Recently I shared a post on the concept of self-care. In my opinion, I do not believe taking time to practice self-care is a selfish idea. Personally, I view self-care as a preventative healthcare measure. Instead of waiting for a crisis to occur why not actively practice ways to stay healthy in all areas of your life?
In the blog 10 Ways to Treat Your Body with Respect, I discussed why
- self care is an expression of self respect
- the importance of taking time to balance oneself out in mind, body and spirit, and
- ways you can get into take time for yourself
After thinking about it for awhile, I decided too share some of the things I personally do to practice self-care and self-respect with you all.
As I sat down to pen my list, I realized that actions without understanding the intent behind it should also be discussed. So instead of just giving you my self-care list, I thought I'd share what my personal BELIEFS are on the topic.
If you were to define how I live and view my life, you could say that I am an "everything is a miracle" person. The quote by Albert Einstein really describes me well:
"There are only two ways to live your life.
One is as though nothing is a miracle.
The other is as though everything is a miracle."
~ Albert Einstein
I love that quote! When it comes to the human body, I truly believe it is a working miracle. Experiencing conception and child-birth for the first time, and working as a chronic muscle and joint pain relief specialist has only cemented that belief even more firmly in my mind.
I've always been fascinated with the human body and movement. I have multiple degrees, certifications and years of practical experience to show for it. I've memorized the scientific Laws of Physical Health, had the privilege of studying human cadaver anatomy and pain relief protocols with some of the most brilliant minds in the world.
The joy I feel watching my clients make positive changes in mind, action and habits to successfully overcome what seemed impossible never gets old for me.
I don't need any convincing at all that the body is a miraculous thing because I get to see the miraculous happen everyday. I know that I know, that the body has a specific design, function and order, and it must adhere to that design to perform optimally.
Not only do I view it as miraculous, but for me, as both a Corrective Exercise Specialist, and practicing Christian, I also believe I've been given clear instructions about how I should care for my body.
One of my favorite scriptures comes from 1 Corinthians 6:19-20. The verse talks about how the human body is analogous to a "temple" that belongs to and represents God. I believe how you treat and care for your body is an act of worship and reflection of your relationship with God.
The theme of the body as a temple exists across religions, cultures, self-help and science throughout history and time.
Here's some other favorite quotes of mine that reflect the idea of your body being a temple:
- Take care of your body. It's the only place you have to live. ~ Jim Rohn
- To keep the body in good health is a duty... otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear. ~ Buddha
- The body is your temple. Keep it pure and clean for the soul to reside in. ~ B.K.S. Iyengar, Yoga
- The body never lies. ~Martha Graham
- Attention to the human body brings healing and regeneration. Through awareness of the body we remember who we really are. ~ Jack Kornfield
- Exercise, play, move. Stretch, feel, reach, sweat. Skip, dance, hug! Use the body God gave you, don't let it rot. ~ Terri Guillemets
I truly believe that I must treat my body it with the honor and respect it deserves in every aspect that it operates (mind, body and spirit). And for that reason I engage in the following self-care practices.
10 Ways How I Treat My Body with Respect
Here is my top ten list of things I actively do to treat my body with respect. I
- Remain a student and take 4-5 CrossFit classes/week
- Practice self-myofascial release
- Follow a Whole9 dietary lifestyle
- Teach and participate in yoga for athletes, mobility and corrective exercise
- Take Epsom Salt baths
- Go for Acupuncture, massage and pedicure appointments every 2-3 months
- Actively rest (my personal rule is that if I don't get at least 7 hours of sleep I don't train that day)
- Give myself permission to take an additional rest day or relax my nutrition as needed.
- Drink tons of water. My goal is to consume 96 ounces per day.
- Continually work on my spiritual life by working on letting offenses go, practicing forgiveness, addressing past feelings of rejection and hurt. This includes reading my bible regularly, doing SOAP, participating in Faith RX'd and being active in my church community.
What about you?
- What is your personal belief about your body?
- How do you treat your body?
- Is your body something you regard with great respect?
- Are you waiting for a crisis before making a change? If so, WHY?
Maybe you've never thought about it before? Honestly, is it something you take for granted? How do you treat your body in mind, action and habit?
As I go through life, I know that my body will go through the natural progression of aging. However, it is my every intention to do my best to enjoy a pain free life and living throughout my life span.
What does that mean to me? At it's simplest, it's an easy math equation.
Garbage in = Garbage out.
Good stuff in = Good stuff out.
I know that my body is the direct product of the choices I've made over my lifetime. How I think, what I weigh, how I physically perform are all the direct results of the stimulus and demand of what I put into it. The responsibility for those choices is mine alone, and so are the rewards.
Possible the best and worst thing about being a human being is that we all have free choice.
Because of that I choose to take RESPONSIBILITY for my life. I believe I get to choose how I treat my body through my thoughts, actions and habits. So I choose to RESPECT it. In doing so, I honor the body I've been given and will reap the rewards of sowing good seed like self-care.
You can spin it anyway you want, but as a person who is dedicated to help others change, it's a freedom that I hold near and dear.
Don't like the results in your life?
No problem. Make a change.
You GET to CHOOSE!
Change is always available to us. Not feeling good inside your skin? Maybe you have to ask yourself if you've been treating your body with the respect it deserves. You only have one body, and you get to choose what you do with it.
So this blog really can be directly correlated to eliminating chronic musculoskeletal pain, as easily as it can be to losing weight, accomplishing a goal, or changing your mindset or beliefs about yourself.
Do you sincerely seek to improve the overall quality of your life and your health? You don't have to wait!
You can start today by treating your body with the respect it deserves. Begin by making the kind of wise choices that will lead to a longer, healthier, happier life.
I know you can do it! Do you have questions? Please reach out! Remember, we're in this together, and I am here to help!
Stock Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com
Head Photo Credit: Melissa Thome Photography
Author: Deb Preachuk is a Certified Foundation Training & STOTT Pilates Instructor, Corrective Exercise & Posture Alignment Specialist, and the founder/owner of Pain Free Posture MN. You can follow Deb on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn, or subscribe to her YouTube, Pinterest or Instagram pages.