Stress and depression so easily sneak up don’t they? In a reading today,  I was reminded, though,that I am responsible for taking care of myself. The author, Georgia Shaffer, called it “taking out your own trash.”

At the  beginning of the week I thought I was doing pretty well- quiet time, exercise, journaling, being outdoors, even eating pretty well.  Just listing it though sounds exhausting.  However, by now I am snarky, weepy, think I am no good today – mostly because I haven’t been taking care of my own needs.

Do you lose tracks of your own needs like that?  Get going on the week and off you go- pouring into others and work as if you are a bottomless pit?  Why is that?

Part of me is driven by fear of not being good enough to do and be what God has called me to- then my eyes get off of Him and on to myself!

Then another part gets into the shoulds – should take care of my chronically ill husband.  When will he get better?  What can I do to help him get better? Is there anything I can do to help him get better? And on and on the thinking goes….

Finally, it boils down to giving myself permission to listen to my body God has that says, slow down, take care of me, let this time  be the slowing season of restoration.  In fact my wellbeing depends upon my slowing down and my focus on Him.

So, friends, today, I am taking a break from regular work, spending time outside, and taking a nap.  Winter blues reduction 101 says change routine, get outdoors, exercise and rest.  I am trashing the can’ts and shouldn’ts by giving myself permission to enjoy the day.  How’s that for a personal prescription?

How will you give yourself permission to care for yourself?  What trash do you need to take out?  Let’s get the trash out!

Nancy Booth is a certified life coach and certified brain-based coach.  She loves creating safe spaces for women going through life’s transitions to discover and support their visions for health and well-being in an overwhelming world, explore possibilities for next steps and find hope.  She writes about taming the overwhelm and reducing stress, looking for ways to motivate, energize and inspire you!  You can sign up to receive her weekly blog or contact her to find out ways you can begin to shed overwhelm and stress.  It’s time to explore possibilities of new relationships, better life pacing and gain hope and peace.

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