5 Ways {besides a spa vacay} to Take Care of Yourself

We are wrapping up our Family Focus series today. We’ve shared about volleying the serve in our marriages and lavishing love on our kids. Today I am excited to address our need to talk care of ourselves as well. So grab a cup of coffee, find a quiet corner of your house and join me as we ask the Lord to speak to us about how to appropriately focus on self in the midst of our crazy days.



I know what you are thinking. . .I, too didn’t know whether to swoon or curse when I saw this photo. I’d love {almost} more than anything to be there right.this.very.minute. But alas, I am sitting in my kitchen, ignoring piles of laundry while I wait for the baby to wake up at any moment. Yeah, I’m not going here any time soon. But humor me. Imagine for a few minutes that you are there. Laying on that wonderful massage table – the one on the left. And your best friend – she’s on the right. You are both waiting for 90 minutes of complete massage perfection.

Are you still with me? Great. So there you are on the beach, with your BFF. The kids are back home – far, far away – with your husband or perhaps your in-laws. You haven’t a care in the world as you lie there, with tension and stress being rubbed out of every limb. Your biggest concern is whether or not you will be sore that evening as you and your bestie enjoy a decadent dinner on the beach complete with fresh seafood {if you like that sort of thing} and wine {if you like that sort of thing}. Now this is how you take care of yourself.

OK, time to get back to reality. Did you enjoy your little trip? I know I did. Wouldn’t it be amazing to be able to do something like this once a year? A care-free retreat for our body and soul. Perhaps some of you are able to do it. I personally try to do a girls weekend once a year but it’s not usually this luxurious {although, if you are reading BFF’s – and you know who you are – let’s rethink our weekend shopping sprees, k?!}.

Sure, a yearly trip as luxurious as the one we imagined earlier would likely recharge our souls, slough off the dead skin in our lives and energize us to go, go, go for the next 12 months before we could schedule our next spa weekend. But for those of us who do not have the resources to take such extravagant “care” of ourselves, I believe there is another way. This is not one of those posts that tries to convince you that reading the bible every day is like a retreat for your soul, comparable to the aforementioned beach spa trip. That’s just laughable {I believe the Lord knows my heart on this and is not planning now to strike me the next time he sends lightening to earth}.

As God-knowing and God-loving people, we need more than a mere 90 minute massage on the beach to care for ourselves. No, really. We do. As much as you’d like to believe that a vacation, sans kids would do it, it won’t. It would be a temporary fix to an ongoing problem. Now, don’t get me wrong. I completely support and encourage every mom to take a trip like this one. But don’t focus your eyes so firmly on the big event that you miss out on opportunities to care for yourself throughout the rest of the year.

I believe we need cumulative care moms. 24/7. 365. Body and soul. Now, before I go any further, a little disclaimer. I don’t have this all figured out. I’m in the process of learning what this means for me. But I felt led to encourage you as I go through this process to find out what it means for you.

“A heart at peace gives life to the body. . .” Proverbs 14:30

“. . .seek peace and pursue it.” Psalm 34:14

5 Ways I Can Take Constant Care of Myself:

  1. Read. The Bible. A fascinating novel. A challenging theological study. A classic piece of literature. Whatever will get your brain going and feed your soul on a regular basis, read it. {Although it’s not the only thing we can read, I believe the Bible is the most important thing we can read to take care of ourselves.}
  2. Write. Keep a journal or blog. Write poetry, a song or short story. Anything that puts pen to paper {and I believe real paper does the heart good} to express yourself. Get it out. Get it all out. Bottled up emotion, frustration or even creativity will wreak havoc on your soul.
  3. Eat. For some this might mean eating better, most of the time. For others it might mean cheating every now and then. Eat often for health and sometimes for pleasure as you seek to find the balance you need in your life.
  4. Move. We all know this is true. So this is merely a reminder for me and for you. Find a way to do something everyday that takes care of your temple. If you workout regularly, I’m sure you can attest to how much it helps you find balance for your self. Put on your favorite music and dance around with your kids. Even if you simply sit, stretch and do breathing exercises for 5 minutes every morning, it will do wonders for your body and soul.
  5. Go. Whether it’s a yearly girls trip, a monthly girl’s night out or a weekly coffee shop retreat, you need time for YOU. Do them all for heaven’s sake. Sometimes go by yourself. Sometimes go with girlfriends. As long as your company does not require you to take them to the potty, going and doing will excite and energize you.

How about you? What ways have you found to take care of yourself on a regular basis?

{Photo courtesy of Creative Commons}

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