Welcome to Day 9 of the Challenging Times Self Care Challenge.
Before we get into Day Nine of the challenge, the Day Eight challenge prompt was: Identify a physical or digital space or container for a self care toolkit.
The idea of creating an individualized mental health toolkit or toolbox is something that many of us mental health practitioners use in one way or another.
We don’t always call it that or term it that way, but taking time to know and to organize resources that are available to you when you most need it is a good strategy to employ because it’s a way that you can actively engage in taking care of yourself.
This can also help to create a sense of what you can control, too.
To have these resources, especially since your tool kit or toolbox is created, especially for and by you can be valuable tools to support you.
Whether it’s during super challenging times like we’re going through right now, or at other times in your life.
Because inevitably, there will be times when there are other challenging things that will happen, too.
Having this toolkit will be a resource for you so that it’s there when you need it, and I hope you’ve started to create a self care toolkit for yourself.
Personally, I have a wooden box with a lid that I found at a thrift shop, probably a couple of years ago or so, which looks like something that someone made.
My self care toolkit box looks homemade. There is something really quite DIY-ish about it, but organic, which is something that I quite like.
I went through my self care tool kit yesterday in completing my prompt for Day Eight and I added a couple of things to it, including a nail file to remind me that I feel good when I have my nails neatly filed down the way I like them.
I also added a compilation CD from the 90s by MuchMusic — they’re the Canadian version of MTV.
They used to issue CDs of compilation music that was popular at the time. For me, it’s like a reminder or a walk down ‘memory lane,’ but it’s also something that helps make me smile.
What does your self care tool kit or toolbox look like? Please share with me in the comments below!
So let’s get into Day Nine of the Self Care Challenge.
The advice that’s often given is talk to someone.
Talking things out and getting emotional support can definitely be helpful, but it can also sometimes not be so helpful.
Have you ever had a situation where something was on your mind and you decided to talk to a friend or a loved one about it, but then to come out to the conversation not feeling any better?
I know that I’ve had times when I’ve walked away from certain chats feeling worse about the things I was thinking about or worried about.
Because who you can talk to can be a very important part of getting the support that’s ultimately helpful and supportive for you.
So today’s self care prompt is to create a list of trusted people in your life who you can rely on to help and support you.
There’s a saying, I remember hearing a long time ago. It goes something like, “If you want milk, don’t go to the hardware store.”
To keep going with this particular example for a moment, it can be helpful for us to know what store to go to, to get specific items much in the same way.
It can be helpful to know who in our lives we can go to for certain kinds of support and help.
And to reference the analogy again, it can also be helpful to identify the more reputable stores.
So for instance, you can get milk at the well-established grocery store with plenty of customers that’s often busy, or the corner store that might have very little foot traffic.
Maybe get the milk at the grocery store where the milk would likely be fresher and more often replenished, but the corner store might be better suited for a more shelf stable item.
So when you’re creating this list of trusted people in your life, you might also consider what areas they are trustworthy in.
There may be someone in your life with whom you can trust for a general pep talk. But there might be someone who’s trusted for helpful support when it comes to relationship advice or another person who might be good at career advice or how to figure something out at work.
Not everyone is an expert at everything, and not all experts are good at being good listeners or being supportive.
So today’s prompt is: Who are the people in your life you can trust to be there for you, and what areas would they be best in supporting you?
Please share how you’re doing in general, but also how you’re doing with the challenges themselves. You can reach on Twitter or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or Instagram, too. I’d love to share what you’re doing and even suggestions for a future challenge on future episodes.
Stay safe and in good health!