Attention, Parents: Self-Care Is Not Selfish

self careNo one is immune to the stress that comes from living life in the world today. You see, life can be busy and hectic. We wear many hats, each of which demands things from us. All the while we try to keep ourselves whole, living and walking on solid ground. But what many of us don’t realize, is just how much we are affected by going too long without renewal.

Stress signals are not always obvious; we might experience headaches, physical exhaustion, trouble sleeping, irritability, lack of motivation, and even destructive habits that we just can’t seem to shake. If we aren’t careful, the world can beat us down and deplete us of our reserves, affecting our relationships, the way we feel about ourselves, and ultimately our vision and our purpose. So, where does self-care come in? Why is it important? Because unhealthy emotions thrive more in bodies that are not well cared for. Our thinking gets compromised when we are overwhelmed or stressed. It becomes all too easy to get upset about the little things, and we end up having nothing left to give toward the things that truly matter.

Self-care is not about indulgences, it’s not even about us. It’s about making the choice to build a life that better supports our ability to live as good humans, creating a better world. We do this when we commit to protecting time for life-giving practices that help keep us healthy and grounded emotionally. You see, when we give back to our bodies through nourishment, appropriate rest, and exercise, we feel energized to take on our calling. And when we quiet the world and seek stillness, we realize all the thoughts that need our attention, that need to be managed and transformed. By hitting the pause button throughout our days, we take everything we notice within ourselves and can begin to make sense of it.

So, go ahead! Put yourself back on your own radar. Take time to refocus some of your attention and priorities, back onto yourself. Attend to yourself today, in order that your inner being may flourish tomorrow.

About the Author

Dr. Roxanne Louh, a native of Gainesville, is a licensed clinical psychologist in Jacksonville, Florida, where she uses her extensive training in private practice with expertise in a variety of concerns, including mood disorders, anxiety disorders, marriage, and parenting issues, and eating disorders, body image awareness, and women’s issues. She strongly believes in the prevention of mental health issues through education and awareness. Dr. Louh has presented to national groups, universities, area high schools, and churches across the country and continues to dedicate much of her time to community-wide presentations, reaching the public through various news media, social media, radio, educational talks, and blogs. An established member of the American Psychological Association, she regularly makes appearances on local news show The Chat and contributes to a blog for the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, entitled “Healthy Minds Healthy Souls.” Together, Dr. Louh and her husband, Fr. Nicholas Louh, an Orthodox priest, co-host “Live with the Louhs,” a weekly radio show that airs at 8 p.m. EST on Ancient Faith Radio. She has also co-written a book with her husband entitled Renewing You: A Priest, A Psychologist and A Plan, which addresses eight of the biggest challenges she sees people dealing with and tackles them from both a faith and psychological perspective. Follow Dr. Louh on social media at @thelouhs or receive her powerful daily inspirational messages by subscribing to Dr. Louh lives in Jacksonville with her husband, Nicholas, and their two children, George and Gabriella.


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