Author: Mary Westley
‘True self-care is not salt baths and chocolate cake, it is making the choice to build a life you don’t need to regularly escape from’
This came up on my facebook feed recently and it grabbed me straight away, particularly the part about needing to escape. Two things came to mind. Firstly, the difference between having or doing something because it is enjoyable versus needing something to feel OK or better, i.e. to escape. The second, is the point at which doing something for enjoyment transitions into pain relief i.e. escaping.
A long time ago I used to use alcohol to escape but it didn’t start that way. Social events always included a few drinks, and getting a bit tipsy…or a lot…was just part of the fun. At some point though having a drink became something more than just about having fun. It was a gradual process. Working full-time with a family meant that life was very full and very busy. Having a drink or 2 after work became the norm, it helped me to switch off, wind down, let go. As the kids got older and my jobs gotbigger, my stress levels went up, so did my need to escape, and so did the number of drinks.
Having a drink started as something I enjoyed and at some point, on the journey it became something I needed. Another example might be the enjoyment of those first few cups of coffee to a point where you can’t face the day without one and if you do it’s with a blinding headache.
The first step in any Ayurvedic treatment is to identify and remove the cause. If we feel the need to escape, the question to ask is not, “what should I do or take to support this escape”…but “what in my life am I trying to escape from”. If I need something to feel ‘better’, what is it about me that feels ‘less than’ better? If I need something to ‘let go’, what am I holding onto? If I need something to ‘wind down’, what is causing me to feel wound up?
The message…by all means have a wine, a coffee or a piece of chocolate cake but notice if it shifts from being some you enjoy to something you ‘need’ to get through the day, the night or the week. That’s when it changes from being something you enjoy to pain relief.
Step 1 – Take the time to pause and reflect on whatever it is about the day and your reactions that create the need to escape.
Step 2 – Remove the cause and replace it with something that keeps you firmly grounded in a life you love to lead.
2WiseWomen retreats are intended to help you do just that.
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