By. Rachel Troob, Psychology Intern
This year I am taking on the dual role of a full time student and a part time employee at Dr. Nerenberg Psychology Associates. As excited and eager as I am, this is a good time to take a step back and reflect on the ways I am going to care for myself.
The purpose of this blog post is to provide a refresher on self-care and open a discussion around implementing self-care in your own lives. As summer ends, evaluating our self-care plan is a great way to start the new school and work year.
I often hear the term “self-care” in my field of work. As therapists, it is our job to check on and work with our clients to put self-care first. We try to make sure that clients are taking care of themselves and finding a healthy work-life balance. The act of coming to therapy is one of the most crucial aspects of self-care! However, sometimes self-care plans are unrealistic. Maybe finding an hour of alone time a day is impossible. Or exercising for the recommended 150 minutes a week is unobtainable.
So, how do we implement a realistic self-care plan? I think that the main goal of a self-care plan should be that it is doable. Although a recommended self-care plan includes making healthy food choices, getting adequate sleep, and exercising, I believe that the first step to creating a successful self-care plan is to evaluate what makes you happy and gives you energy. With limited time in the day, I believe it is crucial to use the little time we have to do something for ourselves.
I evaluated what gives me energy and made a list:
- Sleeping past 9:30 am
- Facetiming my friends
These are all examples of small activities that bring me joy. These are also activities that can be easily implemented into my day.
I then took this list and made self-care goals for each week:
- Do yoga twice a week
- Sleep past 9:30 am on Saturdays and Sundays
- Call one friend a week and check in
I expect to have to adjust my self-care plan as I get back into the school and work year; however, the tasks I picked seem doable to me. As long as I loosely stick to my plan, I know that these activities will keep me grounded and bring me joy when I need it most.