Are you good at self care?
I’ll be honest, I’m not. My husband tells me all the time because he sees me work myself too hard all too often. I think being a creative and a mom makes for a really tough combo for self care. As a mom, I’m usually the last person I think about and I think it’s the same with most moms. We usually take care of everyone before ourselves.
But although we wear that proudly as a badge, I think it’s something we should work on. We need to practice self care so we can continue to care for our families and have the strength to work on our businesses too.
It took a pandemic for me to realize that what came naturally to me was actually something that counts as self care and now that I’ve identified it as such, I’m MUCH more willing to indulge and I love sharing it too!
What am I talking about?
You might be thinking that’s a pretty silly statement. Creative and Play are words that we stop hearing in grammar school. Frankly, it’s a shame too, because the benefits that engaging in creative activities can have on us are nothing short of magical.
Creativity is electric! It’s contagious and it’s also healing.
Check out this excerpt from this article on Diversus Health:
Being creative can increase positive emotions, reduce depressive symptoms and anxiety, and improve the function of our immune systems. The Journal of Positive Psychology supports these findings, stating that “spending time on creative goals during the day is associated with higher activated positive affect.” Positive affect refers to positive moods people experience including joy, happiness, and optimism.
Additionally, in this same article, Kim Nguyen, a clininician at Diversus Health says: “Using our creativity, we can also practice releasing and letting go of what could potentially become toxic to our mind, heart, soul and body.”
Letting go of what could potentially become toxic? Like illness?
Last summer as I was planning the second round of the Creative Spark Summit, with 2 rather large projects, a full plate with my consulting work, and committing to helping a friend with her summit. Ambitious much?
I’m sure it comes as no surprise that I got sick. I’d been trying to do way too much and not taking any time for myself.
Without thinking, I did the same thing that led me to birth the Creative Spark Summit. I found a creative project to work on that had absolutely nothing to do with all the work on my plate.
You might be thinking, “that’s completely counterintuitive. You gave yourself more work to do, not less!”
And you might be kinda right but also wrong…
You see, I’m a firm believer that creativity, in whatever form it comes, can clear your mind, and help calm anxiety. You actually don’t even have to take my word for it, just read this article in Forbes about how creativity improves your health or just look it up for yourself.
Speaking of health, remember I ended up sick because I was working so hard?
Well, I was burnt out. I’m positive my defenses were down. That’s what overwhelm and burnout do to your body, they deplete it and when you need to defend yourself, there’s nothing left to give.
But this is where creativity as a form of self care is magical.
I needed a break from my work, so I got my Woobles (aff link) kits and started learning to crochet, all while REALLY enjoying myself and taking my mind off of the mountain of work I had piling up.
You want to know what happened?
- I wasn’t as miserable while I was sick in bed because I was learning to crochet and making something adorable. It was actually a lot of fun.
- I felt my anxiety over work subside. The work was still there, but I was able to put my mind somewhere else and rest it for a while.
- Resting my mind worked and I quickly started catching up on work, coming back with new energy to tackle my creative work
- I learned a brand new skill that I’m really enjoying and want to expand on
You might not think so, but you need a break. We all do. And a break filled with creative play is the best kind there is and it does count as self care!
Don’t ever let anyone tell you that working on a coloring book, or designing stickers, or creating paper flowers is only for kids.
These are all quite wonderful activities and if they are something you enjoy, then it is your form of self care and you have permission to indulge!
And, you have an invitation to come join us at the Creative Spark Summit, where we’ll be taking a 3 day break together, learning and getting creative and banishing overwhelm and burnout while we give our minds a well-deserved rest.
Once you’ve rested your mind, and filled your cup with learning and an incredibly special community, you’ll have also learned new skills. Skills that you can put to use in your personal and professional life and continue to come back to and enjoy.
And more importantly, you’ll have learned the importance of self care and taking a break to engage in creative play. Because that is a tool that you’ll appreciate having in your arsenal for the next time you’re feeling down, overwhelmed, burnt out, or even sick.
It’s one that I always come back to, and I’m sure you will too!
So I hope you join us at the Creative Spark Summit. I can’t wait to show you what’s in store for you on March 22nd -24th!
Registration is open and we’d love to have you join the other 3,000 people who have already decided to join us!
See you there!