Pilates Teacher Self-Care part 2 + resilience

One day in college, one of my professors asked us all to bring something to class that inspired us for show and tell (Yes, I had show and tell in college, gimme a break, I was a dance major, ok?). While at the time I didn’t put much thought into it, and just brought a picture of my favorite dance company, a classmate brought her journal from middle school.

She explained to us that while she kept most of her journals, this particular one was from a period in her life where she experienced a lot of very unfortunate events. She often looked back to her own writings, and this one in particular because it reminded her of all of the things she has literally had to overcome. It served as an example, to her, of her own strength so that when she was feeling overwhelmed or in need of a pick-me-up, she could use herself as an example of how resilient she was.

That idea has stuck with me for a very long time, and I often look back to the past to remind myself of my own resilience when I fall out of routine, or fail at something.

Failing at self-care, or falling off the self-care wagon is something I have personally struggled with from the time I realized self-care was a thing. I am a planner and a list-maker and I feel sometimes as though all of the things I need to do to take care of myself and keep my tank full are overwhelming, and just another pile of things to do on a seemingly never ending pile of other things to do.

So especially when I am feeling depleted, going to that workout, or choosing whole, healthy food over that box of mac and cheese feels like a lot of freakin work. So I fall off the self-care wagon. Sometimes I literally jump off, because it feels better to not GAF. Sometimes this is dangerous, because an extended period off the wagon can lead to forgetting completely about number 5 in my self-care list: Love Thyself. And that is where the resilience factor comes in, and I use that to pull myself back into number 5, which helps me get back to 1-4.

Self-care is so important for us as Pilates teachers. We spend so much time and attention giving to others, that it really is a must to keep our tanks full, in order to not get depleted from doing our work. Make sure to check in with yourself. If your self care list feels like just another chore list or list of things to do in your busy life, then it is not doing its job., and it’s time to re-evaluate.

Look carefully at what is working and what is not. Do what feels right. Forgive yourself for indulging, or taking a break. Do you have places in your self care routine that haven’t been working for you? Name it, figure out why, throw it out, and try out something else in its place. Fall off the wagon, or jump off, then use your resilience muscles to pull yourself out of a slump and try again.