Create a better plan for your own self care

written by Erica Quam

Coaches have a tendency to put others first: and take care of everyone else's needs before their own. Coaches often tell the story that doing things for themselves is selfish or weak: like taking the day off, making time for quiet reflection, prioritizing a family event over work, etc. 

Self indulgence vs. Self care

For example: Eating dessert AFTER dinner vs. eating dessert FOR dinner. The child in all of us knows the fun choice. It may make us feel "good" in the moment - in a rebellious and defiant sort of way. We intuitively know the better choice. Self indulgence is a misguided attempt to make ourselves feel better. It's a temporary solution that quickly wears off. Self care fosters physical, psychological, & emotional health and improves our overall well-being.

Fast forward

Imagine yourself at the end of the season...overwhelmed, worn out, and just plain tired. This is often the tipping point: the smallest challenge seems huge and can bring coaches to the brink of burnout. It becomes more and more difficult for you to tap into your strengths, your wisdom, & your intuition. You are less effective, less connected, and less engaged.

Can you put yourself in those shoes...right now? What can you coach yourself to do NOW that would help you be better at the end of the year?

Take a few minutes over the holidays to create a better plan for your own self care.

So long as we skim across the surface of our lives at high speeds, it is impossible to dig down more deeply. People cannot move horizontally and vertically at the same time - Loehr and Schwartz

Here are a few qualities to keep in mind as you create your wellness plan:

Willingness vs. Willpower

There are so many things that require us to effort, to be persistent, and dig deep. Self care isn't one of those things. It's more about having a willingness to take care of yourself rather than the willpower to push through.

Allow yourself to do more things for yourself and let go of the story that you're being selfish. 

Being vs. Doing

Include more time for being instead of a long list of doing into your plan. Let go of the should's and have to's. Schedule time away from cell phones, computers, & email. Whenever you can, allow someone else be in charge. 

Try adding in yoga or meditation and a regular massage.

Prioritizing vs Procrastinating

I know a lot of coaches who have even put off their own health care because they are "too busy" doing things for everyone else. It's easy to bring work home and keep on grinding instead of going to bed. There are so many excuses and things to do instead of your own workout. Life is too short and you only have one body! 

Prioritize your sleep, your exercise, & your overall health.'s time to treat yourself with more love, care, and respect. Model this and teach your athletes how to take better care of themselves. The end result can be transformational!

Share one thing you will add into your self care plan in the comments below.