This might seem like a repeat of yesterday’s post, but it isn’t. You can reject someone’s specific self-care advice, but still agree with the general intent of the suggestion. Telling you that you need to drink more water when you already consume plenty, is a tip you can ignore. When you’ve already tried the quote-unquote normal self-care practices to no avail, you can largely dismiss them when you hear them for the umpty-thousandth time. Today’s advice is different in that you’re not ignoring the specifics, but rather rejecting the premise.

You’ve got to reject other peoples’ definition of self-care if those people don’t understand your needs. For example, while there are overlaps between anxiety and depression, the thing that worked fantastically well for your MDD might not really be applicable to my GAD. The fad diet that worked for me might not work for you (if, you know, it actually worked at all). Some people need down time where they do nothing, while others need to stay busy for the sake of their mental health.

Reject Other Peoples’ Definition of Self-Care

The way people define self-care is, at best, what they works for them. Hopefully I’ve clearly stated, or at least implied, that any sort of advice I dispense here is what works for me and could be something to try if it seems applicable to you. At worst, other peoples’ definitions of self-care are things that have been fed to them by magazines, lifestyle gurus, and self-help books.

Only you can figure out what you need. It might take some trial and error to figure it out, and that’s okay. No one else can determine the best way to fill that need. You might try things that have worked for other people, but you shouldn’t feel bad if it doesn’t work for you. The only thing that matters is that the self-care you engage in gets the results you’re looking for.

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