Self Care – before you take a bubble bath

There’s lots of stuff out there about self care and self love, a lot of it involves grooming (which is fine if that’s your thing) but ignores the very basic stuff.

For me, the things I tell myself to do BEFORE I shell out for a mani-pedi to make myself feel better, are:

Go to bed when you are tired.
Eat when you are hungry.
Fasten your seatbelt!!
Do basic cancer and other wellness checks on your body.
Do not work when you are sick.
Wear sunscreen or a hat in the sun.
Wear sensible shoes that don’t slip and slide or squash your feet.
Walk barefoot as much as you can.
Ditto comfy clothes and a well-fitting bra (or no bra, even nicer!).
Brush yer teeth.
Eat your veggies and drink water.
Move your body every day.
Keep a journal and/or talk about stuff with people you trust.
Take breaks and play.

Bubble baths and massages are well and good, but too many of us neglect the basic ways we need to keep our bodies and minds healthy.

Ps This is not a permission slip to beat yourself up, by the way: we all mess up on self care, it’s not a sign we are an unworthy person! Just do your best and give yourself some love.

Full disclosure:  I have never actually paid for a mani-pedi.

You protested! What now?

Protest is good, I’ve always done it, but don’t head home from a protest thinking you have done the work. It’s just the start! The real work is way less fun (but you can do most of it inside in short bursts – and you don’t have to do all of these!):

– Write to, phone, Tweet and meet with your MP and local Council representatives.
– Join a political party and be an active member.
– Join a Union.
– Join local campaign groups for issues you believe in.
– Get in some mailing lists to be alerted of campaigns and petitions: I recommend Avaaz
– Identify something you are good at and enjoy doing, and a cause you can do it for: bake for meetings, fundraise using your skills, create art about resistance, offer massages to activists and organisers, hold women’s circles, drum circles, talking circles, make good tea for people as they work, lend your admin skills.
– Speak to your friends and family about the issues, even when it’s hard to do. You don’t have to be aggressive, in fact to start with I’d recommend more listening than talking.
– Ditto work colleagues. Don’t be silent!
– Study: read about effective communication, read books by people of colour, people with disabilities, LGBTQIA+ people ….. learn what the world looks like from different perspectives.
– Follow folks who speak out on social media, learn from them, support and encourage them.
– Post on social media yourself. It doesn’t have to be constant: set a level you are comfortable with and decide your boundaries about dealing with comments.

You don’t have to do all of the above, pick a few. However I do recommend these two for everyone who can:

– Register to vote!
– Vote! Or spoil your ballot if you don’t like any of the candidates (spoilt ballots send a clearer message than no-shows).

And I recommend this one for everyone:

– Self care, self care, self care. Burnt out wrecks are less effective campaigners. You don’t have to be suffering and exhausted to make a difference!

Happy activism dearies! Love and solidarity!

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5 days into Tr*mpland

He’s silenced the Environmental Protection Agency. Their social media has been inactive since Thursday. Let that sink in for a moment.

The Environmental. Protection. Agency.

That struggle against greed and corporate interests destroying our viable biosphere for most life on earth?

You know, the one only us ‘mad hippies’ went on about and everyone else thought would never come to pass?

We’re here. It’s happening. It’s upon us. We are in the front row.

You can’t just leave this one to a few tree huggers to solve – time to step up now.

This tree hugger, for one, would dearly appreciate the backup at this point, it’s been a long lonely haul and we’re losing. We’re losing.

PS: You will need to do more than recycle.

Welcome new activists!

I having a slightly naughty chortle watching new activists have to go through the learning curve I had my whole 20s to work through, only they have about one week. Schadenfreude (a little) – but mainly admiration.

People in the USA have had a pretty intense week so far.  It’s good to see so many more political posts on Facebook and people going to protests and taking action for the first time ever.

There’s also a lot of very, very full-on debating going on about what the best way to be an activist is (clue:  nobody has the right answer).  We’re all learning, listening, getting our feelings hurt and ideas challenged.

Although I can’t be happy about how this all came about, I am pleased to see so many people stepping up.

Welcome to the revolution, my friends!

PS You never stop learning, you never stop being challenged, you’ll never get to be certain or perfect or right all the time – but you’ll be OK. I’m still bloody clueless but I seem to manage.