Why I Practice Self-Care Daily
Now I am sure most of you have heard about practicing self-care when you are living with a disease (or more, in my case) or in general for healthy people.
While self-care is still kind of taboo and can be seen as being selfish, say it with me now, "Self-care is absolutely not selfish!" I have told people, "What would you prefer, to practice self-care or end up in the hospital?"
Why self-care matters for RLS
As I was typing this out, my husband asked, "Isn't this topic maybe better suited for a different disease? Isn't there just exercise to try to help with pains?"
And I explained to him that I picked this to go with restless legs syndrome (RLS) because it's a condition where people may think it's not as important to practice self-care – one where it doesn't seem like there is a lot of self-care involved. I gave him an abridged version of what I am about to tell you all.
What is self-care?
Self-care can be many things:
- Like going out for a walk in nature because not only does it help my RLS, but being out in nature is really good for your health, physically and mentally. RLS can take its toll on mental health and some medications can affect our mental health.
- Buying a shower stool so I can be off my legs and still have hot water massaging my legs when I am super tired, but my RLS is acting up.
- Distracting myself from the pain in my legs by playing video games, which to me is akin to gaming bladder.
- Putting on music to encourage me to dance when I can't get out to walk (my RLS will act up without the walk).
- Joining this community so I have people I can talk to who can relate to me and understand what it is like.
Do you practice self-care?
Mindfulness and self-care
I think mindfulness is a major part of self-care, and I know to some, it is just as taboo if not seen as worse than self-care. Far too often, I have encountered people who have been told that mindfulness is a cure to all their problems, so they don't even want to try it.
For me, mindfulness is like preventative measures I take in hopes of not making things worse. My biggest example of mindfulness is knowing my limits and staying within them so as to avoid aggravating my RLS even more.
Practicing self-care daily
I have often seen people say it's important to practice self-care at least once a week. But for me, I practice self-care daily. I mean, why not? I live with diseases daily.
There are many things we do that are self-care that we don't even fully realize are acts of self-care – how we take care of ourselves physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and socially.
Self-care is not selfish
Taking the time and effort to care for yourself is absolutely not selfish, especially when living with a disease(s). It is one of the best things we can do for health, and in my case, there isn't much the medical profession has been able to help me with, so self-care is even more important to me.
While it may not seem like self-care is important, if you have RLS, it's just as important as with any other disease.
What are some things you do for self-care? Are there acts of self-care you do that you didn't realize were self-care?
How often do your RLS symptoms affect your mood?