Yesterday I had my first fancy facial at a spa in over ten years…and it was fantastic! Soft robe, tranquil music, waterfalls. I mean, it was everything I needed in order to relax and—hopefully—remedy my sudden breakout problem. I’ve had relatively smooth, acne-free skin my entire life, until a few months ago when I woke up to a massive rash on my face. Thinking it must’ve been an allergic reaction to something I’d eaten, I didn’t pay it too much attention…until it never really went away. I’ve tried high-end products which seemed to work a lot better than my most recent purchase of an over the counter $8 facial cleanser that left my face covered in massive, painful, red bumps. I couldn’t take it anymore, so I scheduled an appointment for a facial. I needed a professional to take a look at this problem, provide some sort of diagnosis, a solution, and a fresh start. And as I laid on that cushioned table yesterday, I realized my sudden breakouts were more than just breakouts. They were visible manifestations of what happens when you don’t take care of yourself. What happens when you don’t invest in yourself.
Like so many of us these days, we get bogged down by work, school, extracurricular activities, etc. When you have so many commitments on your plate, it’s easy to get stressed out, make poor decisions, and not take the time to sit back, relax, and invest in you. We exert so much of our energy investing in others and paying others back, that we forget to pay back the most important person: you. And when we do invest in ourselves and change our habits, it’s typically after something internal cries out loud for help. Why is it that we address our problems and take care of ourselves only when it becomes too much? Why is it that after whatever we’re facing and have previously been ignoring bubbles up to the surface, rears its ugly head and lets us know “I’m suffering and I can’t take it anymore” do we do anything to make us better? Listen, self-care is of the utmost importance, and if you don’t take care of you, who will?
Don’t wait until you physically manifest that stress. Treat yourself regularly and take yourself to the figurative (or literal, if that’s what you need) spa:
Get a peel: determine the problem and peel back the layers to figure out what’s really going on.
Apply a mud mask: bring those impurities and stressors to the surface and light.
Exfoliate: rub away those stressors and challenges in your life.
Deep Cleanse: wash it all away and start fresh because there’s nothing like a clean slate.
Moisturize: enrich yourself with good things regularly.
One of my favorite characters (Donna and Tom) from one of my favorite shows (Parks and Rec) said it best, TREAT YO’ SELF (please please click the link)! Now, it doesn’t have to require money, but it should be an investment! Do what you need to do in order to be happy, healthy, and whole. Don’t wait until you can hardly breathe. Don’t wait until you’re suffering and struggling. Don’t wait until you have massive, painful, red bumps all over your face. Take care of yourself now. Do a little something everyday that you’ll thank yourself for later because at the end of it all, at the end of all of your commitments and responsibilities, you’re literally all you’ve got.