it comes.