As human beings we all find our own unique and individual ways to unwind, find peace, get out of our heads, be in the moment and feel a sense of connection to others and to the world around us. For some this means tinkering with a car engine in the garage, pottering in the garden or cooking up a storm in the kitchen. For others it’s working out, making music, meditating, marveling at nature or simply spending time with people who make us feel loved and valued. Whether you call it mindfulness, down time or hobbies, we all need that space, that all-important moment to take a deep breath and check in with ourselves.
As a parent, finding this time can be more challenging but in a tricky twist, it becomes even more essential. I remember as a child being confused by the instructions given on planes for adults to put on their oxygen masks first before assisting children. On the face is of it this seemed mean-spirited and counter-intuitive. Yet the reason behind the advice is simple – if we are not well ourselves, we are in no position to help others, including those who are most vulnerable and precious to us. Research has shown that one of the reasons why many women don’t do sport or exercise, even when they really want to, is because they fear being judged by others for prioritizing themselves. But it’s high time we dispel the “selfish” myth. The truth is that making time for self-care is fundamental if we are to be able to give the best of ourselves to those we cherish most in our lives. Self-care is ultimately an investment in our families, friends and colleagues and something we all fully deserve.
Reiki is, among many other things, my ME TIME. It is a practical tool I can use every day to find peace, balance and energy. It helps me feel more grounded into my body and less caught up in the whirl of the mind. It reminds and reassures me that, in the inevitable ups and downs of everyday, there is always warmth, light and beauty to return to. Some days I dedicate an hour to my practice, other days I manage just 5 mins. But it all counts. Reiki has taught me the profound importance of self-care and ultimately, of self-love. I am deeply grateful for this gift and give thanks every day.