Inner Workout's definition of self-care is listening within and responding in the most loving way possible. Self-care is often discussed as something you do when you're already burned out and overwhelmed. A quick fix. Taking bubble baths, going on vacations, spending money on a new wardrobe...these are all great things to do for yourself. But what do you do when the bath is over, you've taken the trip and worn the clothes?
On this episode of Inner Warmup, we're talking about filling your life with care. Taking the time to sit with yourself and ask "how are you REALLY doing?" Doing the work to implement self-care into your daily life because you want to, not because you have to.
Mentioned In The Episode
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Welcome back to Inner Warmup where your inner work begins. My name is Taylor Elyse Morrison, creator of Inner Workout, and you as always are our expert guest. Thanks for being here. We are entering a new month and this month, I wanted to get back to the basics, when it comes to self care. Yes, Inner Workout is a self care company. Yes, this podcast talks about self-care, and inner work. And I think it's always worth it to go back to the basics and honestly, I needed to go back to the basics for myself. And so I hope that you'll come along with me this month.
To have a really nice starting point, I probably should share the definition of self-care that I use, and that Inner Workout uses which is that self-care is listening within and responding in the most loving way possible. It's listening within, it's responding with love. Self-care, the way I've thought about it for the past five years, isn't this compartmentalized thing that you only do on Sundays, or you have to earn by crossing everything off of your to do list. Self-care is a conversation that you're having where you're listening, you're turning that gaze inwards and saying, “Hey, what's going on? What do you need right now?” And then once you hear that, you're finding a way to provide what it is that you need, from a place of love and not a place of obligation.
And one thing I appreciate about talking about self-care in this way is it moves self-care from being this escape, this thing you do to get out of your life and transitions it into you having a care filled life. Your life is so full of moments of care, of self care and community care that, sure you can enjoy a vacation. But you don't need to run away, you don't need to get away from your life, because it's so infused with care.
And especially at the beginning of my self care journey, I had a lot of stops and starts because I was treating self-care, like this escape, like this thing that I could do for three minutes, 30 minutes, three hours, and expecting it to change my life. When the way it's structured my life didn't have much Karen didn't have much care for myself certainly, and sometimes didn't have care for others either.
And I could position the story so that it's like that was then and now I have everything figured out. I run the self-care company, of course my life is filled with care. But if I'm being honest, the question that we're talking about today is, is your life filled with care? Is your life care filled?
If you would have asked me that a month ago, if I was being honest, I'd have to say no.
I was coming off of my book deadline and I had other commitments and life just felt really full and not in this way where it was full and abundant and rich and I was enjoying all of it. It felt really full, like I had to have my head down and be really focused. And I tried to bring as much care into the situation as possible but I still couldn't say that my life was care filled. I was still feeling a lot of anxiety, I was still feeling a lot of uncertainty. I wasn't feeling a lot of joy either, honestly. And so I took a lot of the past month to tweak things and say okay, I am not feeling cared for in my life. As a default or as a general rule, I need to switch some things up. What needs to change here?
And for me, when I asked myself that question, okay, is your life care filled? The answer was no. And I thought about what needed to change. One of the first things for me was my mornings. I was literally starting my day off on the wrong foot. I know what makes me feel cared for, supported, and energized in my mornings. And I was not consistently doing any of those things. And for me, it's not about how long I do each element of my morning ritual but it's not there there. And so what I did is I wrote down what are the things that make me feel cared for in the morning, and I made myself a checklist. And I try, operative word being try, because this is still a work in progress. But I try in my mornings to go through these things in some measure. Sometimes I'm doing something for two minutes one day and 30 minutes the next day, but I'm really trying to do the things like moving my body, having time to reflect, practicing presence and trying to do those in the morning, showing myself that I'm a priority.
And that these things are prioritized in my life, before I move into my workday. And it's made me feel a lot more cared for.
Another thing that I had to do is reset the expectations that I had for myself and say, okay, what do I actually need to get done in a week, in a month, in a day?
What are the things that if I go to bed, not having done them, I'm going to feel a little bit of regret about?
And what are the things that if they don't get done, they don't get done.
And the answers to those things surprised me. So I did some shifting, and I gave myself more grace in some spaces. And I lovingly held myself accountable in other ways and overall, my life feels so much brighter than it did even this time last month. What's happened for me through this process of tweaking and shifting and moving some things around, doing some spring cleaning of sorts, is that it has allowed so many things, even things that I used to not be super excited about, like cleaning my home to become an active care. Like I love the place I live in a way that I have never loved it before. I'm caring for it in a way that I've never cared for it before. Just because I had a conversation with myself about what would make me feel cared for, about what was important to me, about what I needed in this moment, in the season of my life.
And another thing that has been a support is in the group chat, in the Inner Working Group Chat, the full name, it's government name. Every week we check in, we have an accountability thread, and so I've been setting intentions for things like I want to see beauty. And then that week, I would look up and see a bird or I'd stop and listen to chirping or see something beautiful and pause to enjoy it because I created that accountability and I had that accountability to see beauty. I know this is going to be a busier week, so I'm committing to move more slowly than I think. I need to give myself more time and space than I think I need to. So having the group chat and having that accountability built in has been incredibly useful as I navigate what it looks like for me to have a care filled life right now.
So I know that the question is your life care filled is a yes or no question. So answer it, be honest, and then follow it up with a why, why or why not? Why did you choose that answer? And my hope is that for you like it has been for me, this is a starting point. Where over the next month, you'll be able to shift and change so that you can feel this pervasive, this expansive sense of care in your life. So that self-care isn't the thing that you do to run away from your life but your life has care woven into the moments of your day. That's my hope for you. So I'll hand the mic your way.
Is your life care filled? Why or why not?
Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. We always love to hear from you on social media and if you want to have more of a back and forth, come join us in the group chat. We would love to have you. Thanks for your time and thanks as always for your expertise. Take care!