What is toxic self care culture? It is the consumeristic agenda, directed mostly at women, which tells us that self care means spending money on things that make us younger, prettier, and more luxurious. Although these things might make us feel good in the moment, they do not provide the type of sustaining, nourishing self care that we really need. Here are 5 facts will help you defy toxic self care culture and find fulfilling self care instead:
#1. Retail therapy is not self care
Buying things is a quick way to get a rush of dopamine, which makes us feel really good! But dopamine doesn’t last long, and soon you need another dose. Rampant consumerism tells us that taking care of ourselves is as easy as buying a new gadget, but buying stuff has nothing to do with self care.
#2. Most self care is internal
The kind of self care that nourishes and fulfills usually comes from within. It comes in the form of getting in touch with our feelings, healing from our past, and pushing ourselves toward our highest potential.
#3. Communication is self care
Something as simple as communicating your needs is an act of self care. Sharing our needs and speaking our truth is how we show up authentically. When we show up as our authentic selves, our self esteem grows. Self care is making loving choices that grow our self esteem.
#4. Self care isn’t always fun
Bubble baths and facials are nice, but sometimes self care looks like doing your taxes or organizing that drawer that’s so full you can hardly open it. It’s tending to those mundane, practical matters that aren’t fun while you’re doing them but that feel so good when they’re done.
#5. Real self care is free
There is no shame in spending money to bring joy and happiness, but most real self care doesn’t cost money. It is about communication, boundary setting, and self-prioritizing.
It is time for us to reclaim self care from toxic self care culture. As women, we will always be the target of consumerism, with businesses capitalizing on the unrealistic beauty standards that society puts on us to sell us things. Real self care is taking care of our inner self. Happiness and well being come when we stop striving to buy the right things, and instead focus our attention on becoming our highest, happiest self.