I decided this last summer to take a summer break of sorts from my quilty things, so I could be more present with my boys. It also gave me some time to mentally and physically rest from a busy spring where I had not been caring for myself as I should have.
Self-care is mandatory for everyone, REALLY. I love using the bucket analogy when explaining self-care…
We each are like a bucket with a couple holes in the bottom from where water (aka our energy) drains. Usually, we have small holes in our bucket, but occasionally something big will drain our buckets through a big hole, like a big fight with a loved one or other emotionally taxing event. The small holes come from normal day to day activities and interactions with those around us. The hole size is additionally affected by what we eat, how much sleep we’re getting, any movement we squeeze in, and how we take time for ourselves. The better we eat, sleep, move, and care for ourselves the smaller the holes are or become.
Why is the hole size important you ask? Well, because as we go through our day our bucket slowly drains—bigger holes cause it to drain faster, smaller holes slower, so the smaller the holes the better as we don’t want it empty.
Why does it matter how full out bucket is or remains? To that I would reply … * How can we fill others’ bucket when ours is empty? * In other words, how can we be present and helpful with our spouse, kids, friends, or neighbors when we are so exhausted we have nothing left to give?
In order to fill our own buckets we need to take time for ourselves in small and large ways on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis.
Some “time alone” options: go for a walk outside, in nature is preferable, read a good book even for just thirty minutes, take a (bubble, oatmeal, and/or essential oil) bath, journal all your thoughts or even just gratitude, spend time on a favorite hobby (YAY quilting! 😁), take a nap or go to bed early, listen to music 🎶, sing & dance, spend time with a pet, meditation and/or prayer, cook a meal from scratch. These are just a handful of options, be creative, do whatever will make you happy and allow your mind to rest. 😌
Some “social” options: coffee/tea time with friend(s), play a game with grand/kids, go for a nature walk with a loved one, take a yoga class, and so many more—be creative!
The two above lists are some extra “bucket fillers”, regular/daily bucket fillers are ones like getting regular 7-9 hours of sleep every night, eating whole foods, give someone a sincere compliment, and squeezing in some movement.
Doing some of these things on a regular basis—daily, weekly, and monthly—will help keep those bucket holes small and draining slower, leaving us with more energy throughout and at the end of the day to help fill others’ buckets, including those of our immediate family.
I do hope you’ll start making special time for yourself to fill your bucket. I know it’s a work in progress, so today is just a friendly reminder that YOU are important, too.
Warmth & Love,
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