There are not many truly One Size Fits All clothing items on the market….
Perhaps only the kaftan, or the emergency raincoat that we all carry in our handbag…..
or at least I THOUGHT I did as I rummaged through the bag in the pouring rain 3km from shelter. (True story!)
We know our bodies come in all different shapes and sizes. What looks good on one person may not on another. I’m not sure that a kaftan, as comfy as it might seem, looks good on ANY BODY!
Much of this analogy holds true for the way we care for ourselves. Hopefully over this month of discussing self-care on this page you have been able to adopt some ideas to find the time, energy and motivation to look after yourself better.
Today I wanted to help you find a way to structure your self-care… a way to help you get that kaftan back in the wardrobe and to inspire you to find your red carpet look!
I approach my self-care in 4 areas: Fresh air, movement, personal interests and nutrition.
A kaftan wearing day of mine looks like this:
Fresh air: Read aloud to the kids outside instead of in the lounge
Movement: Take the dog for a walk around the block
Personal interests: fall asleep while watching a TV show after the kids go to bed
Nutrition: serve 3 reasonably nutritious meals. Probably including frozen mixed vegetables.
I happily embrace my kaftan a few times a month. But I challenge myself to get a bit more dressed up for the rest of it! (And I am sure you can too!) Last year I was starting to wear my kaftan most days. It was frumpy, unflattering and stifling! To banish the kaftan to the back of the wardrobe this year I gave myself a ‘mantra’.
‘Do Hard Things.’
For me, this means giving myself permission to take on opportunities that excite me even if they scare me!
DO HARD THINGS: An opportunity came up to be considered for the NCHENZ Executive Committee – super scary right? I put my hand up. Now I have the honour of supporting a committed team in advocating for Home Educators all around New Zealand.
DO HARD THINGS: I used to run. A couple of friends asked if I wanted to run the Buller Half Marathon…. Ummm, no! But I DID want a chance to head away for the weekend with some girlfriends (kid-free) and a reason to get fit. As impossible as it seemed to make that happen I organised the children somewhere to stay; I started training; I sold some stuff to pay for my accommodation and petrol and I WALKED THE HALF MARATHON.
DO HARD THINGS: I used to play the trumpet. Truth be known, I have a degree in classical trumpet playing! I have not played the trumpet for almost 20 years….. an opportunity came up to play The Last Post for our local ANZAC Day service. I felt physically ill from anticipation and fear when I committed to do it. It was an absolute privilege! I plan to do it again next year.
If I had kept wearing my kaftan I would not have taken any of these opportunities. Instead, I encouraged myself to dress up a bit and I feel so much better for it.
Take a few moments to think about what YOU really desire to do / achieve in your year…. What can YOU do TODAY to get closer to that goal? How can that fit into one of your self-care areas?
See, it will be different for EVERY-ONE. It might not suit you to be a committee serving, marathon walking, classical book reading trumpet player (though if that does look good on you please let me know!).
If you too are ready to hang up your kaftan try saying yes to some opportunities that stir you up. Try them out for size. Before you know it you’ll have found what style suits you and you’ll be red carpet ready!