Couples Counseling Articles

Are You Practicing Radical Self-Care?

Last week I met up with a friend and mentioned I was having a ‘Barbara Anne Day’. She was confused so I explained:

Barbara Anne is my full name — AND — I set aside one Saturday a month for a Barbara Anne Day. That’s when I turn my kindness floodlight inward, slow way down and practice 24 hours of Radical Self-Care.

For example, I don’t power-walk that morning; I stroll…and sometimes take my coffee with me.

I schedule down – time and nurturing appointments; a massage, coffee-talk or lunch with a friend or date night with my husband. But mostly, I luxuriate in the act of breathing and being taken care of.

You might say every day should be a Self-Care day but I see it differently. I think most days we humans spend our time taking care of each other. And, there are so many things happening in life and in the world that we forget to take care of ourselves.

The way I see it, setting aside time for Radical Self-Care is essential and I advocate starting right now.

So, I’ve outlined 4 Steps and 10 Ideas to help you get started. I invite you to plan your Radical Self-Care Day.

Step 1
Get Support – Maybe you want your partner to join you ORYoung couple maybe you’ll need your partner’s help. Either way, be sure your partner, kids and other family members are on board and totally support you. With love – let them know what you’re doing and why. Ask for their involvement and their help. Remember, you’re not asking for permission; you’re asking for engagement and support.

Step 2
Plan It – Organizing a Self-Care day takes a little effort but the pay-off can be huge. Batch appointments together and make them geographically easy so you’re not driving all over town. If you have several appointments and lunch with a friend, ask your friend to come to you. (Then be sure to return the favor!)

Step 3
Book It – Schedule your Self-Care in advance; six months out isn’t unreasonable. These activities need to be on your calendar just like dental and medical appointments. Nurturing, fulfilling, soul gratifying activities only, please. No errands. Some activities will cost money, others will be free but they’re all important. These are promises you are making to yourself — so put them on your calendar in bold, bright letters.

Step 4
Enjoy Without Guilt – Practicing Radical Self-Care means taking a break from the pace of everyday life. You’re conserving and re-energizing by nurturing and cultivating your precious and awesome Self. These activities must be good for you AND for the people around you. Make sure every activity is positive, enriching and power-full. Above all else, ENJOY every minute – guilt free.

Here are 10 more ideas to help get you started on a day of Radical-Self-Care.

  1. Experience vastness. Fly a model plane or a kite in an open field.
  2. Do nothing. Sit on a porch step. Sip tea.
  3. Explore. Take a leisurely walk in someone else’s neighborhood.
  4. Laugh. Go bowling with someone you love.
  5. Create. Buy watercolors and paint.
  6. Tell a story. Write the first chapter of your memoir. You matter.
  7. Meditate. Let a miracle find you. (They’re everywhere!)
  8. Untangle your nerves. Take a mid-day nap in a healing place.
  9. Indulge. Buy yourself flowers or a box of cigars (if you’re a guy).
  10. Break the Rules. Eat chocolate chip cookie dough for dinner. Just be sure to drink lots of water the next day!

Go ahead. Offer up 10 of your own Radical Self-Care Day ideas and please share them with us. I look forward to hearing from you.


© 2013 Wellness Counseling Center PC