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Is self-care trying to tell you something?

Self-care appears to be the current darling of lifestyle blogs and magazines these days, a glossy little starlet pirouetting in the spotlight promising inner and outer well being if we can just tune into her. It can seem so disarmingly easy. Can it be so? Can lighting an Ecoya candle and painting our nails really be the balm we're all apparently looking for?

The answer is a bit of yes, with a disclaimer that says "that might not be all folks!". Reactive self-care, that is the way we look after ourselves when we're stressed, depressed, under the weather, or have had a day from hell, is, obviously, really important. Having a toolkit of reliable tricks we can turn to when the going just ain't so good really can turn things around. Those tricks can be anything - a hot bath, good book, exercise, talking to a friend, or a healthy dose of Netflix are all common ways of nourishing the soul.

But what if we find ourselves turning to soul nourishing in reaction to the going get tough more and more? How often do we turn our attention to whether there are deeper reasons why we need that self-care in the first place?

If we are increasingly finding ourselves turning to self-care to cope, it's worth turning that spotlight inside and finding out why. What's causing us to run the tank so low we need to repeatedly hit the emergency reserves to get us up and running again? Is there a bigger issue that we're not paying attention to, preferring instead to patch ourselves up with some beautiful self-care? Work stress, relationship stress, unresolved past issues, worries about the future, they can all pile up making our reserves so preciously scarce that tipping over can seem easier than ever, driving us towards those self-cares. Which, since they are packaged as being virtuous and health some, often stop us from wondering what lies beneath.

Don't get me wrong, this girl loves a bit of self-care, and there is nothing wrong with indulging ourselves and treating ourselves like the precious human beings we are. It's a way of expressing self-love, reminding ourselves that we truly deserve to feel great. An even greater act of self-care is to look inside, check out the whole picture, and truly, honestly, ask yourself if there is any deeper self-care you need to indulge the wonderful you in.

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