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a road through sunlit woods, text overlaid: self care sunday: tending to my future self. A guest post by Mara Glatzel gracequantock.com

Every Sunday morning I strip the beds. I wash the sheets in hot water. I comb through the fridge, getting rid of anything that is past its time. I open up my planner and write down everything that I want and need to do in the week ahead.

I ready myself for what’s to come.

I take a shower slowly. I shave my legs. I remember to put on moisturizer. I do all of the things that I often forfeit on days when I am running to get somewhere, while simultaneously trying to get my daughter dressed and out the door. I look at myself in the mirror. I pluck my eyebrows.

I tend to myself in this moment so that, no matter what the week entails, I will have this foundation to rely on.

I file the papers away. I pay the bills. I return the emails. I make sure that everything is accounted for.

This Sunday practice is essential to the quality of the week the lies before me. With a baby under the age of one and a business that relies on my inner strength and mental clarity, taking the time to settle in and ground myself before Monday morning means that I am well tended to more often than not.

It means that I will have clean underwear and a basic understanding of what my priorities are for the week ahead. It also means that I will be able to look up and out to see something coming that might require my attention and plan it in, before it feels like an emergency.

When I became a mother people told me that I would no longer have time for my self-care practices. They warned me about just how quickly everything gets pushed out of the way to make space for teething and congested noses.

In some ways, this has proven true. In the last nine months I have experienced more demands on my time and energy than ever before in my life. But these demands haven’t eliminated my need for self-care.

Instead, my needs have grown with the size of my family, clarified by the deep knowing that the structural integrity of my mind and body is fundamental to my ability to show up daily for everything that I believe in. I need myself more than ever. I need my own care more than ever.

This is how it is with self-care. The more that I require of myself and the more that I expand my vision for what is possible for my life, the more tending I need. My care must grow with my responsibilities if I am going to enjoy the continued capacity for living the way that I want to.

And so I return here each Sunday. To the sheets and grocery list and scrubbing my body.

To the practice of taking care of my future self, today.

By Mara Glatzel

Mara glatzel, hands out holding a rock

Mara Glatzel, MSW is an intuitive guide and energy healer who guides women in identifying, honoring, and advocating for their needs.

She is also the creator of the wildly popular course The Deep Exhale about carving out space in your life for rest and restoration. 

At the core of her work is the desire to live a well-intentioned life, which means… more joy, grit, and vibrant imperfection to spare.

Hang out with Mara on instagram, Facebook, or sign-up to receive weekly missives filled to the brim with the absolute best of what she’s got – unfiltered vulnerability and heart-opening encouragement.

 

last chance wellness e-guide sale if you want a copy, grab it today over photo of lake and mountain

Yes, it’s true, my beautiful ebooks are going away for a re-vamp.

When I write (and edit), I go deep. So I don’t know when these will be available again, or what they’ll look like when they are.

So if you’ve been wanting to get a 50% off super-deal on one of my popular e-guides, get it now.

February Trailblazing Healing Resources- Fuel for Your Healing Fire  text on top of under the sea photo of coral

The best of the wellness internet. Lovingly curated trailblazing healing resources for fun and wellness fabulousness to fuel your healing fire. Relax and dive in!

My favourite trailblazing healing resources, inspirations, proclamation and motivation this month.

What a lovely video to get you in the mood for self-care.

This blog is so needed, Chronic Style Disorder, supporting disabled parents and all stylish spoonies

The webinar from my dear friend Mara on tending ourselves during these challenging times – highly recommended.

I’m really enjoying Qoya along with the moon cycles at the moment, check out this beautiful vid.

Conversations and tea with intuitive creativity founder Shiloh Sophia McCloud and the world famous SARK? Yes please!

A course on how to stand up for human rights that I am so in love with. I found this course via my teacher and friend Randi Buckley who runs Healthy Boundaries for Kind People, which you should really consider doing, (I am, again, it’s worth every moment).

Randi is also running this free 7-day healthy boundaries challenge. Please and thank you.

Taking care of ourselves and our communities. Some of the most beautiful and inclusive affirmations I have come across.

Speaking of compassion, are you joining me in the Hell No Hustle club? Related: how to stop forcing and have faith.

Sending containers of accessibility and mobility equipment to people who need them – let’s raise some funds to get that equipment shipped!

I think this is possibly my favourite interview ever, if you’d like to hear my telling stories, talking about feminism, myth and healing, check it out (podcast and transcript available).

If you are building a business, do you follow my Accessible Business Pinterest board?

Each week we set our intentions in The Trailblazers’ Cafe and support each other through the week, so powerful!

I love getting emails about how working with Turning Trailblazer has shifted people’s lives and perspectives…if you’d like to check it out, you can get a free copy here.

Turning Trailblazer - Grace Quantock ebook in purple and blue background over image of trees on a black iPad screen

P.S Check out all the healing resources and my top healing apps for chronic illness, healing and caring part 1, part 2 and part 3.

bunch of open pink roses in soft yellow light.

“Everyone who is born holds dual citizenship, in the kingdom of the well and in the kingdom of the sick. Although we all prefer to use only the good passport, sooner or later each of us is obliged, at least for a spell, to identify ourselves as citizens of that other place.”

~Susan Sontag

Be compassionate to your healing body, and your loving soul, as much as you can in this very moment.

To do so, to accept it, is the very essence of being human.

By allowing self- compassion, you free yourself from the inevitable exhaustion of straining to escape your own humanity.

Pain ebbs and flows.

Struggles arise and fall.

They needn’t be set upon like they new projects or obstacles to be broken through.  Sometimes, embracing the reality of a situation is more powerful than trying to escape it.

Listen to what’s true to you at this moment.

Ask for – and grant yourself – some space.

See what work you can do from the place you are in, right now.

And then, be wholly, emphatically, grateful for it.

Thanks to Nora Ryan for sharing Susan Sontang’s beautiful quote in our TrailBlazers’ Café.

 

self care sunday: equanimity in the face of uncertainty

[Self-Care Sunday Series: wellness experts worldwide are sharing their self-care expertise, practices, routines and personal stories.Today’s guest post is by self-care revolutionary Christy Tennery-Spalding]

This is part four in a five part series on meditation and how it can help us to cultivate greater feelings of love for ourselves, each other, and the planet. In this series, I’m examining the Brahma Viharas (or the Four Divine Abodes), a Buddhist concept that refers to the sublime states we cultivate through meditation: compassion (karuna), lovingkindness (metta), sympathetic joy (mudita), and equanimity (>upekkha).

Today, we’ll examine upekkha, equanimity, and how we can wield it as a tool for resilience in times of uncertainty.

It can be helpful, in discussing equanimity, to first be clear on what it does not mean. It does not mean indifference. It does not mean that we are unmoved by consequences or outcome. It certainly does not mean that we are not invested or passionate about our work.

Equanimity does not equate a “Whatever” attitude.

Instead, equanimity, I understand it, is flow. It is a sense of trust and receptivity toward whatever will arise. When we rest our minds in equanimity, we are not attached to outcome. We are at peace in our actions and in our purpose. But we do not act in alignment with our purpose in order to achieve something in particular.

In the Bhagavad Gita, there is a line in Chapter Two that states that we are entitled to our rightful work, but not to its fruits or results. This is equanimity: goodness for its own sake. Rightful action because it is rightful — not for any greater benefit.

Upekkha can support us and ground us in what we know to be rightful, while freeing us from disappointment, attachment or aversion. For instance: we do not meditate to “win” at meditation. We meditate for its own inherent goodness. This is part of how we cultivate equanimity: through devotion in our practice, without the promise of external reward.

Likewise, we can apply this to healing or change-making work.

For instance, I live with scoliosis in my spine. It’s been there for a long time and I assume that it will be there for years to come. I live alongside it. Some days, the pain is greater. Some days, it is less. I never know what I’ll get when I wake up in the morning.

For some, this would be deeply troubling, this uncertainty. But it is a great teacher in equanimity. In relationship to my spine, I dance with equanimity often.

I take good care of my body, my mind, my spiritual well-being. I eat a nutritious variety of food, enjoy movement practice, and am relatively active. I also read spiritual texts and practice self-care for my whole being. None of this guards against the scoliosis or back pain in general. Some mornings, I wake, and the pain is there.

This pain does not mean I have failed. It is not the desired outcome, certainly, of my self-care. But nor does it point toward failure. I am not “bad” and my back is certainly not “bad” because there is pain. It simply is. When the pain is there, I tend to rest. When I feel well, I tend to be active. Regardless of the unpredictability of my body and its healing arcs, I treat myself well, showing it kindness and respect through my words and practice.

Likewise, there is space for equanimity practice in the larger world as well. Whether it’s an election outcome, a particular injustice, or some other situation in the world, we may feel powerless to affect a desired outcome.

But what if we reversed that perspective?

What if, instead, we simply went about our work anyway? We could use the energy that we might otherwise spend on worrying or feeling helpless, and instead, roll up our sleeves and do what we can. None of us can change the course of history alone. None of us can do it all. But we can choose to do our own little bit.

We can choose to act in a way that is aligned with our hearts, regardless of the outcome. Yes, there will be some people left unserved or some struggles for justice that we lose. But through the cultivation of equanimity, we can take refuge in the work itself. We can find hope, interconnection, and peace knowing that we tried — regardless of the outcome.

A gift: Christy has made you a lovely Lovingkindness Mini-Toolkit that you can download here.

And check out Christy’s work at ChristyTending.com

Christy Tending Headshot Smiling in forest, brown hair, caucasian, wearing a brown tank top

Christy Tennery-Spalding is a self-care mentor, healer, activist, and writer. She works with world-changing individuals to help them craft amazing self-care practices. She is the creator of Hella Metta, a 10-day meditation e-course to cultivate fierce lovingkindness. She lives in Oakland, California with her husband and their feral cats, Dorothy & Harriet. Find free self-care resources to start your practice on her website, ChristyTending.com.

What is your experience for compassion? Let us know in the comments.

P.S You might also enjoy top 5 mindfulness meditation challenges transformed and ASMR guided meditation for chronic pain.

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