Self-Care: A Revolutionary Act

Self-Care for BIPOC women

Photo by Jackson David on Unsplash

Self-Preservation

Self-care for women, and BIPOC women in particular, can be difficult in a society that does not support our health and wellbeing. Poet and activist Audre Lorde presented the idea of revolutionary self-care for Black women decades ago. She states that caring for yourself “…is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation…” Finding self-care spaces that are welcoming for us can be challenging. Being happy and healthy in a world that often undermines our mental, emotional, and physical wellness is an act of self-preservation and can be extremely empowering. 

Revolutionary Self-Care

Revolutionary self-care is more than massages and bubble baths. These activities are wonderful and certainly nurturing. I would also encourage us to think of self-care from a broad perspective. Consider creating a life that nurtures your happiness and wellbeing. Here are some questions to think about when including revolutionary self-care into your life.

  • Boundaries
    Are you setting appropriate boundaries with regards to your time and energy? Do you ignore your impulse to say no to sometimes? Do you feel resentful, overwhelmed and/or tired because of this?
  • Basic Needs
    Are you giving yourself what you need when you need it? Do you rest when you are tired, eating when you are hungry, etc? Or are you ignoring your needs?
  • Create Nurturing Spaces
    Do you enjoy spending time in your personal and professional spaces? Are there things in your environment that make you feel happy, calm, inspired, and invigorated?
  • Managing Overwhelm
    Are you feeling overwhelmed? Are you making yourself a priority so that you have the energy and mental capacity to be present in your profession, with your family, in your relationships and other areas that of life that you feel are important to you?

Your Plan

These and many other questions can be useful to consider when creating a life that incorporates revolutionary self-care. Feel free to contact me for a complimentary 15 minute video call consultation to learn more about how I can help you implement your revolutionary self-care plan!

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Peace and Joy for Busy BIPOC Women

Breathe and Smile

As BIPOC women, we  face many stressors in our daily lives. With challenges like micro-aggressions and systemic barriers that challenge our self-esteem and happiness, it can be difficult to find peace and joy. This simple and easy exercise can help us to find calm and peace in the moment. 

In his book, Peace is Every Step, Thich Nhat Hanh recommends conscious breathing to keep you in the present moment and calm your body and mind. This simple technique only takes a few moments to complete. Simply recite to yourself:

Breathing in I calm my body (breathe in)
Breathing out I smile. (breathe out)
Dwelling in the present moment, (Breathe in)
I know this is a wonderful moment. (Breathe out)

If you can’t remember that, simply say to yourself:
“Calming, Smiling, Present Moment, Wonderful Moment”

If you can’t remember that, just remember to recite to yourself:
“breathe and smile” as you slowly breathe in and out.

Regardless of the version you choose, be conscious of your breath and your smile. Take slow and deep belly breaths to calm your body and signal the mind to relax. An easy and gentle smile relaxes the muscles in your face, helping to relieve tension in your forehead and jaw.

Give this simple technique a try to see if it works for you! Thanks for reading!

 

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