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A look at authentic self-care for the ones who forget themselves to care for others. PRACTICING AUTHENTIC SELF-CARE By Laurie Bowen, M.Ed. (almost)

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Presentation on theme: "A look at authentic self-care for the ones who forget themselves to care for others. PRACTICING AUTHENTIC SELF-CARE By Laurie Bowen, M.Ed. (almost)"— Presentation transcript:

1 A look at authentic self-care for the ones who forget themselves to care for others. PRACTICING AUTHENTIC SELF-CARE By Laurie Bowen, M.Ed. (almost)




5 SERIOUSLY, YOU ARE AMAZING The Responsible Woman The Burden of the Responsible Man Thanks James Christensen for the great art




9  Physically- exhausted and worn out  Emotionally- resentful, stressed, bitter  Relationally- feeling used or unappreciated  Financially – overwhelmed or depleted COMPASSION FATIGUE

10  Physical, emotional and mental exhaustion caused by involvement in situations that are emotionally demanding…..followed by negative feelings SOME INFO ABOUT BURNOUT

11  It happens on a continuum  Early stages:  less energy  more effort to deal with daily pressures  quicker to anger  Become more negative  have a reduced sense of accomplishment,  feel tired more often,  become withdrawn and  experience increased interpersonal conflicts  feel numb, disillusioned, hardened or overwhelmed  Have more colds Later stages see an increase in severe health problems A LITTLE MORE ABOUT BURNOUT

12  Includes all of the burn out stuff….plus a little more.  Persistently “on”—replaying scenes from families’ traumatic events and even absorbing their emotional suffering  Preoccupied with the trauma, suffering intrusive thoughts and helplessness COMPASSION FATIGUE

13  Reduced empathy  Diminished sense of personal safety  Reduced sense of control  Increase in hopelessness  Possibly indulge in escape activities:  Chronic over eating  Drug or alcohol use  Other numbing sorts of things LONG TERM COMPASSION FATIGUE

14  A psychological construct which makes a person feel the need to save others. This person has a strong tendency to seek people who desperately need help and to assist them, often sacrificing their own needs for these people  False Belief: If I always help people in need, I will get their love and approval and have a happy life BEWARE THE “SAVIOR COMPLEX”

15 Wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. It means cultivating the courage, compassion, and connection to wake up in the morning and think, “No matter what gets done and how much is left undone, I am enough.” It’s going to bed at night thinking, “Yes, I am imperfect and vulnerable and sometimes afraid, but that doesn’t change the truth that I am also brave, and worthy of love and belonging.” – Brené Brown, Ph.D. Wholehearted Living

16  Too bone tired  to get up one more time in the night  to do one more load of throw up/diarrhea laundry  to return one more call  to perform  to perfect SUCK IT UP, COWBOY/GIRL UP, PUSH THROUGH

17  D eliberate in thoughts and behaviors through prayer, meditation or simply setting your intentions  I nspired to make new and different choices  G oing- Take Action DIG DEEP INSTEAD OF SUCKING IT UP (the Wholehearted way)

18  We all have it  We’re all afraid to talk about it  The less we talk about shame, the more control it has over us 3 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT SHAME:

19  Shame is that feeling that washes over us, making us feel small, flawed, and never good enough. If we want to develop shame resilience- the ability to recognize shame and move through it while maintaining our worthiness and authenticity— then we have to talk about why shame happens UNDERSTANDING SHAME

20  What will people think?  You can’t really love yourself yet! You’re not___enough.” (pretty, skinny, successful, rich, talented, happy smart, Blah, blah, blah)  No one can find out about_____  I’m going to pretend that everything is okay  I can change to fit in if I have to  Who do you think you are to put your thoughts/art/ideas/beliefs/writing out in the world?  Taking care of them is more important than taking care of me HOW OUR SHAME HAPPENS

21  Most of us engage in behaviors (consciously or not) that help us to numb and take the edge off vulnerability, pain and discomfort.  Addiction can be described as chronically and compulsively numbing and taking the edge off feelings  We cannot selectively numb emotions. When we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.  Everyone numbs and takes the edge off – no one is immune to this. But those who engage in Wholehearted living seem to be aware of the dangers of numbing and develop an ability to feel their way through high-vulnerability experiences. THE PROBLEM WITH NUMBING

22 Self-Indulgence- obtaining the object of our desire up front– for a “high” (cocaine, really good cheesecake, a reckless shopping splurge); or we get a roller-coaster thrill that enables us to experience an excitement unavailable otherwise. But it comes at a cost….later…..whether in our health, in our debts in our harmed relationships. Self Care or Self-Nurturance- fosters both the physical and psychological health requisite to our happiness. We’re not “treating” ourselves to something that in the moment makes us feel better, but is ultimately bad for us. We’re addressing our inborn needs for self-succor, in an adult, responsible fashion SELF INDULGENCE VS. SELF CARE

23  If you need to refuel and __________ is fun and relaxing, then do it. If not, do something deliberately relaxing. Find something interesting rather than soul sucking. WHICH ONE IS IT?

24  Courage  Compassion  Acceptance  Gratitude  Joy Yes, big topics, but when practiced daily and exercised enough, they become incredible gifts in our lives. SOME POWER TOPICS

25  There is nothing noble in sacrificing yourself for others while you are starving at a psychological level.  Learn to give and ask for what you want, to help and be helped. INCLUDE YOURSELF IN THE PRIORITIES

26 “Courage is like…a habit, a virtue: you get it by courageous acts. It’s like you learn to swim by swimming. You learn courage by couraging”- Mark Daly, Theologian Courage sounds great, but we need to talk about how it requires us to let go of what other people think. COURAGE

27 “The greatest fear in the world is of the opinion of others. And the moment you are unafraid of the crowd, you are no longer a sheep, you become a lion. A great roar arises in your heart. The roar of freedom.”-- Osho FIND YOUR “INNER LION”

28  Boundary setting and saying no are critical components of compassion  Take the self-compassion quiz level.html COMPASSION

29 When we are looking for compassion, we need someone who is deeply rooted, able to bend, and most of all, we need someone who embraces us for our strengths and struggles. We need to honor our struggles by sharing them with someone who has earned the right to hear it.

30 “The thing that is really hard and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself”– Anna Quindlen  Talk to yourself the way you would talk to someone you love.  “you did the best you could-its really okay  you can recover from this”  “you are more than you think you are.  you are capable of so very much  don’t hold yourself back “A moment of self-compassion can change your entire day. A string of such moments can change the course of your life”- Christopher Germer SELF-ACCEPTANCE

31 GRATITUDE  An attitude of gratitude isn’t enough….practicing gratitude is a call to action  What does this look like?  Gratitude journals  Daily gratitude meditations or prayers  Creating gratitude art  Stopping during a stressful, busy day to say out loud, “I’m grateful for…”

32  100  The Happiness Project- Gretchen Rubin  A Week in the Life blog by Ali Edwards  How can you practice gratitude in your life?  Being grateful and joyful doesn’t mean that I’m happy all the time.” Happiness is tied to circumstances and joyfulness is tied to spirit and gratitude. PRACTICING GRATITUDE

33 GRATITUDE BEGETS JOY  The practice of gratitude gives us joy. “Its not having wonderful experiences that makes us joyful. Its’ practicing gratitude that leads to having wonderful, joyful experiences.”  What does it look like when you

34  Creative Outlets  A little peace and quiet time  Nourishment  Restoring order and organizing  Building my nest  Connecting with friends  Pursuit of the sacred and spiritual  Learning/studying WHAT TRULY BRINGS JOY TO ME

35  Make three different collages  1- what causes me to numb  2- what do I use to numb  3- what actually brings comfort? HOMEWORK


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