Healthy relationships start with a focus on self-care and well-being. That is the philosophy I shared with Voorhees College students during a visit to their campus. When I asked the question, “What is most important to you in your relationships?” I received answers like trust, communication, love and respect. The idea of practicing self-care as a foundation for healthy relationships appeared to be a new paradigm for them. I can understand, though, because several years ago, it became a new paradigm for me as well. Through my own learning experiences, I have concluded that taking care of me is critical to the health of my relationships with others. And “taking care of me” includes my mental, emotional, physical and spiritual well-being.
When a person has a solid foundation of self-care and well-being, she brings that ritual into her relationships with others. And when she has not firmly established a self care “ritual,” she will experience tremendous potential for unhealthy relationships.
So, what exactly does it mean to practice self care?
Self care is the daily practice of choosing experiences that cultivate, restore, and strengthen one’s body, mind and heart. It is crucial that one does not limit her practice to just “grooming.” Some examples of grooming include getting haircuts, manicures and pedicures. This is a focus on physical appearance. Self care is the practice of focusing on physical (external) as well as mental, emotional and spiritual (internal) aspects of ourselves. Some examples of internal self care include deep breathing, journaling, practicing forgiveness and engaging in activities that are fun.
What’s the link between self care and healthy relationships?
The practice of self care helps one to understand her body, emotions, thoughts, needs and wants. Through self care, one establishes self-connection, greater self-awareness, self-trust, self-direction and self-love. And once this foundation is in place, it is a platform for assisting us in our day-to-day interactions within relationships. There’s no doubt about it, upsets and miscommunication will occur in relationships. However, with a healthy foundation of self care, we have the emotional resilience to work through them and create healthier outcomes for all involved. Healthy relationships start with a focus on self-care and well-being.
Begin practicing self care today and notice just how much your relationships with roommates, professors, your intimate partner, friends and family members grow in a healthier direction! Today, begin to live a Growth in Motion™ lifestyle!
Growth in Motion™!! = Self Care + Self Empowerment + Self Knowledge + Self Direction
Take Care of Yourself,
“Living a Growth in Motion™!! Lifestyle”