Taking care of ourselves intuitively makes sense.
If you don’t eat healthy, exercise, or get enough sleep, you’ll more than likely get sick and/or feel like crap. It’s a pretty simple concept to grasp. However, simple does not necessarily mean easy. In fact, self-care is downright difficult, especially when it asks us to change our #1 widely held belief --
"I don't have time."
What if I told you that the best thing you can do for your company's bottom line is to take care of yourself?
Geez, LaTisha, self-care sounds nice. BUT. I don’t have time for it. I gotta get the kids up and ready for school, get myself ready for work, let the dog out, reply to all of the important emails I received after I went to bed. How am I going to fit in eating healthy? Exercise? Work is crazy right now. I’ve got back to back meetings today. That project isn’t gonna finish itself. I’m gunning for a promotion. More money means that Reese can take karate and Samantha can take ballet. To keep me going, my cup runneth over with coffee. Keep that caffeine coming, honey. I’m hoping that, at lunch, Gail will step out and grab Chic-Fil-A. I can give her some cash and she can get me a #1 with a Cherry Coke. Then I’ve got more meetings before I book it at 6 PM, fight traffic, and pick up the kids at after school before 6:30 PM. I don’t want late fees. Then I’ve got to throw something together for dinner, help the kids with their homework, bathe the kids, say goodnight prayers, and get them in bed at 8:00 PM because they need at least 11 hours of sleep. I’ll hop online for a bit to hammer out the last piece of the model I was updating, send it to the VP for his feedback, and crash around 1 AM. Then it’s wake up and do it all over again. I just don’t have time.
First, stop and take a DEEEEEP breathe. Yes, you’ve got a lot going on. Honor that. Honor how much you accomplish in one day. Sure, you didn’t get to all of the items on your to-do list, but you crossed off at least 90% of it. You go, girl.
Second, I want you to consider that this myth of not having enough time to take care of yourself is seriously impacting your performance at work. The corporate world is all about scaling operations and reaching new heights. I highly doubt you’re going to be able to reach anything if you’re running on E all the time.
Is the work you’re doing really a reflection of all that you’re capable of? Does it really showcase the brilliance that only you possess?
Don’t get me wrong. This is partly not your fault.
We live in a culture that is obsessed with the hustle -- the “I’ll sleep when I’m dead … gotta go hard all day every day … get that money … show em what I’m made of … boss bitch” attitude. We wear our exhaustion like a badge of honor because it shows everyone how important we are. We are so important that the world as we know it would stop if we didn’t make sure the decimals lined up perfectly in our model. Who doesn’t want to feel important? Our busyness makes us feel alive and wanted. We churn out deck after deck, model after model, and it never ends.
It doesn’t help that this type of behavior is applauded at work. “Crank it out. Go, go, go. Productivity rules. Leverage synergies, honey. Leverage them. Keep going.”
When you do what you love, work doesn’t feel like work. When you’re not, work feels like work.
Either way, your self-care will sky rocket your performance. Think about it. When you’ve had a good night’s rest, a healthy breakfast, a quick run, you head into the office clear-headed and all of the irons striking hot (or however you say that). Your sharp mind comes up with creative ideas and you spot grammatical and financial errors with a Bruce Lee quickness..
I get that it’s overwhelming. Adding more onto your already full plate sounds unappetizing AF.
Try this: Start small. Perhaps food prep breakfast on Sunday, so that you eat a healthy breakfast throughout the work week. Or, every hour on the hour, stand up at your desk and do some squats or another type of movement. Carve out time on your schedule just for you and honor it just like you honor a meeting with your boss or your kid’s ballet recital.
You owe it to the family you care for and the company you perform for to take good care of yourself. Self care fuels the world. Imagine what it would be like to work with a team that is well-rested, well-fed, well-exercised, and rejuvenated. I don’t know about you, but where can I find that team?
Most of all, you owe it to yourself. Billy Blanks used to say at the end of his Tae-bo workouts, “Every day above ground is a blessed day.” Our time on earth is limited. Even if we live to be 100 years, that is nothing in the face of eternity.
The body you’ve been given is a blessing -- it is the vehicle thru which you live your life and make your dreams come true. Your soul is a blessing -- you put something so unique and amazing into the world, whether you know it or not. Your mind is a wonder -- no one in the world sees things the way you do. That is the absolute truth.
Let go of the myth of not having enough time. You, as much as anyone or anything else, deserve space on your own to-do list.
Now it’s your turn. Comment below and let me know 1-2 small actions you’re going to commit to over the next 3 weeks to introduce self-care into your life.
I’m cheering for you. Like you’re Beyoncé and you woke up like this.
From the Front Row,