I’m not gonna lie, there is a LOT that I LOVE about the whole self-care movement. But there’s a LOT that I HATE too.
*also, disclaimer for parents. There are a couple of things discussed in this article that you may or may not want your kids to read right now. Please be the judge of that for YOUR children right now.
That people are intentionally taking better care of themselves emotionally, mentally, and physically.
Promoting GREAT things like rest, Sabbath, relaxation, doing meaningful work
Eating healthy food, using healthy products (ALL subjects that are near and dear to my heart).
You really cannot pour from an empty cup. If you are run down and burnt out you aren’t much good to anybody else
Sick people have a hard time completing their God given assignments because they feel like poo. Taking good care of yourself is a REALLY good way to help yo-self fulfill your God given destiny
“Put yourself first” is really an anti-Biblical sentiment.
We are to put GOD first, Honor HIM above all else. We are never told to “just do what feels good” in scripture. On the contrary, we are told to live HOLY-even at the expense of our momentary happiness.
“Sometimes what makes you happy is going to RAGE against holiness”- Carl Lentz
· Many self-care rituals involve habits that are unhealthy in the long run
“Retail therapy” spending money that you don’t have/don’t need to spend on stuff to make you “feel better”
Many self-care rituals involve products that are actually BAD for your body and arguably contribute to disease and sickness
The VAST majority of those fizzy bath bombs? Toxic. Nail salons? 99% of them use horribly toxic ingredients. New hair-do just because? Check out the ingredients in all of those products on the EWG’s skin-deep site.
Self-care practices that are just downright unholy
Being unkind just because it makes YOU feel better
I know. Stuff just got REAL deep REAL quick. But here’s the thing. If we DON’T talk about the hard stuff, if we don’t intentionally measure what society tells us against the Word of God, then we will drift far from the heart of God.
So, I urge you to put these two stipulations around all of your own self care practices:
1. Does this honor God and bless others?
2. Does this actually take good care of my soul, or is it a band-aid for a deeper issue that needs resolving?
Allow me to elaborate on how my personal self-care practices all measure up to this:
Takes good care of my physical body, helps me feel better, think better, sleep better. It’s also a good form of self-discipline and putting my flesh in submission.
Using healthy products:
Using chemical laden products has been linked to causing several problems such as hormonal imbalance, brain fog, moodiness, irritably, and some big-name diseases. Instead, when I use healthy personal care product, though they may be more expensive or harder to get, they actually benefit my body in the long run.
Getting enough sleep:
When we sleep our mind and body can rejuvenate. From a spiritual standpoint, stopping the “hustle” to rest is saying that we trust God enough to let Him work on our behalf.
Setting up our home in a way that brings us joy:
There is a lot to be said about our environments. What brings me joy and works for our family, may be very different than yours. Cultivating a life-giving home is something that I have been actively working on the last couple years.
Riding my horse:
Even if I don’t have a barrel race that I am preparing for, riding and exercising my barrel horses just brings peace and joy to my soul in a very unique way.
I truly believe that God gives us all certain passions as a way to refresh our tired weary souls.
Spending time with/talking to life giving friends:
Notice that I specifically said “life giving friends”. Not all friendships are life giving. Some friendships are what I call “pour out” friendships, and that’s ok. But when it comes to taking good care of your heart, dedicating time and attention to those life-giving friendships is crucial. For more on that check out this blog: How to Find Good Friends
Spending extra time in the Word and worship:
I know, it sounds really preachy, but for my soul to be well cared for, I HAVE to spend quality time with my Father. And nothing resets my focus better than spending time in the Word and worship.
While your own self-care practices might look very different from mine, there is a standard they should all be measured against. That standard is the Word of God.
You see, when we do things God’s way, it not only energizes and refreshes us, but it invites His presence into all we do.
So, are you taking care of your spirit, soul, and body in a way that honors God and lines up with His word?
Are you doing the things that God has called you to do; the WAY He called you to do them?
Tell me, what are some of your most refreshing self care practices