I took a couple of hours off work this morning because the pest control person had to come by to treat the house for ants. He showed up early and didn't take long, so I decided to renew my driver's license. That too went quickly, but I noticed that my car was riding rough. I remembered that happened to Rick a few months ago, and it turns out that he had to replace all four tires. I decided what the heck? It's still early and I need an oil change anyway, so why not swing by Jiffy Lube? They'll check everything out and let me know if more is wrong.
More was wrong: two tires were bad, a third was borderline, two brake pads were worn, and one rotor was showing early signs of damage. In short, my car was riding rough for a reason, and I'm lucky that there haven't been problems so far. I'm even luckier that I heeded my intuition about getting the car checked out. Yes, it meant that I was there for three hours, which wasn't the most enjoyable experience. It meant a very late lunch. I didn't make it in to work at all because by the time I got out and ate, there wasn't much point going in for less than two hours. I'm sure I'll pay for it tomorrow with grumpy messages and a heavy workload. But by golly, I'm not sorry because I'd rather deal with those consequences than a breakdown or a wreck later. I didn't intend to take the day off, but the responsible thing was to keep my car in good order so I can continue to fulfill my responsibilities (personally and professionally).
It was tempting to ignore my intuition and go on with my plans, but that's just it: heeding the signs now means I can relax and have an easier time later. Self care is being responsible and doing what you know is right now, so you can reap the rewards and achieve your goals later. Sure, being a responsible adult is a pain in the butt sometimes, but you reap what you sow, and life is a lot better if you keep up rather than catch up. Today was a great example of how self care might not always be fun, but it's the right thing to do and will lead to better times, prevention of problems, peace of mind, and success in the long run. Too many people are focused on "right now" and immediate rewards. Self care looks at the big picture and considers what has the best payoffs overall.
It isn't about a glass of wine, ordering pizza, crashing in front of Netflix, and bubble baths. Sometimes, it's about doing what you'd rather not do now so you can meet your goals and sow good for later. In short, it's about acting in wisdom and looking at the big picture. That's not popular in this day and time, and that's why people who do it are happier and more successful overall than the "instant gratification" crowd. It's something to ponder.
That's all today. Take care, and have a great rest of the week.