Since the moment my younger sister was born, I began to learn what the importance of being the responsible older sister was. I was given the responsibility to look after her during our play times and set a good example with my behaviour.
This sense of responsibility and considering what would be best for others only became a more prominent factor in my decision making and overall demeanour as time went on. Being the oldest out of my siblings and cousins and having worked as a nanny for 8+ years - I became very good at looking after others and I became a revered “substitute parent.”
But this is a role that I both revere and recoil from. While my innate nurturing spirit is a quality that I'm very proud to possess, it's also the cause of many problems.
Constantly thinking about others and what I need to do or should be doing for them, has often made me discard what I need to do or should be doing for myself. Simply put: continuously prioritising others needs above my own has often had damaging effects to my well-being.
My energy becomes depleted and it sends a bad message to myself - that my needs don't matter.
But they DO matter! I need to be taken care of too, and if I don't take care of myself, then how am I supposed to be able to take care of others?
Experimenting with different ways of treating myself to some good and much needed self-care, I learned that one of the best ways for me to treat myself is by meditating. Meditation has become a highly effective way for me to feel full and balanced.
Even if I've fallen off the wagon and want to get back on track – a 10-15-minute meditation does the trick. It resets my well-being, much like resetting my alarm to wake up for a productive day ahead.
Now, my family knows that if they see me in a cross-legged position, with my hands resting on my knees and my eyes closed to not to disturb me. It’s 'me time.’ The only exception to this is my dog who doesn't really understand the concept of humans needing some 'me time’ (but she gets a pass since she’s a source of constant joy and unconditional love). For those 10 minutes, I have no obligations to anyone but myself.
Taking this time out of my day to do something for myself, lets me know that I, my needs, and my well-being matter too. I'm making these things a priority and that they're a necessity for me to be happy and healthy. Especially if I want to help others be happy and healthy too.
By: Ella Capek
I’m a British-Israeli in my early 20’s who’s studying to become a music therapist. On the side, I write on my blog Wide-Eyed Wanderer, where I’ve been sharing my travel experiences for 3 years. My hope is to continue doing everything that I love in the realms of music, writing & travel, while also consuming as much green tea and brownies as possible.
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