The Hard Truth About Self-Care: It Isn’t Easy

Today’s post is by a special guest, Andrea Johnson Beck, author and mental health advocate. 

Self-care, Wellness, Mental health

Photo by johnhain via Pixabay

Last week I read a social media post from a “life coach” stating self-care is easy, and if people didn’t do it, they didn’t have a right to complain. I don’t know about you, but the statement comes off callous.

Self-care is hard

It goes beyond bubble baths and retail therapy. More than pilates and cycle class. Though those things are great, the mental state attached to self-care is the priority.

Guilt.

Anxiety.

Depression.

To be a woman, a mother, a wife, a daughter, work outside the home or stay at home. Providing care for others. Single. Married. It’s complicated. Finding the balance is difficult. It’s a battle within.

The Struggle Is Real

Those vulnerable places become exposed, or a complete shutdown ensues. I’m the latter. Isolating is easy. I believe it’s the right thing to do because I don’t want to put my stresses on anyone else. I don’t want others to worry, especially my husband and son. But I’ve learned walking the wellness journey alone isn’t the right path. Yes, self-care is just that, self, but we need people. We need support, encouragement, love, and affection. When we veer from the path, we need guidance, not judgment. We are aware of our missteps.

Self-care, Wellness Plan, Mental Health

Photo by AnnieSpratt via Pixabay

What Is It All About?

Self-care is embracing and loving every square inch of ourselves. It's happiness without guilt. Click To TweetIt’s laughing without regret. It’s throat punching fear. It’s looking at yourself without shame or remorse.

Self-care is letting go of the crap. The toxic people in your life. Saying no to the PTA fundraiser. It’s living a life you don’t want to run away from.

Like I said self-care is hard.

It’s not black or white.

We aren’t weak. We aren’t broken. We are human.

Conclusion

We all self-care differently and that’s okay. But know you aren’t alone. If someone tells you self-care is a natural process that person is lying. Or in complete denial. Click To Tweet

Setbacks and struggles will happen, but the focus should be elsewhere. How did you react? What emotions were in play? Did you immediately blame yourself? What are the solutions?

It’s easy to get lost in the shadows. Don’t. You can find your way out of the darkness.

The journey isn’t over.

You are not alone.

You are awesome.

You are loved.

Self-care, Wellness Plan, Mental health

Photo by Bru-nO via Pixabay

Nicole here. Show Andrea some love in the comments section. Have you struggled with self-care? What makes it hard? What makes it easier? 

Andrea Johnson Beck was born in Sioux City, Iowa. From a young age, she enjoyed telling stories. Many her dad recorded. Writing was her creative outlet, and at 10-years-old, her first poem was published in an anthology. Always curious, Andrea read and watched what was considered risqué in the 80’s and early 90’s, such as, books by VC Andrews. Dirty Dancing and Top Gun (snuck downstairs) raised questions and were brought to her parents for clarification. Understanding their daughter’s need for answers, they always replied truthfully.

Her curiosity and rebellious disposition carried on. Andrea credits the strong woman in her life who guided her through difficult times. That and writing. Blogging about her marriage, her quirky son, and homeschooling helped her connect with others around the world.

In 2012, Andrea self-published her debut novel, Deadly Deception. A year later, the book was acquired by Montlake Romance and re-released in October of 2013. Deadly Deception hit #4 on the Amazon Best Seller List in overall paid fiction in the Kindle Store; it was right behind the Divergent Trilogy. Her second novel, Deadly Revelation, released April of 2014 and was #1 in Organized Crime and Crime Fiction and continues to hold a spot in those categories.

Andrea and her son collaborated and released a short story, Hush, Mary in October of 2014. Also, the mom and son duo are writing homeschool and autism spectrum books together. Over the years, Logan has impacted and inspired many with his own stories of how he accepted and embraced his quirkiness.

Andrea lives in Florida with her husband Phil, son, and their little monster Chihuahua, Edgar. Sarcasm is the oxygen they breathe, as is love and humor.

Find her at therusticwoman.com

2 Comments

  1. Self-care *is* hard. I hide from myself as much if not more than I hide from the world. Literally burying myself beneath the covers on my bed and sleeping to avoid the pain — physical, mental, and emotional.
    I’m determined this year to crawl out of my hole. (I made one, truly!) I’m going to eat better, take walks, do yoga, and be around and with people more.
    I cut myself off from people when the ones who were supposed to support me most turned their backs on me. Became a recluse. And you know you’re a recluse when you go three months without putting gas in your car after filling up and still have a quarter tank! But I *need* people. I crave human compsnionship. Human touch, too. And studies have proven we aren’t meant to be solitary creatures. I’m extremely affectionate. Family-oriented. While my blood family may have cut me out, I need to seek others who’ll fill the role and give me the unconditional love I give in return.
    Don’t get me wrong. I actually have a boatload of very supportive friends, including Andrea! — who all live hundreds, thousands of miles away. Even some on the other side of the planet! And I love each and every one of them. But only seeing them once a year or once every several years makes it very hard to get those hugs that fulfill the need for physical human touch.
    So, my mission is to try to make at least one local friend; someone I can see frequently and hang with. It’s hard when you’re 43, single, and a progressive-liberal in a county that’s mostly older, married people and 70% Republican. But I’m determined!
    Andrea, you’re my joy. You make me smile every day, you and your family, and I love you as if you were *my* family. Don’t ever change. Because you’re beautiful, inside, just the way you are. <3

    • nmackeywriter@gmail.com

      Candice, thank you so much for coming by and for your thoughtful response. If there is any way we can help, let us know. Also, check out MeetUp.com and see if they are in your area. Not for dating, just for finding like-minded people with similar interests. I found a knitting group.

      Peace,
      Nicole

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