Welcome to day 20 of this year’s A to Z Challenge! I wrote about why I chose ‘Self Care’ as my theme for the challenge and I’m really enjoying writing about it during April. Today’s letter is ‘U’ so my self care word is ‘Understanding’.

I mean ‘understanding’ in several different contexts here, all of which are important to self care, or at least I think so!

Understanding Yourself

Do you understand yourself? Do you feel confident and comfortable in who you are, what you feel, what changes in your emotions mean? I believe that a deep understanding of your own being is one of the absolute key ingredients in looking after yourself.

Us humans are complex beings and we probably won’t ever fully understand ourselves and certainly won’t others, but we can figure out the main things about ourselves that can impact both positively and negatively upon our self care.

Do you understand your emotional triggers, the things that will put your mind and heart in a negative place? Doing so will make you prepared to face them, avoid them whenever possible and deal with them when they happen.

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Do you understand what makes you happy? This can be on a materialistic and an emotional level; If like me you enjoy a nice hot mocha then allow yourself that treat sometimes, just not so much that you feel guilty for spending money. A cuddle with your loved ones, the feel of the sun on your skin; understand what makes you happy and grasp it at any possible opportunity!

Understanding Others

Who are the people in your life with whom you feel content and happy? Understanding that some people are good for you and some aren’t is a tough thing at times and it can take a long time to figure out.

If you realise that a person is toxic to your wellbeing then walk away, if someone is positive to it then walk closer. No, it’s not always easy but it is always possible.

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Understanding Life

Life isn’t always positive or always negative and an understanding that achieving a good balance is the right goal, will help with your self care.

I can be a pessimist and I can also be very positive, so when I can feel the extremes pulling me around and my mind struggling to keep up, I look for the balance and it always helps.

What have you had to find an understanding of in order to look after yourself? Let me know in the comments below or get in touch on Facebook or Twitter.