taking care of you

The past few days I have been under the weather.  Stuffy nose, fever, sore throat, achy ears; you know the drill.  It happened a few days after coming back from vacation and I felt incredibly guilty about calling in sick to work.  I had just been off for an entire week only a few short days ago, how could I possibly tell them that I was going to stay home?  I knew my body needed to rest but my mind was pushing me hard to just show up.  

Just show I said to myself.  You need to be there.  You can't call out.  But here's the thing; I knew if I showed up I would be incredibly unproductive.  It's hard to stay focused and work, sitting at a desk all day when your body just isn't up for it.  There is only so much you can push until it will all come crumbling down, harder than you when it had started. 

I live in a fast paced world where things need to have been done yesterday, even though I only found out about them today. Constantly on the move. Striving to be better.  Pushing, pushing, pushing.  With all the pushing there are times my body pushes back and forces me to slow down.  But why was my body doing this to me shortly after returning from a week of relaxing?  Hadn't I spent my time slowly down.  Wasn't I recharged enough?  

It is hard to find time to take care of myself.  It always feels over indulgent and I always tend to feel guilty.  But why?  We need to take care of ourselves.  When we do that we are able to be our best selves for those around us.  It is like they say on an airplane; put on your own oxygen mask first.  If you don't do that you won't be able to help those around you.  

Even through the guilt I listened to my body and I stayed home.  I knew it was exactly what I needed and showing up just because I felt I had to wasn't a good enough reason to show up.  I wasn't missing anything important.  I could always take some extra time when I was feeling better to catch up.  The world wasn't going to crumble because I had to stay in bed.  And so I did just that.  I stayed in bed, I rested, and I choose to take care of myself.  

You must choose yourself.  Make the time, even if it means scheduling time just for you.  It is important to tend to your soul.  To be fully present with how you are feeling and follow your gut.  When you body says stay home, listen and take care of yourself.  

I know it is hard but your body will thank you.  You only have one body and once chance to get it right, so go ahead and make the best possible choices that you can.  

How do you take care of yourself?  What do you do to nurture your soul?