Hello there, and welcome back to the Mountain Practice Journeys podcast!
I’m your host, Cindy.
Here in Episode 60 I talk about the unconventional self-care plan that works for me.
Here we go…
Episode 60 Show Notes Links
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Episode 60 Transcript
You’re listening to the Mountain Practice Journeys podcast: a comfy, cozy place for private practice introverts, highly sensitive therapists, and solopreneurs who help and heal.
This is the place for practical, nature-based, magickal support for your business and life.
Hello there, and welcome back to the Mountain Practice Journeys podcast! I’m your host, Cindy. Here in Episode 60 I’m going to talk about the unconventional self-care plan that works for me.
Before we get into the episode topic, I want to take a minute to address the term “self-care” and all that comes with it.
If you’ve been following me on instagram, you’ll have noticed some posts that I’ve recently been sharing from my “It’s Okay Series.” Along with the posts, I reference a quote from F. Scott Fitzgerald that states, “The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.”
I want to address this sentiment as it relates to self-care. There are two opposing realities.
One side of the coin is that self-care practices support us in our daily lives. Taking care of ourselves is one of the most important things we can do. And I believe that practicing self-care is now more important than ever. Creating space for ourselves to heal is invaluable.
The other side of the coin is the reality that we live in a society that makes caring for ourselves extremely difficult. The self-care movement is laced with inequities and interwoven with privilege and toxic positivity. Taking a bubble bath is not going to relieve your experience of injustice, or your experience of a toxic work environment, or any other systemic or societal inequities that are present in our world today.
I thought it was important for me to address this before I speak on anything related to self-care. I am acknowledging the privilege that comes along with the ability to practice self-care.
For this episode I want to share what makes self-care possible for me, and that is strict boundaries.
If I had to identify the most important aspect of my self-care plan it would be one word – boundaries. Strict boundaries are what makes everything else possible.
Take special note of what I’m about to say… boundaries don’t only keep things out, they keep things in. Let that sink in for a moment. By having solid boundaries, we are able to savor and protect all the wonderful things within our lives that we love.
Too often boundaries can be interpreted as harsh or excessive. That’s not how I have come to see them.
When I first began my journey into building up more boundaries in my life and business, I was worried that others would view me as mean or uncaring. But as I enacted more boundaries, the opposite happened. People began commenting on how they admired what I was doing. They wondered if they could do something similar, and began creating more helpful boundaries for themselves as a result.
There are many ways that I have incorporated boundaries into my life and work. There are too many to go over here, but I do want to share one example and that is my email auto responder. I’ll likely go into more detail in a future episode about how to use your email autoresponder to protect your time, but for now I’ll just share the basics. The gist of my email autoresponder is that I prioritize my current clients and that I allow myself up to one week to respond to emails. I also list out the types of emails that I will not be responding to.
There are several things that this does. It allows me to cut the anxiety-ridden tether to my email by giving me plenty of time and space to respond. It also helps me to release any guilt for not responding to emails that aren’t quite spam, but that are wanting something from me and draining my energy.
Strict boundaries allow space for me to experience the two things that feed my soul and those things are solitude and following my bliss.
Solitude is one of the best things that I can give myself. It is in these times of sitting in silence, and being alone with my thoughts, that I have had profound insights in all areas of my life. I’m able to hear my intuition and inner guidance, and it has never steered me wrong.
I believe that solitude is something that we desperately need, yet do not get enough of. There are many reasons for this, but I believe the two most common are, one, that we are afraid to be alone with our thoughts, and two, that toxic capitalism makes us believe that we don’t have the time or space, and if we do take the time and space we are made to feel guilty for doing so.
Solitude can fly in the face of the commercialized form of self-care, where you are scheduling time to do all the self-care things such as going to the gym, booking a massage, and so on.
I want to leave you with both a reminder and a word of warning – we can sometimes try so hard at making time for self-care that we over-schedule ourselves in the service of self-care, which is counterproductive. So I just want to ask that you not be afraid of doing nothing for self-care.
Solitude is what allows me the time and space to follow my bliss. It frees up both my mind and my calendar so that I can say yes to the things that light me up. I like to follow my energy, so following my bliss can look many different ways. It may be that I spend time with friends, work on a project, curl up with a book, bake cupcakes, or spend some time in nature.
So, If I were to sum up my unconventional self-care plan it’s this… I fiercely protect my time and energy, so that I can spend my time and energy in the ways that feed my soul.
ACORN (Tarot Card Pull)
Welcome to the acorn segment. With each solo episode I’ll be drawing a tarot card to help provide some magickal inspiration and insight.
The card for this episode is the Six of Swords.
I’ll describe the card for those of you who may not be familiar. This card depicts a woman and a child in a boat that is being rowed across water to land. There are six swords standing up in the boat. The water on one side of the boat is wavy, yet it is calm on the other, indicating that they are leaving behind a difficult situation and are headed toward more peace.
The message from this card is that you may be going through a rite of passage of some sort. You are in transition and are releasing the baggage of the past that no longer supports you.
The swords in the boat represent your memories and baggage, and you get to decide what you bring along with you to your new destination.
This transition may be one that you have chosen or one that you had no control over. It can indicate a change in relationship, a move, a change in job, or even a mindset shift or emotional healing. It can even indicate an upleveling in your life or career.
You are likely experiencing discomfort, or some form of fear, because of the rite of passage you are currently in – but remember, this is temporary.
Be aware that your stress may be magnified at this time, but the changes that you are experiencing are for your highest good.
Succinctly, the Six of Swords is saying that your current temporary discomfort is for the best and you will soon arrive on a more peaceful shore.
I’ll post a picture of the card along with the message today on my instagram @mountainpracticejourneys so head on over and let me know if this message resonates with you at this time.
Before we end today, I wanted to share more about my ability to say yes to the things that light me up. This comes from Human Design. For those of you who are not familiar, Human Design is a holistic system of ancient and modern wisdom. Using a beautiful synthesis of astrology, the i ching, kabbalah, the chakra system, and quantum physics, Human Design sees your uniqueness and guides you in a way to live your life with more ease, so that you are working alongside your design instead of against it.
I’ll be hosting a tiny retreat in Asheville, North Carolina this September called Design Your Aligned Life. This retreat will be for only four people and we will spend 4 days relaxing in nature, masterminding, and learning the basics of Human Design so that you can live a more authentic and aligned life.
There’s only one spot left for this retreat. The official application opens today, but I put out a special early invitation to apply to my retreat interest list and to my instagram followers and most of the spots were booked immediately.
If this intrigues you, please visit mountainpracticejourneys.com/retreat/ for more information and to apply.
Be sure to sign up for the retreat interest list on the web page I just mentioned so that you can have priority application for all future retreats. I plan to hold another retreat just like this one in 2023.
Thank you so much for joining me today. This episode concludes Season 6 of the Mountain Practice Journeys podcast. I’ll be taking a 3 week break and will be back before you know it with a wonderful Season 7 filled with helpful topics and inspiring guests.
I’m truly grateful that you choose to join me here for practical, nature-based, magickal support for your business and life. For more inspiration and to see what I’m up to, join me over on instagram @mountainpracticejourneys If you’re enjoying yourself here, please head over to Apple Podcasts and hit those 5 stars and I’ll be over the moon. And if you’d like to work with me, join me in Forestmind, my cozy, small-group mastermind for private practice introverts, highly sensitive therapists, and solopreneurs who help and heal. May the forest be with you.
I Want You To Be Successful In Business & In Life!
Starting, growing, and maintaining a business is a big deal. It's super-exciting and super-scary all at the same time. I created Mountain Practice Journeys to support you through the difficult and muddy terrain, and to celebrate with you when you have reached each summit of the many mountains you will conquer on your journey.
Happy Climbing, Cindy