Surviving and thriving in 2017

"You do not fill anything up from an empty vessel - self care ensures we have something to give." ~ Mike Clark

"You do not fill anything up from an empty vessel - self care ensures we have something to give." ~ Mike Clark

Have you set some goals for the year? Are you aiming to get and do more? Have you resolved to be more? The call of many at the start of the year is often, “Work harder, do more, call more, sell more and you will be more successful with even more to show for it all.”

This perpetual drive is what keeps companies growing and we are encouraged to apply this to our personal lives. The challenge is that all this ‘growth’ needs something to feed it – growing companies feel growth pains in their cash flow, families feel it in less time and financial stress, individuals often compromise their health and relationships. What are you prepared to give up to achieve your goals? What is the cost and will it be worth it? What have you put in place to ensure you can sustain any growth plans? Many people plan, hope and dream but without a well-rounded, sustaining approach the sacrifice and/or the pressure proves too much.

Would you be surprised to know that most new year’s resolutions are forfeited by 15th January?

Today, as I finish this article it is January the 15th and already I have heard so many people talking of ‘yet-another-resolution’ not met – often parked in the “good intentions” basket that will be reconsidered next New Year!

Whatever goals you have set for yourself this year (and even if you have set no goals) if you do not take care of yourself, all that you do could well be for nought. To be able to enjoy life, contribute to a family, a team, a company you need to be able to do so – i.e. Not stressed, snappy, irritable, depressed, burning out. How do you ensure you are looking after yourself? 

Self-care is hardly a new concept and yet the practice of it is often dismissed as being aligned with stereotypical hippie/new age people looking for alternative freedom from living in reality.

Many people do not truly value their health/relationships/job/freedom until they no longer have it.

It is possible to find a balance and look after yourself without dressing in flowery clothes or creating Zen gardens to meditate in during lunch times. (BTW if that is your ‘buzz’ – go for gold!) What is important in your life? What do you want to be known and remembered for? Are you on track now?

My first book of this year was “Soul Keeping” by John Ortberg. One of my favourite quotes from the book is, “Routine eats will-power for breakfast”. As I finished the book I read a LinkedIn post “How I went from this to a mental asylum.” The combination of both gave me my topic for the first quarter of this year – Self Care, Team Care, Client Care – we need to do it in this order.

So how do you care for yourself? Do you have a cliché answer – exercise, reading, time out, walks, time with loved ones, etc? The difference between cliché and reality can often be found in a truly life giving routine that ensures you stay fresh, sharp, vibrant, passionate, connected and able to care? As with a lot of life, the theory is often easier than the action – how do you manage it? Please share how you exercise self-care (or how you plan to exercise self-care).

I will explore self-care more next week and include the feedback I get from this week. Until then here’s to your success