What is my true role?
That was a question I spent a great deal of time pondering last year.
I realised that though I have specific professional experiences related to my specific job title, that’s not what really counts. My real work is supporting people maintain good mental health, in out of the school setting. My life experiences have demonstrated that almost everyone is struggling with something at least some of the time. How do we emerge with compassion for both ourselves and others?
How do we demonstrate that self-care to our young people – for instance, are we modelling it in how we treat our bodies and the things we say of ourselves?
Your one true role is to take care of you. Your loved ones. Your stuff.
This looks completely different for each of us.
Being aware of what works for me was life changing.
On those days when I feel I have not achieved ‘enough’, I remember that I would never compare young people or colleagues in this way.
We each have our own paths to navigate.
I hope that in 2023 we each take greater care of ourselves – and feel less guilt for doing so.
We should all be proud of ourselves. For whether scathed or unscathed, we have emerged from the verifiable hot mess that was 2022.
We’re still here.
A new start then.
I no longer make resolutions.
I simply aim to be more intentional. Specifically about how, where and with whom I spend my time.
I want to be in community with people who are intentional about kindness – towards themselves and others.
I intend to spend more time in nature.
To switch off the devices and read and write more poetry.
I even joined a gym, but you don’t have to be so reckless.
Last year’s self-care reading list included Zeba Blay’s “Care Free Black Girls”, a book where the author openly discusses her own battles with mental health – and the many ways she supports herself, and “Rest Is Resistance” by Tricia Hersey, founder of The Nap Ministry.
In January I am reading “Toxic Positivity” by Whitney Goodman.
I’m listening to 1st Born Second by Bilal Oliver.
What will you do or not do to take better care of yourself this year?
Here’s to our Young People. Here’s to us.
Happy New Year.