Self Care Starts with Intention

by | Aug 6, 2018 | 0 comments

Self Care Activities 

Last week we covered the initial topic related to self care activities which included coming up with a plan. In this next post, we are going to describe intention and what that means for your self care activities.

Before we dive right into activity options, we need to pause and get focused. This is what intentionality is all about.

A Vision for Success

I have talked about this before in past writing, but I want to touch on this concept again here.

Have you ever taken a road trip? Of course you likely have! Well, before cell phones and GPS (if you were alive back then, LOL) we had to use something other than technology to get to where we wanted to go.

That’s right- we needed a map.

OK. So, in today’s world not everyone is riding around in their cars reading a road atlas (truth be told, on the last road trip we went on… I was referring to the map the entire time… it was more fun that way!).

Anyway, so even if you don’t use an old fashioned map on your next trip, you still need a plan- right? I mean, if you did not call ahead and make a reservation for a place to stay, you may not have somewhere to sleep. If you don’t think about what sites you want to see, then you may waste a lot of time during the actual trip figuring out your next moves.

Even on vacation, it is good to have a plan.

Same thing with self care activities. Without a plan, you have no vision of where you want to get to.

Outcome Isn’t Everything

And it isn’t only about the end point. That is part of the vision, but there is much more that goes into intending into your self care activities.

First, you need to think about where you are today. Then, you may consider that vision of where you want to be in the end. How big is that gap from starting point A to ending point B? What types of self care activities will be needed to fill in the gaps?

I like to think about health and wellness as an individual experience. Meaning, what works for me may not work for you and vice versa.

As you reflect on your starting point ending point, and the gaps in between your self care activities may involve something to do with learning new ways to prepare meals. While, I may already prepare healthy meals and focus more on setting up an environment conducive to proper rest. See what I mean?

No two people are going to be involved with the EXACT SAME self care activities.

Think Outside the Box

As an adult (which I am assuming most of you reading this blog are) you need to do things a bit differently than when you were a kid.

Here’s an example. I was at the beach the other day and there was this one boy, who was about 5 years old. He was running. And I mean, everywhere! He ran from his chair to the ocean. He ran from his family at the ocean to his shovel. He ran from the blanket over to pick up his boogie board. This boy never walked- he ran everywhere! And, he was smiling.

When I, a now adult in my late 30’s, when I think of running I do anything but smile. I hear the word “run” and it sounds like work to me. Now, stick with me, because if you are a runner than you’re likely thinking… Elizabeth, when I run, I smile!

My point here is, sometimes we think of preparing healthy meals, engaging in healthy activity, and all of the self care activities as work. Think about it- the term for exercise is often “working out”.

That doesn’t sound like much fun, now, does it?

OK, so now that you are an adult and you may not find some of these things as fun as when you were a child… you’re going to have to get creative with your self care options.

Could you consider…

  • Taking a dance class for healthy movement?
  • Engaging in healthy meal prep as a whole family or making it a date night?
  • Going canoeing on a river one evening?
  • Doing yard work for healthy exercise and muscle movements?
  • Cleaning the house as you blast music and get sweaty?
  • Hiring a coach to get you excited about health and wellness?
  • Taking a painting class for relaxation and creativity?

The skies the limit when it comes to self care activities! You just have to think outside the box and get a little innovative as your intending into your plan.

Make Your Shift

Since so many nurses approach me online asking questions about how to stay healthy as a busy nurse, I figured… why not help out with some suggestions for self care activities!

I am super excited to bring you another five-part mini podcast Make the Shift series! This time we’re talking all things related to self care activities and what you can do to stay healthy.

In this second of five podcasts, we will cover:

  • Why the idea of intention is important;
  • How to intend into a future reality;
  • Why you set goals after you have the intention to do so;
  • An example of using intentionality in our self care activities;
  • And how to apply intention to your nursing career and daily work!

Enter Tierra Owen: A Healthy Holistic Nurse

I’d like to introduce you to one of the best advocates for self care that I know, Tierra Owen. In fact, this isn’t the first time you have met Tierra as she was a guest on episode 130 of the Your Next Shift podcast.

Tierra Owen, RN, BS has been a registered nurse for more than 12 years, specializing in labor & delivery and postpartum. She recently launched Nursing Ourselves, an online platform and hub to increase nurse self-care. Visit Tierra and check out her course, Nursing Ourselves, by clicking here.

I had the pleasure of chatting with Tierra about a bunch of self care activities and what support you will receive within Tierra’s online course. Check out the video interview below:

Get Started with Your Selection of Self Care Activities Today!

What’s awesome about Tierra is her love of helping other people, specifically nurses. Tierra not only coaches nurses in a self care plan- she supports us all by teaching us how to nurse ourselves to whole person health.

If you’ve been thinking about embarking on your own self care journey– here’s your chance to make it happen! Take the first step and explore Nursing Ourselves. Tell her I sent you and enjoy health and happiness in your nursing career.

p1050390About the Author: Keynote speaker and virtual conference host, Elizabeth Scala MSN/MBA, RN, partners with hospitals, nursing schools, and nurse associations to transform the field of nursing from the inside out. As the host of the Nurse’s Week program, The Art of Nursing, Elizabeth supports nursing organizations in celebrating and recognizing their staff in a meaningful way. Elizabeth received her dual master’s degree from Johns Hopkins University. She is also a certified coach and Reiki Master Teacher. Elizabeth lives in Maryland with her supportive husband and playful pit bull.


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