By Dr. Rusty Sieck
Executive Pastor of Ministries
Are you weary? Do you feel like you don't have what it takes to accomplish all that's on your daily to-do list? Do you feel overwhelmed, inadequate, and at the point of saying enough is enough?
You are not alone. Mental stresses are real and weigh on us all. At times we feel lost and unsure of what direction we are to take. We even, at times, feel like giving up. I want you to know that these feelings are not foreign, strange, or isolated to you. You are not alone, but when we feel this way, it is our body's way of warning us that it is time for some TLC; it's time for action.
We cannot just let these feelings go unchecked and unprocessed we must take action to move toward wholeness and healing. It's time for self-care.
Here is the thing, when I mention self-care, you are already thinking I don't have time for one more thing on top of everything else that is on my plate. The reality is that we need to begin to build self-care into the rhythm of our lives. To do this, we need to say no to something else so we can say yes to the true care that we need.
Where do we begin? It begins with acknowledging that it's ok to take care of yourself. The tendency after reading that statement is to feel guilt, in that we think making room for taking care of ourselves is selfish. That is the farthest thing from the truth. And no, the Bible does not directly talk about self-care in so many words, but taking care of yourself is implied and a given. The Bible says, "Love your neighbor as you love yourself." (Mark 12:31) We truly cannot love others the way God intends us to love if we don't take time to love ourselves. It is understanding that,
"Self-Care is giving the world the best of you, not what's left of you." -Katie Reed
Do you feel like you only have what's leftover to give? Then it's time to start practicing some self-care. To do this, I have provided some easy steps to start moving to a regular self-care practice in your life.
Steps to Self-Care
1. Evaluate your schedule, responsibilities, and to-do lists and make room for regularly taking care of yourself. Remember, you will have to say no to something so you can say yes to your wellbeing.
2. Create a plan for regular self-care. Your plan needs to address opportunities for daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly self-care.
Feed your soul – (Daily Devotion)
Build Relationships (Weekly - debrief with Spouse or friend)
Mental Health Day (Monthly – Take a break, do what refreshes you)
Personal Development (Quarterly – read a book, attend a seminar, go away on a retreat. The focus being on your development and growth.)
Vacation – (Yearly – put everything on pause, getaway as a family, or with friends to simply enjoy life)
This is a very simple example of a schedule to start building in regular self-care. But you do you. Find the things that will best help you thrive and implement them into your schedule. Don't just go through the motions; be intentional about living a healthy life.
So, don't wait, start today. Make the plan, stick with it, and know that you are important and worth taking care of each day.
Today can be the beginning of the rest of your life. All it takes is the courage to start on a journey of self-care.
In the Grip of His Grace,
Dr. Rusty Sieck