Care For Who?

You cannot care about others if you do not care about yourself.

This is one of those posts that I am directing at myself, while realizing others are fighting the same battles. I often come to the conclusion, when we have an extended weekend, how tired I am and how much I have gotten my body, and mental state, out of whack. Let me expand upon the idea a little and explain my thinking, and tell you how I am going to challenge myself to make a few changes.

What you bring to work each day depends on your own personal health and well-being. This works in reverse, the energy you bring to your personal life can be greatly determined by the attitudes you feel at work. Too many times, work and life seem to work in contrast of each other. The problems you may be experiencing at work or at home are compounding each other. One drives the other, each one make the other feel out of balance.

Here is what I know…there is no balance. We need to stop acting like there is a magical line that can be drawn between work and life so the two can exist separately from each other. If you think about a recent difficult time at work, I am sure you could feel the struggle spill over into your home life and vise versa. The problems compound each other. The more stressed you get at work, the worse you feel about your interactions at home. When you are not at your best, these struggles will only lead to additional struggles. And, the ripple pushes out to further and further aspects of your life.

Care For Who_

The key is not getting overcome by the problems we face and the time they consume. There will be weeks when work will win the time tug-of-war and your home life will, unfortunately, lose out. But, there will also be weeks when home will win over work. Stop trying to keep the game of tug-of-war stuck in the middle. Give the time where the time is needed. Be in each of those moments. To build relationships in any aspect of our lives, you must care personally about the people. Whether that is home or work, you must care…and to care about others you must care about yourself.

Look at the things you need to do to take care of yourself. If you need a certain amount of sleep each night, then do your best to get that amount of sleep. If you feel better when you exercise, then make the time to exercise. If you need a few minutes to yourself each evening…or a few minutes to center yourself spiritually…or a few minutes to ____, then DO IT. Taking time for the things you need to do to keep yourself healthy will make you more productive in all aspects of your life. If you are not healthy, if you do not care for yourself, then I can assure you, your relationships with others will not be healthy either.

Take a few minutes after reading this and write down one or two things that you will commit to doing in the upcoming week to keep yourself healthy. Then, at the end of the upcoming week, evaluate how those items impacted other aspects of your life. I promise, the healthier you become physically, emotionally, and/or spiritually the dividends will ripple through all aspects of your life.

You cannot care about others if you do not care about yourself.

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