Note: More to Life with Faith and Lois is designed to be heard, not read. We hope you’ll listen to the audio, which includes emotion and emphasis that won’t be on this page. Our transcripts are generated with speech recognition software and may contain errors. 

Lois                        

Welcome to the podcast, More to Life with Faith and Lois.

Faith                   

I’m Faith

Lois 

And I’m Lois.

Faith

Our podcast explores life’s many transitions that inspire and daunt us.

Lois 

Hi Faith!

Faith

Hi Lois.

Lois 

We are in the thick of it.

Faith

We are in the thick of it. It’s busy, busy everywhere you go. Right?

Lois 

Right. There’s lights, there’s lots of enticements. There’s things that I’m mad at myself scratching my head over like what am I going to do here for gifts? But you know, last week we talked about giving and receiving and it gave me a nice perspective on how to think about really intentionally think about what I want to offer someone.

Faith

Isn’t that delightful? It, it changes the whole perspective things.

Lois 

Yes. And also how I was able to receive things because over holidays when you have people bringing food and entering your household and you’re going places, sometimes it’s hard to receive in those moments and it was a nice reminder.

Faith

So you did better. I did a lot.

Lois 

So if our podcasts are resonating with you like they are with me, I’ve already signed up, but I would love it if you would go on our website www.moretolifewithfaithandlois.com if you want to sign up and get our newsletter, we will send you our podcasts in your email every Tuesday morning and please share them if you find that they might be of help to anyone that you might think about. So as you may be feeling some of the weight of this season, we want to bring you episode 102. Transition: The Impact of Self Care.

Faith

I’m excited about this one because it has such a rich meaning for our lives, not only for now, but for the year that’s ahead of us to make some decisions about how are we going to make some adjustments in our life to take better care of ourselves.

Lois 

Because sometimes I think we wonder if it matters at all that we really take care of ourselves. And so we’re going to hopefully encourage you with a few ways to look at yourself maybe from a different perspective. Without thinking you’re doing too much and actually you’re doing exactly what needs to be done. So Faith, what role does self care play in your life?

Faith

It’s a very important part because for me, I have an autoimmune system situation going on and if I stretch that too far then I’m not feeling so good. So over the years I have learned to pace myself better and to set limits and boundaries over things that could actually harm me physically but more emotionally as well as just mentally. So it’s mental self care, it’s spiritual self care, it’s physical self care. All these things are about the whole of who you are and they’re all equally important.

Lois 

You know, I think for so many of us that consider ourselves type a personalities, self care gets put on some way back burner for whatever reason. We haven’t incorporated that. And you know, I used to be a smoker years ago and so I would take breaks every couple of hours, whether whatever I was doing, I would go out and have a cigarette. It would give me time to take a break and come in. Well, when I stopped smoking all those years ago, I didn’t realize that what I also gave up where these breaks and how they had played a role in my life, even though I was destroying a portion of my health by smoking, I was giving myself another piece of health. Only recently have I realized how important those kinds of breaks are. And as I’ve done some good research into this, I now, the way I work is every 90 minutes I take a break. And because my office is in my basement, I need to physically remove myself from the basement and go do something for 10 to 15 minutes and then I’ll come back and go 90 again. And I literally look at a timer and watch this. And by doing this and taking this mandated break for myself, I have found that I am far more productive because I’m like, let me finish this. And then I can go do whatever, you know, take a walk around the block or water a plant or you know, whatever I need to do. It doesn’t matter. The idea is I’m not doing the same thing.

Faith

It’s brilliant. I mean that’s self-discipline, right? That’s very disciplined in doing this, but you’re absolutely right it’. s taking that time away from what you’re doing to catch your breath, to get a different perspective, to see something different, experience something different so that you can come back kind of a little bit refreshed and renewed to continue.

Lois 

So as you can hear, we’re probably gonna take a little different approach to self care than maybe you’ve thought of before because while we completely agree with the notion of going to a spa, which I would really love to do right about now, that isn’t what this has to be about. And sometimes I think when we hear that word self care, we were like, Oh, I don’t have the time or the money to go do these things. We’re actually talking about things that can rejuvenate you, that you can start immediately. And one of the things that we want you to know is that if you’re feeling depleted or exhausted or just need a boost, we’re just glad you’re here because we know we can actually give you a couple of ideas that might resonate with you.

Faith

It’s actually taking a break right now if you’re listening to as it is a way of doing some self care is that taking a break from your normal routine to hear, to listen, to experience something different that makes all the difference in the world.

Lois 

And take that self care off of the bottom of the list and put it right in front of you where you can look at it and say, am I doing this? So with a bit of help from Dr. Tchiki Davis on www.psychologytoday.com and Tammy Forman on www.pathporward.org we came up with a few ways that you might want to make some more space in your life and when you have that space, Hey, you might be able to take care of yourself a little better.

Faith

That’s a point well taken and sleep is one of the first big ones because we can get so focused on even at at night we can get distracted and Oh I need to do this before I go to bed or I need to take care of this or I need to make a list. All those things should be done way ahead of time because sleep is a priority. You don’t get enough sleep, you’re not going to be taking good care of yourself.

Lois 

And you’ve given such great ideas and thoughts about how you kind of prepare yourself in the evening. And you know, I make the mistake sometimes of reading things that are too heavy or watching things that are too anxiety filled and it takes me than a while to come down. And you switch that up with something to laugh at.

Faith

I do. I do the laughing thing first and then I will always go upstairs and I will put on my headphones on, listen to some really soothing music to quiet myself. And I usually will play a few games on the computer of Mahjong just to quiet my brain and my brain comes down, keeps coming down and pretty soon I’m so tired I’m going, I’m going to bed.

Lois 

And that is self care itself at its height. Yes. And sometimes we don’t even realize that yes, a bath may be really great but maybe you don’t need it. Maybe you’re able to do it with the headphones and playing a game or bringing yourself down. That’s right. But I think we all know what works for us because different things work for each of us individually.

Faith

And that’s so important because to find out what works for me, because we all are different and our brains are different and we need to find what works for us, but find it and make it a routine because it will help you get deep rest.

Lois 

So that’s one element of self care. Another is try to incorporate some form of exercise as part of your daily functioning. And this all looks different again to a lot of people. I mean, I have boys who are in the gym working out every single day. I am not, that doesn’t mean I don’t do daily exercise. So figure out what you need, but there’s something that happens to your brain and to your body with physical movement that’s regular, that can shake things up in a beautiful way for you.

Faith

And if you’re not healthy, you’ve had an injury. That doesn’t mean that there isn’t something you can do. Even if it’s moving, your arms are moving your legs, do what you can do and it will make a difference.

Lois 

Right. You know, I know people who swim every single day and they do a good job of doing that. I have this weird thing of I jump every single day. I’ve started at five minutes and I increase it, but even at just five minutes, the difference this makes in my mental wellbeing is crazy and I have a timer on, you know, or I can be listening to something at the same time with the timer on, but it goes so quickly. It’s as if I’ve moved some brain cells and physical cells around so that when I’m finished, anything that was bugging me in the morning is gone.

Faith

Oh, it’s fantastic. It’s magic.

Lois 

It’s like magic and it’s self care and these are things again, that you can do without having to pull out your pocketbook.

Faith

That’s right. That’s so good. Yeah. It doesn’t mean you have to pay the $60 a month to go to a gym. It’s finding your way. Just taking that walk. I’ve encouraged some of my clients who say I can’t walk very far. I go, can you walk a half a block? Yeah, I could do that. Then do that. Do the half a block because that’s what you can do. So instead of saying, I can’t do something, find out what you can do and then do it.

Lois 

And watch what happens to your anxiety when you actually follow through on this. And especially if it becomes regular, then you actually realize that for me I need this as part of my regimen. Yes. And that’s a good thing. It is a good thing.

Faith

And another thing is to say no. Oh boy. To say no one had SAPs your energy and yes to self care. That is so hard to do is to put that limit, to put that boundary of saying, no, this won’t work for me. Or I need to say no to this event that I really want to go to. I don’t want to miss out. But if I go, I’m likely to get sick cause I can feel myself not feeling very good right now.

Lois 

It’s funny how we add so much to our lives, especially in this holiday season, faith only to say, what have I done? I know, right?

Faith

And that’s the simple word. No, you actually have to practice that. We’ve talked about this before. To develop the word know without feeling guilt or shame or that you’re a loser somehow because you’ve said that word is so important. So practice it, practice it in the car, practice it in front of a mirror. No, and do it kindly and do it with respect and explain just a little bit. You do not have to explain all the reasons why you’re saying no, I’ll limit is a limit. It’s a boundary that has for you. That’s self care.

Lois 

You know, finding ways to say it. I, I’ve come up with different phrases and so think about those phrases that will work for you and write them down and you’re absolutely right. Practice them in a mirror. And I’m trying so hard right now to say no without making an excuse, like figuring out, well this is why. And going into deep detail like you just said, don’t need to explain. I really don’t, I just can’t. And sometimes there are moments where you can offer another opportunity where you know, in two weeks I know my schedule is going to open up and I can offer this at that time and that’s great. And if you can’t do that, that’s okay too. Before, if I used to think, if I couldn’t offer you know, a resolution, then I can’t say no. Well sometimes there isn’t a resolution to offer.

Faith

And one of the, one of the motivators have not been able to say no, we want to be liked. So now we’re thinking about the other person and we’re not thinking about what we need. And it’s a balance of both. It’s not about being selfish to say no, it’s about what is appropriate for me. So I can actually say yes to you and give you my best, not my leftovers.

Lois 

And when we honor ourselves in this way that we’re not giving leftovers that we are our best, that’s when we’re able to give ourselves some self care. And what will you do instead? Oh, I don’t know. Read a book. Maybe have a cup of tea, a glass of wine, I mean whatever it is, you can actually, if you want to call that indulgence, but you can care for yourself in a way that will actually bring you renewed energy just after having. said no.

Faith

That’s fabulous.

Lois 

Cool way to do it. So you know, we’d like to share with you some exciting news from our podcast sponsor, which is A Stepping Stone. So if you’re looking for a path to a healthy mind, we want to let you know about this amazing treatment program.

Faith

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Lois 

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Faith

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Lois 

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Faith

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Lois 

Call them at 303-942-0512.

Faith

Or go online to www.steppingstonenow.com.

Lois 

So we are back with Episode 102, Transition, the impact of self care. And one of the best ways I know Faith gets self care and cares for herself is to get outside.

Faith

That’s my most favorite, just to be outside and to breathe and to hear the sounds and to open a window. Even even if you can’t get outside to open a window and hear the sounds that are outside can change your whole perspective and have you take that deep breath and go, okay, the world is really still working. And then it feels like then you begin to work with it as well. But yes, listening to the animals, listening to the birds, the the sounds, the wind through the trees, the smell of spring or fall or winter or summer, all of these things to enhance your five senses will change your perspective.

Lois 

And you know, even if you’re in a place like, uh, we are in the Denver metropolitan area where it’s really, really cold right now. We’ve had this cold spell, you can still bundle up and even if it’s only for a few moments or, or open the window, you know, put your head outside and feel this. I grew up, I’m half Danish and half Armenian and Danish culture really has a kind of a thing for babies. And they put them in prams or strollers and when they’re newborn up until however long they’re in those prams, every day you push the stroller outside and you of course you’re watching, okay, not saying you abandon a child. But you’re standing or you put it in the backyard or something or on your veranda balcony, wherever you are. And you have your child outside for a certain amount of time. Now it’s not hours, you’re not putting anyone in danger. But the idea is even for a baby, they recognize that fresh air is really essential for their development. And so I had gotten that in my system just because I was born that way and I was, my mother did that and we did that with our kids because I knew of this and it’s a wonderful thing to consider why it’s so important for babies. Well then, of course it’s important for us.

Faith

Yes it balances our whole system. We were meant to be a part of nature. We were meant to be a part of it because we are nature itself. I mean we reflect that and everything that we breathe and we take in is for us and we tend to forget that and we ignore it and we just stay put in one spot and that’s not enough.

Lois 

So get out when and where you can wherever you are right now.

Faith

And another one is to organize your space. Well for me it’s, I’m not organizing my space or I will feel really fruit loops, but I do get the idea of, I do like things tidy like around the kitchen around things. And so if that’s put into place I can take a deep breath and go, okay, I feel better. I can walk away from it. That feeling of being able to walk away from something is a part of self care. And so whatever that might look like for you, organize that, clean it distribute it, do whatever you need to do sort. Those are things that can help you feel, Hmm, I can move on.

Lois 

Right. And it’s so interesting to think of that as an element of self care, but, but we’ve talked about to do lists and how, you know, some of us have just the one, two, three and then when we finish that then we can add more others. If you have nine things on there, I don’t know how you do it, but you do. And others need to clean certain elements, like have desks really tidy. Neither faith nor I subscribed to that. So don’t worry, we’re not saying to keep things clean, but it’s whatever scrambles you. Yes. And for some people it’s the way their bike is hanging in their garage. For others it’s what’s under the kitchen sink. They can’t stand if it’s not in order. So if that keeps you from feeling like you can go through your day, clean it up. Or just take care of it so that you can move on and give yourself room for self care, that’s the key. Because when you do that, then you give yourself the space. A lot of times we just get ourselves so busy that we don’t have the space to take care of ourselves.

Faith

That’s so true. And self care as a discipline instead of an indulgence. And this is so critical because we tend to think as we’ve already addressed that self care is doing something, going on a vacation and going to a spa, Ugh, taking that hot bath, taking that time off, self care day type thing and that self care. Hmm. That’s, that is an important piece to self care. But it’s not the totality. Self care should be woven into your daily activity. It should be woven into your life. So where does your self care show up from the time you wake up to the time you go to bed.

Lois 

So it’s really how you live and breathe. Yes. Every single day. And I think we forget that. And so when we put it on the bottom burner, it’s as if we’re not paying attention to a piece of ourselves. You know, Faith and I talk often about scanning your body. So when you’re looking at all of these elements, this is a piece of it. And one of the things I learned for me to understand self care is to let other people take care of themselves. It was like, wow, that allows me, again, what we’re doing is we’re challenging all of us to give ourselves more space so that we can offer care to ourselves. And for us to do that, we sometimes have to remove things that are kind of like clogging up the system, right?

Faith

Or know how to disengage from. And at least you know, I mean you can be around it, but you disengage from where it doesn’t impact you. And if you don’t have that discipline learned well enough yet practice it because you’re going to have those encounters through the rest of your life. You have people that are going to disagree with you or there’ll be conflict or whatever. It’s not your responsibility to take care of them.

Lois 

You know, one of the other things that I, the suggestions that I’d seen was sometimes at this time of year in particular, I like to binge on certain shows. Oh let me watch just one more episode. And then I remember, Oh I’ve got to be up at 5:30 in the morning and then I wake up groggy and tired and you know, learning that even that little bit of discipline that’s self care for me to say, okay only two episodes. Instead of, I don’t know four. I mean if you have something that you really want to do in the morning and that’s part of your schedule, that is part of your self care, then take care of yourself the night before instead of pushing yourself all the way to the limit so that you’re exhausted when you’re trying to help yourself in the morning.

Faith

So these are just like some of the examples. There are so many different ways, unique ways, and again, dependent on who you are and what motivates you and what comforts you look to those things to be a part of your self care.

Lois 

You know, I just had the privilege to see the new movie and a lot of you are commenting on this “It’s a Beautiful day in the Neighborhood.” And Fred Rogers really lived out this balance of self care. It’s because of the way he says that he took care of himself, that he had the energy and the joy to give to those around him. So he didn’t just wake up like some people said, Oh, that’s just his personality. His wife was clear to tell us that he was no saint and that he actually, you know, established what time he got up in the morning. What he did with his spiritual practices physically, he was swimming. He would pound on the piano if he needed to deal with anger issues. It was really well done to explain that he had to remind himself on a daily basis how he could take care of himself so that his presentation to all of us and to himself was one of extreme kindness.

Faith

That’s so good. So if you haven’t seen the movie, it’s a good movie to go see.

Lois 

I would strongly recommend it and it will make you stronger.

Faith

Excellent. Self care is the discipline to do the things that are good for you instead of what feels good in the moment.

Lois 

When we take care of ourselves, we don’t have to indulge to restore balance. It becomes a way of life.

Faith

The next time you take a scan of your body, pay attention and give yourself what you need right then and there.

Lois 

Please share this podcast and join us next week for Transition: The impact of Reflection.

Faith

Get the latest news on our social media platforms and on our website and please subscribe.

Lois 

More to Life with Faith and Lois is a podcast to support, encourage and uplift you.

Faith

As you transition through all sorts of change, we want you to know there is more to life.

Lois 

We’ll be back next week.