with Holly Lo
This is an unedited transcript.
Welcome to the new year of the Mondays podcast. I’m your host, Holly Lowe. And I am looking forward to these conversations moving forward throughout 2022. I hope you’ve had a chance to catch up on some of our past episodes, and hear some great wisdom from our guests and all the things that I’ve got to learn over the last few months of hosting. I enjoyed this so much. We have a few changes coming up for this year. And I wanted to take a minute just to explain what this is going to look like. They’re all good, don’t worry, I really felt that it was important that I had a little more voice in these discussions. Because a lot of the questions coming back to me were things I was answering unable to help with. So I’m going to go out on a limb a little bit. And I will be hosting our solo episodes twice a month. So you’ll hear from me twice a month on our solo episodes. And I’m going to be still doing a guest every month as well. So it gives us time to really get some good, juicy guests on here who are going to give you some amazing information. And then our What’s your mama didn’t tell you episodes with my incredible sister, Don, we’re going to hopefully keep that going too. So hang tight. We’re going to work out any kinks as we go along. But I think we’ve got this rolling along pretty good so far. Now as we head into this year, you’ve probably already been inundated with all kinds of information about weight loss and diets and cleanses and who knows what else fitness. I have free January it feels like women in particular, but it’s everyone. Women in particular are getting bombarded with all this information. And honestly, January’s my hibernating month. I don’t know about you. But when it comes to January, I’m like, just let me get my feet under me and get this to your rolling. Now maybe that’s just me, maybe you’re the kind of person who has resolutions and you’re fresh goals. And you’re just diving in from January 1 Onward. Fantastic. That’s great. And we can accommodate that. But the reality is, when we’re hit with these messages all the time, really, but especially at the start of the year, it can really make your make or break how you advance into the year, feeling about yourself, taking care of yourself taking care of your kids. You know how you approach work and life, it can really set the tone. And I live in a really cold area of the world. I live in Ontario, Canada, and not as cold as some places. But it is winter, we have a couple feet of snow. And you know, my chickens don’t even want to come outside right now. They’re hanging out in their house every day. I want to kind of hang out inside every day, we try to get out we do some exercise, we do skiing, right. But for the most part, a lot of my January is very internal. It’s very much my goals for business, my goals for personal wellness, for my mental health through January to March. Because those are our months that we struggle. Those are months that things can feel very dark, very heavy, and endless is the word I always think of. So I want to approach this a little differently. Today for episode we’re going to talk about self care. Now don’t don’t turn it off, hold on. I want to bust a few myths, I want to talk about what I call my top three self care myths. There’s a lot of them, but I’m just picking the top three that I hear all the time and that I repeat to personally. So when you hear the term self care, what do you think? What pops into your head right now? What are you thinking about when I say self care? Maybe it’s self love. Maybe it’s just taking care of yourself. But when you hear that much overused phrase, what do you think of when it comes to self care? Is it doable? Is it a priority? Is it just something that you know, millennials get to do? Is it something that is just so far out of your scope of understanding what to do and how to do it that you don’t even pay attention to it? That was kind of me. That’s how I felt about it.
And at the end of the day, you have to ask yourself does caring for myself matter? I have to say yes, mamas especially Listen, when you hear those announcements on the airplane to put your airbag on first put your oxygen on first. If something’s happening, there’s a reason for that. You are no good to anybody. If you aren’t filled up if you aren’t oxygenated if you aren’t able to carry on each day and Whether it’s crisis or not, it could just be getting through these winter months, it could just be, you know, getting through the next six weeks with your newborn. Right, could be getting through the toddler stage, whatever that looks like for you, whether you’re in a relationship, whether you’re not, if you’re single parenting or not it, there’s still a need, then we do need to talk about it, we do need to, you know, look at what that looks like, and how can we bust up some of these myths that I think have really taken the term self care the wrong way, it’s taking it down this whole other path. And really, it’s become a marketing slogan for everyone. I, I’m very careful that I don’t want even within oil babies, I don’t want that to be a slogan, I don’t want it to be a catch. I want to be a life style, a ongoing process that you learn and you evolve as a mom especially. So here we go. I want to talk about the first myth. And this is one that I always said, always, always, always said, when it came to, what are the ways you’re going to take care of yourself, I would say I do, I didn’t take care of myself. You don’t want to have a five minute 10 minute shower, and my kids don’t interrupt me. Yay for self care. Right. And when I got to drink my coffee, and only had to microwave at once that counted that check self care. That is a sounding familiar, when I would get to go to the grocery store alone. Isn’t it amazing how something as mundane as that can be a joy. And it’s not to say any of these things are not good, they are amazing. But they’re not self care at the at the base of what it is to intentionally take care of yourself. Those are not it. Those are basic human needs. And ladies, we’re guilty of this. We’re guilty of putting everyone else first. And there’s beauty to that. Right. That is a selfless thing. When you’re a mama, when your wife, when you’re you know, even if you’re single when you are serving others. That is a beautiful gift. That is a beautiful thing. Don’t get me wrong. But there’s a balance to that too. And this is what I want you to take away at the end of it all. It’s this balance that you need to pay attention to. And that intentionality is what’s going to make it work, it’s going to make it smoother, it’s going to make it feel less like
a chore in one sense, that’s not the right word less like you have to schedule this in as you move through this. And as it becomes a part of you. So the first one is basic human needs. AI that is not self care. Taking a shower, you have the right to a shower, every day, you have the right to a bath at the end of a long day, you have the right to a hot meal. Those are basic rights. Think about think about what it is that we give up and consider just part of the job that in reality, it might mean us setting up some boundaries, maybe with our partner, maybe with our kids, maybe means hiring some extra help when we are able to afford it, whatever that looks like. But remembering that you’re worth more than just accomplishing some basic human needs each day. And again, there’s going to be seasons in our life right now, if you’re like, you know, on day 10, postpartum, taking a shower is gonna feel triumphant. And that’s amazing. so hear me out. But when it comes to our day to day life, making sure that we’re not counting these basic human needs as self care. That’s just all wrapped in there, it should be an automatic, it should be a given. And if it’s not, then looking at some of those expectations, maybe you have on yourself, maybe your partner and working it out so that it doesn’t feel like an accomplishment to just get a shower in. And you don’t feel resentful over the fact that your your other half got to eat their dinner while it was hot. Right? So having those conversations, that’s a whole other story. But working that out and finding out what do I need just to have my basic human needs accomplished so that I can decide what is self care for me, what does put that oxygen back into my soul into my body? What is it that I need on top of that? So that’s the first one I’d say the second one. The other myth that I find comes up a lot is that self care takes hours. That takes too long. And I’ve used that reason myself. I’ve said you know what, I don’t have time for this. I’ve said it’s you know, I look at women who get their either eyelashes done or You know, I’m, I’m a pretty basic person. I’ll tell you right now I’m very low maintenance, I don’t get my nails done, I don’t get my eyelashes done, I don’t even get my eyebrows done, which you can probably tell, this is the extent if you’re watching on YouTube of my nails. You see what happens there. When my daughter decides she wants to nail polish, we get playing with nail polish, and I end up with usually half, half a hand done, because I just don’t like doing my dominant hand, it’s too hard. So if you’re not watching, I have got one hand with nail polish and one without, that’s pretty difficult for me, as far as going somewhere, getting a haircut, I honestly can’t remember how long it’s been since I’ve had a haircut, I cut my own hair sometimes, right? We cut our kids hair or whatever, my kids get more hair cuts than I do. Right Case in point, my boys especially they’ll see the barber every three weeks, get their hair cut, and they love it. It’s a great outing, they feel pampered, it’s right, easy to schedule for my kids. But you know, I can’t be bothered. So, again, that’s not something that fills me up or makes me feel refreshed either. But I’ll tell you some of the ones that do, it does not need to take hours. When we’re talking about daily routines and daily care, it really doesn’t have to take long. And that’s a really important fact, you want to look at ways that you can incorporate five to 10 minutes of things like alone time. Maybe it’s just quiet, absolute silence, put on some noise cancelling headphones, no joke, this changes my life. And read one chapter of a book.
That for me fills me up, that helps me breathe better throughout the day. That helps me focus better on my work, it gives my brain some downtime. So for me that works, and I that doesn’t for you, I have other members who they need to sweat it out, they need a good 20 minute her pump and workout. Whether it’s in your living room with a TV on and following a video, whether it’s if you’re able to go to a gym somewhere, or whether it’s you know, joining in a virtual class with friends, whatever that looks like, it’s deciding how can I put this into my schedule as a priority? When I have little ones at home? Or when you know my spouse is working Whatever it looks like, or maybe I’m working? How do I work that into my hours of the day, we all have the same 24 hours. When you look at it, at the end of the day, I have the same 24 hours that you have, how we choose to use it is completely different and up to us, right? It’s like me saying I can give us all $100. And how you choose to use that is completely up to you. But you’ll start and end with well, you might not end with the same amount of money. In my case, I probably just save it. But you get the idea. It’s that we’re doled out the same amount, but you look at what people are able to do or accomplish. And many times we measure ourselves by that we look at the busyness we look at all the accomplishments. I started this year by saying no to a bunch of big projects that ordinarily I would have been like, Yes, I’m all over this. Because I love projects, I love taking on new tasks, I love learning new things. One of my top strengths is just learning and intellect and I love to dive in and get better at something. Professional development is my thing. Right? So I have signed up for courses I have, you know, written down on my Definitely Maybe list all kinds of things that I would love to become certified in. And I’ve done many, many of them over the years, many of them, if you read my resume, it’d be a little mind boggling. But that’s not to say I’ve done at all, it’s not to say I have maybe used all of that information and some of them I’ve signed up for never done them or taken the course anybody else guilty of that. I hope it’s not just me. I know it’s not just me. So when it comes to that care, though, for me, I get filled up with information learning, maybe taking an hour, twice a week to do a program online, whatever it is, but for me to actually make that worthwhile for me and to make it feel you know, Soul feeling I have to make it a priority in my schedule. So whether your time blocking out your your days, whether you’re using daytime or digital whatnot to actually track what you spend your time on. I would highly recommend that and we’re going to continue more on that in just a second
so when we’re talking about scheduling this is a whole conversation in itself and we can have more happening with this as we go along. I’ve talked a few times about my Definitely Maybe list this is something I have replaced my to do list with a definitely maybe list I love that movie. I don’t know if you’ve seen it but I think it’s a super cute maybe that’s not why I chose that at all. It actually just came up in a conversation once when I said You know what? I’m definitely going to do that. And then I was like, No, I’m gonna maybe I’ll put that as a maybe. And then I jokingly said, this will just be my Definitely Maybe. Right project. From there, I actually started writing that in my Daytimer. I use a pen and paper Daytimer Yep, I’m old school. I love the Happy Planner. I don’t get anything for saying that. I just love it. If you haven’t checked out the Happy Planner, it’s amazing. One of the things I love about it is the one that I use the most. And there’s different styles. I think I have mine here. There’s different styles of it. And it it’s the one that I like the most has a bunch of pages at the end of each month, not just at the end of the whole year. So at the end of each month, there’s a calendar, but there’s also all these pages to prioritize. What are your top priorities? What are the must get DUNS? What are you, you know, just gonna doodle down while you’re having this conversation on on a meeting? What are some notes you need to take and then you’ve got pages of other things that you can list out. Now the listing out is important for me because in there, on my calendar, I can write down a massage once a week, or every two weeks, whatever, again, whatever my schedule allows for, that’s a big self care item for me seeing my osteopath, that’s a CELT. For me, that’s a self pride. And because it is, in some ways an extra, right, sometimes I have to go physically I need to go and then it’s, then it’s a basic need. But then sometimes I choose to go because it just feels great. And it helps me feel better. So things like that I have to schedule ahead and I’ll put them on my calendar, great, no problem. But then I can put into my definitely maybe some extra things. Right? I’m definitely going to take the afternoon next week to go shopping with a friend. I don’t love to shop, but I love to hang with my friends, right. So we’ll figure out a way to make it work for us so that we all feel like we got some time out and filled up kid free time. That means I’m going to plan in a babysitter. That means I’m going to plan in right prepping dinner, whatever that looks like. So there’s a chance to line it up. So what actually happens? Is this making sense? So when you’re using that the maybes on my list, those are definitely but the maybes are the extra things. Maybe, you know, maybe I will get my book a hair appointment. For me, that’s uh, maybe, maybe I’ll go get my nails done just for fun. So you can decide then, as you go through your week, and I do this every Sunday, I look at my Definitely Maybe list because it definitely is are usually priorities, things that I know are going to happen. I look through my calendar, things that are actually scheduled and booked usually with other people. And then I look at the maybes. And you can decide that what do I have to do to make this happen, so that I feel filled up. Now if you don’t know, what makes you feel refreshed. That is where you start at Ground Zero, you start trying a few things. If you haven’t ever done, let’s say a float tank, I haven’t tried it, but a friend has recommended and I’m like you know what, I’m going to book one in let’s go do an hour at a float tank. Great. I might get there do that and be like, I’ll never do that again.
But at least I’ll know I’ll know that worked for me, or that didn’t work for me. I know that a walk outside in nature hike fills me up. I love to be in the forest, I love to be intrigued. I also love to be at the water sitting at the beach or whatnot. Thankfully, I have both right around me. So those are things that if I’m starting to feel depleted and rundown, and you know, a half hour of alone time with my noise cancelling headphones isn’t going to cut it this week, I know that I’m going to schedule some time in to go for a walk and go for a hike. So things like that if you haven’t tried those things, try them book, you know, even once a week, something in that doesn’t have to take a lot of time. But you’ll know this left me feeling refreshed. Okay, sound good, we’ve got the first two. So basic needs don’t count. And it doesn’t have to take hours and hours. You can do shorter options throughout the day, or throughout the week that are easier to bite off depending what stage of life you’re at, and what your family life looks like etc. Alright, so you have to you have to decide what that looks like for you choose some longer chunks of things like maybe a hairdo or things like that, that you know, might take two hours, but then also look at every day. Do I wake up and immediately get on my phone and start looking at what happened overnight and checking my social media? Or do I wake up and do 10 Deep breaths. And you know, just greet the day with some gratitude and figure out a way to move my body slowly and effectively for a few minutes. It can be as simple as that to get your brain ready for what you’re about to face for the day. So that’s personal, it’s totally up to you. But I would love if you want to respond back I would love to hear from you what refreshes you so keep that in my water things because I’m always looking for ideas to I love to try new things and to see That’s what that does for my mind, body and soul. Last but not last, last but not least, what about the idea and I have heard this a lot. But the idea that nobody lets me have self care time. Nobody lets me. I’ve heard this many times, like probably for the last 20 years, more than I would care to even acknowledge that this is a real belief. This is a real feeling. And I’ve been there I’ve had that feeling that, especially when my kids were really young babies and toddlers, I ran a home daycare for years and years ago for a few years while my firstborn was, was turning one because I couldn’t fathom putting him into daycare, only to go back and work in a preschool. So I was like, You know what, I’m qualified for this. I’ve got this, let’s do it. Well, that meant my personal and mental health, physical health, it went out the window, because now not only am I you know, first time mom, who was just figuring things out, but now I’m caring for other babies. Most of them were the same age one and two and three year olds. And because that was my expertise, and I was great at it. That made it easy. But taking care of me was new. Because I’m a mom trying to balance this now. So trust me, I have I’ve been through a lot of different scenarios through over the years. And it was easy for me to say when my hubby was working full time 24/7 In some cases, for him, it was easy for me to say nobody lets me have alone time. But honestly, at the end of the day, it’s my responsibility. And we can’t play the victim either. We can’t say, you know, I’m not, I’m not able to go have a shower, because I have a baby. I took my baby and I put them in their bouncy chair. And they sat outside the shower while I took one. Right? If all three of them sometimes they all be playing in the bathroom, well, I took a shower, because that’s a basic human need. Right? That’s just get it done. That’s not necessarily classes, self care. I’m, I was very blessed. And I am very blessed to have incredible in laws and incredible parents who stepped in when I needed them to. But I also know a lot of mamas who won’t ask, they won’t ask their in laws, or they won’t ask their parents because they don’t do it right. Or they don’t like how they operate with their kids or whatever. Now obviously, there’s, there’s, there’s issues, then you do what’s right for you, you have your own boundaries. But also remember that if it’s just for a couple of hours, it’s not the end of the world if they don’t do it quite the way you would. So again, it’s those expectations and managing what is what is more important, is it more important for me to be able to go get a you know, a massage for an hour, so that I can let go some of this, you know, breastfeeding tension that’s in my shoulders, and my back from nursing a baby? Is that going to make me more pleasant person to be around and also a more pleasant person for myself to be around? Because let’s be honest, we know at the end of the day, you’ll crawl into bed and feel horrible. If you just put everyone’s head off all day long because you were in pain or because you were tired. Is it worthwhile to ask a friend to take your baby for a walk? So you could have a nap? Right? I mean, I could list out hundreds of things. Yes, it’s worthwhile. And you you decide what it is that you’re willing to negotiate, right? Whether it’s a sitter, whether it’s family, whether it’s friends, you have to ask, because victim doesn’t serve anyone. It doesn’t serve you at all. And it builds resentment, and you don’t accomplish the the goal of taking care of yourself. If you genuinely want to be at your best, as much as you can, right? There’s no expectation that we’re perfect. But we want to operate as women especially we know that we want to operate at our best. We we live that way we are wired that way. We want to serve our families the best we can we want to care for them. We want to you know, take care of our children to the best we can we want to enlighten them and grow them. But in the same respect, we can’t do that if we’re not making ourselves a priority. So just something to think about as we head into as we’ve already started to head into this year. But what is it that maybe we can do a little different on a daily basis? I like to break it down this way on a daily basis on a weekly basis on a monthly basis. And then it could be yearly, is there a family vacation that you do once a year? What’s that going to look like? So that mum actually gets a vacation too? Yeah, that was a novel idea. So I want you to think of it that way. I want you to think of what maybe small or maybe large whatever your lifestyle looks like what your needs look like. What does that look like daily? How can I manage this daily and who do I need to ask for support to make this happen? Who do I need to clue in? Right with kindness, not with demands with kindness, but who can we close? and say this is really something I’m feeling that I need. My body needs, my mind needs my spirit, my soul or whatever. In order to just continue on and grow. I need this. Maybe it’s a therapist, maybe it’s putting into the budget to have therapy once a month, maybe it’s marriage therapy, maybe it’s whatever it looks like for you. Right? As odd as that might sound that is a form of self care because you are taking the time to soothe your soul. And unburdening yourself or having someone give you guidance. Maybe it’s a life coach, maybe, right, I could go all day naming what you could use these self care tips for. But the idea is it does not have to take forever, your basic needs don’t count as self care, those should be just mandatory. And then you don’t have to expect anyone else to do it for you, or allow it, you have to ask, you have to make it happen. Ladies, come on, we can rule the world, we know that. But we have to delegate, we have to ask for help. So remember that as you’re planning this out, and whether you’re writing it down in a planner, whether you’re scheduling it into your phone, I would challenge you even right now, pick up your phone, pick up your daytime, or whatever it is, and look at what’s happening the next couple of weeks, if I showed you mine, you’d see it’s pretty full. As far as appointments and kids stuff. I have a full life I have full days. But I have learned that if I don’t make my own breathing time a priority, I’m in trouble and the whole household is in trouble. So before it gets to that, maybe it’s already there. But before it gets to that before you’re sending up the SOS smoke signals planted out now and decide what it is that is going to fill you up. And it’s going to change as you age, as you grow as your kids grow. As your relationships change that’s going to change be willing to morph with it. Something that you know, you did love to do for years, maybe suddenly, you’re like, you know, that’s not quite working out for me this year. Maybe I’ll try something different. I used to rent the arena here every year, and I would rent it for myself for one hour or one or two hours a week, different days, whatever free ice they had available, I would rent it and pay to have my own ice time because that’s my biggest fill me up time. I’m a skater by for years and years, I’ve been a professional skater and I miss it, I miss coaching, I miss the ice, I miss just feeling physically, you know, fit. And that’s how I do it. So for me, it’s a little more complex, because I can’t just like can, but I don’t enjoy just picking up some weights and doing a workout or you know, working out on the on the TV. I like to hit the ice and get on there and actually work hard and sweat and skate. I haven’t been able to do that for two years because we don’t have access to the arenas. So I this year decided our outdoor rink is available. Yes, there’s often kids on it. So I’m not going to be barreling around the ice or doing jumps and spins. But I can get out and skate. And I can do that with or without my kids. So we’ve made that a priority. And I love it. It’s been so fulfilling for me and physically great for me. So you sometimes have to adjust sometimes you have to tweak it, especially now, if you can’t get to the gym, you might have to figure out another way that works for you. Even home workouts, you might have to have someone watch your kids for an hour so you can get a workout done. Because I know what it’s like to try and do yoga with three kids. It doesn’t always work quite the Zen thing you expect it to be. So I won’t ramble anymore. Having said that, I would love to hear from you. If you get a chance. If you’re on our newsletter list, you can definitely just respond back those going to be I read them there. I don’t have any bots. I don’t have any, you know, assistants who are reading my emails. That’s me, I love to hear from people who are listening. And you can always message me on social media. So you can find me on Instagram is probably the fastest drop me a message there, either through Hello Holly low, or oil babies, either one or my Instagram accounts. And you can find me there. But please let me know because it gives us some inspiration. And I can share some of those ideas as well as move along. Coming up,
you’re going to want to know what’s happening. We’re moving through into some self care talks. But we’re going to talk physical, gut health with women and mamas we want to talk about your gut health, your kids got health, immune health, things like that. We’re gonna cover a little bit of that. But we’re going to be heading into our reproductive health because I want to lead up to things like some pregnancy tips and postpartum tips and we’re going to get a little more, dig a little deeper into some of that because again, those are my favorite areas to talk about. So if you have any suggestions again, make sure you send them in. If you have topics you want to hear about guests you would like to recommend please send them our way. We’re happy to do a look at that and see what we can make happen. For now. May your self care be true? May your basic needs be met