WHY NOT?! – mental load and the art of self indulgence

We’ve all been there. Life gets busy, your mind is racing with everything you have to accomplish. Work assignments are building up, school deadlines are approaching, the dishes need to be washed, your children have an event at school you need to help them with, and any number of things we juggle on a daily basis as women. Responsibilities, self growth, relationships, professional life, home life – they all add to our mental load.

Kelly Gonzales of Mind Body Green Relationships writes:

The mental load is a term for the invisible labor involved in managing a household and family, which typically falls on women’s shoulders. Also sometimes referred to as “worry work” or “cognitive labor,” the mental load is about not the physical tasks but rather the overseeing of those tasks. It’s being the one in charge of having the never-ending list of to-do items constantly running in your head, remembering what needs to get done and when, delegating all the tasks to respective family members, and making sure they actually get done.

Amid the chaos and work, finding time for self care and self indulgence is difficult, but so necessary. As women, the stresses of life can deeply and negatively affect our relationships with others but also with ourselves, leaving us depressed, self critical, and burnt out.

Self indulgence can be life saving. When was the last time you did something that brought yourself joy? When was the last time you pampered yourself, the last time you saw yourself and thought “I look beautiful and at peace”? When was the last time you did something just for you? Not only is self indulgence life saving, but it’s an art. Making time to take care of yourself sometimes feels like just another thing to juggle.  And while eating a secret chocolate bar checks a self care box off the list, sometimes the bigger, more lasting things are the ones that truly nourish your soul.

Self care that has a lasting impact, like booking a chiropractic appointment, scheduling therapy appointments, or doing a boudoir shoot, will improve your quality of life – and you can look back on them fondly and see how you’ve grown.  Investing time and money into a boudoir shoot isn’t for a temporary instance of gratification, but rather a chance to see yourself through someone else’s eyes. Someone who doesn’t see you through a haze of mental exhaustion, but rather as the gorgeous and strong person that you are. It may have been years since you’ve seen yourself that way, but the images – and the positive effects – can last a lifetime.

Start slowly, but start now. Find ways to carelessly indulge yourself. Make time to have fun in the humdrum. Turn on the music while you’re doing the dishes, dance with the broom, set down your phone and taste all the flavors in your food, and when you’re ready, book the shoot. Why not?! You are worth it. 

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