evergreen self-care


credit – lisa a mccrohan

I love the concept of ‘evergreen’ content. Probably because I live among perennials – concepts as well as plants.

Take self-care, for instance. This entire blog is about self-care: staying present to life; appreciating/sharing beauty; protecting the fragile; midwifing empowerment; finding humor and humility in small things; becoming …

This morning I came across a piece of evergreen content written a full year back on Everyday Feminism – about self-care. In keeping with my Wednesday posting theme of ‘wise words,’ I share excerpts below, with credit and thanks to Sarah Ogden, who writes :

… The world is an especially exhausting place for those of us who work to fix it, for those of us who strive to live kindly and consciously. … – when you give a piece of yourself to someone or something else, you have to replace it with something new.

…The point of self care isn’t to try cookie-cutter techniques … but to really explore what it is that we need and to find ways to provide ourselves with the fuel that we require and deserve in order to do this work of existing.

…How can we act in meaningful ways to take care of ourselves to make our important work more sustainable?

1. Acknowledge That Things Are Hard

There is incredible power in nam[ing] your experience. Not only is it validating to hear your own voice claim what exists in your bones, it is also important for those around you to be aware of what you’re going through.

2. Ask For Help

When we can identify our needs and ask another person to help us meet these needs, we work to build intentional community around the concept that we are all connected and moving through this work and earth together.

3. Accept Vulnerability

… the reality is that vulnerability is actually a strength – it is a reminder that we are real and authentically ourselves. It reminds us that we are very much alive and that we are doing the work that we need to do to make this world what it should and can be.

4. Cultivate a Routine that Involves Both Rest and Play

… Whatever rest looks like for you, find a way to include it in each day. The same goes for play. Whether you play soccer on a team or a card game with your neighbor, find a way to play.

5. Do What Is True To You

Talk about what matters to you. Write about what you think is most important. Act in ways that feel the most authentic to who you are and who you want to be. … When we reject others’ expectations and make choices about our actions (professional, volunteer, recreational, whatever!) that are in accordance with our own deepest values and goals, we make the world and ourselves more whole.

What are your favorite forms of self-care? Do they depend on what’s going on around you? Or are there some things that are part of every day no matter what?


credit - nevena uzurov

credit – nevena uzurov

Today’s WordPress Daily Post challenge: what decision would you make differently if you could go back …

Since my recent visit with my sister (see ‘very present,’) I have been thinking – a lot – about presence.

Two days after my return to icy, unpredictable-but-clearly-treacherously-winter Vermont, I followed a casual impulse to walk in the woods.  A few days later, shattered elbow rewired and writing mobility significantly curtailed, I wished I could go back and act on the small voice that told me not to go without my micro-spikes.

And yet… I could have fallen anywhere. It just happened to be the farthest point in early morning deserted woods on thick unrelenting ice. Even wearing those intimidating and confidence-inspiring spikes, I might have gone down. Even in company, I could have landed hard on that one bone that took the fall for the rest of me.

I can tell you exactly what was on my mind when I slipped because in that moment I was not entirely present to the walking-with-care which required my undivided attention. I had even shifted from enjoying the beauty of the quiet early morning snowfall which drew me in to start with.

Here’s what I know of presence. It leads to a fuller and richer experience as both giver and receiver. True presence is unmitigated by expectation or judgment. It is a pure opening to the moment. Whether that moment be the enveloping silence of soft mid-winter snow nestling among hemlocks, or the wrenching shock of indescribable pain. We need to embrace it all as it unfolds in our lives. This is how we grow into compassion for ourselves and one another.

These past few days I have experienced the connective and healing qualities of presence – within, certainly, but also between people. Witnessing/being witnessed through present-moments. Truly seeing one another without pretense. The absolute stripping down to what matters. Present moments. Perhaps after all I wouldn’t want to go back and re-do my hasty decision. In the aftermath of my fall, I have come to re-set my own experience of presence.



credit - swb

credit – swb

Insecure people have to make excuses and put others down to feel confident. Confidence isn’t walking into a room with your nose in the air, and thinking you are better than everyone else, it’s walking into a room and not having to compare yourself to anyone in the first place. | Unknown |