Josie Bicknelle - Apr 05 2023

Is self care bullshit?

Ithink that ‘self care’ is a phrase that people tend to throw around a lot, often very flippantly, without actually knowing what it means. Let’s look up the definition, shall we?

‘The practice of taking an active role in protecting one's own well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress.’

I find it interesting that it says, ‘taking an active role’, but doesn’t actually tell you what that role is. Does taking an active role mean reading a book, or having a bath, or doing yoga, or going to therapy, or what?

In recent years ‘self care’ has become a whole industry of its own; a whole horde of influencers on TikTok making you feel guilty for not meditating once a day, or not drinking a green smoothie for breakfast.

I think the idea that ‘self care’ has to be all of these time consuming, oftentimes expensive things, is ludicrous.

All it is is a way for brands and influencers to sell you their lifestyle; to make money from you supporting their skincare brand deals, or their fast fashion loungewear companies. They’ll be gifted a trip away to some fancy spa retreat, and gush to you about how ‘self care is so important guys, follow the link in my bio and use this special code to pay my rent for me’.

I’m not trying to say that green smoothies and meditation and going on hikes every morning aren’t good for you - they are. They’re just not realistic for everyone. I think it’s easy to forget that these influencers you see on social media eating acai bowls every day, and doing two hours of yoga in the middle of the afternoon, get paid to do so. Being unemployed is literally their whole job.

Never feel bad about not being able to live the lifestyle that these people are flaunting.

You cannot realistically work full time, have a social life, and follow the same pattern of life that these people are, and that’s okay.

Despite this whole ramble, self care is still definitely important - it’s certainly crucial to my everyday life. And when I say ‘self care’, I do not mean spending money on face misters and expensive body butters to make my life better - I mean I am literally taking care of myself.

As you probably know (or would assume), I work full time for Hoadys. This inevitably means that I find myself feeling like I'm running out of time. A lot.

I also happen to be somebody who, on a daily basis, is prone to becoming overstimulated, anxious and burnt out. I need time at the end of each day to be alone, recharge and rejuvenate my brain so that I can function properly the following day.

This is usually a warm bubble bath in the evening, with some Hoadys candles lit and an episode of whatever I’m currently bingeing on Netflix. At the moment, it’s ‘Shadow and Bone’. I also journal sometimes in the evenings, whenever I get the chance to. It can also be an hour and a half of switching my brain off and playing some Animal Crossing.

Having this time to myself in the evening is my form of self care, but it can be different for everyone.

Please hear me when I say this - do whatever works for you, and do not ever feel guilty or lesser than for not following somebody else’s routine.

Life can be incredibly busy, and strenuous, and it’s okay if you miss a week of taking care of yourself and your brain. There’s no need to worry, you’ll always have time to catch up. Anyone who makes you feel bad about just trying your best, can fuck off.

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