Self-Care is Self-Investment

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You and I need to invest in ourselves to be more effective, more loving, and compassionate in all aspects of our lives. Yes, self-care is supposed to be fun and happy, but it takes effort and planning. There are days when it’s hard. There are days when it will be dragging or boring. And often, it comes with a price tag. The price we pay may be in the form of time, money, talent, and lots of effort. It’s an investment!

How much are you willing to invest in yourself?
Do you pay for house or car insurance? Insurance can be likened to self-care. We don’t readily need it now and we hope we won’t need it. Yet, we set aside a portion of our earnings to pay for insurance yearly or semi-annually so that in case of an unforeseen crisis, we have something to support us.

Like nutritional supplements, our bodies need Vitamin C, D, and zinc to boost our immune system. We don’t take them only when a virus has invaded our bodies and we’re already sick. We take supplements, eat healthy, and live a healthy lifestyle to be proactive about our health. If we do get sick, it won’t hit us as hard.

I look back at the last decade when I had so many things going on in my life, and I realized how my yoga practice saw me through. My husband, Koots, suffered from severe eczema and immune concerns for many of those years. This happened alongside raising two young kids while I worked on various projects, taught part-time, and took my post-graduate studies. How did I do it? How did I survive days when I was too tired even to think?

Self-care is making a deposit in our body and being’s “health bank” through yoga and some simple self-care strategies. I invested time to do it, including the drive to the studio. I put in a lot of effort and sweat, even if the class was hard. I paid the fee for the classes even if they were a bit steep. But it was a worthwhile investment! On hindsight, I don’t know how I could have survived those challenging years without my self-care support.

What are you willing to let go of?
Are you willing to let go of a habit? Are you willing to discard old patterns of living? Are you willing forego extra sleep in the morning? Are willing to stop staying up late at night? Are you willing to spend some money on what’s important? To make self-care work, we need to let go of some comforts and routines, and realign resources.

For something to work well, we need to create space within us and in our lives. Also, if we are to create new patterns, we need to let go of old ways and patterns because what helped us before may not be serving us well now. Check if your old ways of living—that’s causing you problems now—are still applicable and helpful in this pandemic and post-pandemic life.

*This excerpt is taken from the newest book of Michele Alignay, You Can Care For You, soon to be available in paperback and e-book copy at!

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