Don’t Underestimate the Importance of Self-Care

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― Chuang Tzu

Practice Self-Care

To take care of myself, I eat healthily, meditate, and exercise on a regular basis. In addition, I am proactive in my recovery.

For example, since I enjoy weightlifting and rock climbing, I often times feel sore after my workouts. To help with recuperation, I invest in the following:

  • Monthly massages
  • Frequent chiropractic adjustments
  • Recurrent acupuncture treatments
  • Weekly yoga
  • Daily stretching, foam-rolling, and myofascial release

Realizing my health is my valuable asset, I invest time and money in nourishing it. By having a thriving and energetic body, I can perform at a high level in everything I do. This translates to being enormously engaged at work and acutely present during my interactions.

Because of its low cost and abundant availability, stretching, foam rolling, and myofascial release are my main ways of self-care. Since my body is tight upon waking every morning, I begin with some light yoga stretches followed by some intensive poses such as regular and tripod headstands and wall-assisted handstands.

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Additionally, I would perform a similar sequence at night before bedtime.

Professional Massages

Professional massages are great ways to better take care of yourself. To understand which best suits your needs, here are the four main types of massages.[1]

  1. Swedish – gentle massage using long strokes, kneading, and deep circular movements, tapping and vibration to create relaxation and invigoration.
  2. Deep Tissue – focuses on deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue using slow and forceful strokes to aid with muscle damage from injuries.
  3. Sports – similar to Swedish, but catered towards those who perform athletic movements to help prevent and treat injuries.
  4. Trigger point – targets the tight muscle tissues areas in the body caused by injury or overuse.

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  • Digestive disorders
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Temporomandibular joint pain
  • Soft tissue strains or injuries
  • Insomnia related to stress
  • Myofascial pain syndrome
  • Anxiety
  • Headaches
  • Sports injuries

Although massages are beneficial, they may not be for you if you have the following conditions:

  • Any fractures in the body
  • Severe osteoporosis
  • Any bleeding disorders or currently on blood-thinning medication
  • Healing or burn wounds
  • Deep vein thrombosis
  • Severe thrombocytopenia

To decrease friction on the skin, massage therapists may use oils such as coconut oil.

Acupuncture Therapy

A 3,000-year-old Traditional Chinese medicine healing technique, acupuncture therapy is based on the principle of energy flow in the body. When circulation is fluent, the body is healthy and well. However, illness, pain, and disruption can occur when there’s a blockage.

By selectively injecting fine and sterile needles into the skin to stimulate specific anatomic sites in the body, acupuncture therapy can:

  1. Improves bodily functions
  2. Promotes natural healing functions

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  • Pressure
  • Heat
  • Electric stimulation
  • Massage
  • Cupping
  • Topical herbal medicines and linaments

According to research,[2] acupuncture therapy can help with chronic pains such as:

  • Neck pain
  • Lower-back pain
  • Osteoarthritis/knee pain

In addition, it may also prevent migraine headaches and reduce the frequency of tension headaches. Despite some inconsistency with clinical practice guidelines, acupuncture is something you can test for yourself.

As for many things, results may vary. Therefore, it’s critical to have an open mind and try it out for yourself. Although the science may have encouraging claims, it’s important to ask yourself the following:

  • “What benefits (or lack of) do I have from this method?”
  • “Does it work for me?”
  • “Do I have positive experiences with it?”

After your unique experience, you can create your own conclusions.

Closing Thoughts

Self-care is an important and underestimated topic. That’s because to better excel in life, it’s imperative you first take care of yourself. And afterward, you can better serve others and the world. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • “If I’m not in a positive place, how effective will I be in everything I do?”
  • “How can I expect to help my family, friends, and colleagues if I’m not well myself?”
  • “What I can do to fully stepping into the world?”

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I am on a mission to help 1,000,000 people, but I can’t do that without your help. Please share this article with anyone who you may think will find it valuable and helpful.

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Footnote References:

[1]Never had a massage? What you should know. (2015, December 07). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/massage/art-20045743.

[2]“Acupuncture: In Depth.” National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 21 Feb. 2017, nccih.nih.gov/health/acupuncture/introduction#hed3.

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