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Self-care Is Not Selfish

By Wendy Bjork
March 28, 2022

Have you ever heard that self-care is selfish? Whoever came up with that phrase was so far from correct! It’s really important to make self-care and self-love a priority.

It’s not about spending a day at the spa – it’s the small everyday actions we need to fit into our day.

You need to take care of you. Do you make sure your basic needs are met? 

This includes drinking enough water throughout the day, taking restroom breaks as soon as you’ve given the inkling instead of making yourself wait, having a snack when you’re hungry, resting (different from napping) and sleeping.

Women are often times portrayed as the pillar of the family. To be everything to everyone.

Receiving a diagnosis of any kind is a traumatic event. And since life moves fast around us, we are sometimes left to deal with it on our own.

When diagnosed with a life-changing and life-limiting illness such as multiple sclerosis, it can really disrupt our lived experience. The goal is to find joy and happiness somewhere in our day as well as living better, breathing better, sleeping better and just feeling better!

Your first step is a decision. The decision to accept yourself and the MS. Instead of “fighting” it, know that none of this is your fault. 

I used to call myself a Warrior since I’ve been living with MS since the late 80s. I thought being a fighter meant I never quit. When in fact, being a warrior really has an entirely different meaning.

A true warrior is invincible because she contests with nothing.

The way of a Warrior is based on humanity, love and sincerity; the heart of martial valor is true bravery, wisdom, love and friendship.

Emphasis on the physical aspects of warriorship is futile, for the power of the body is always limited.

It’s all about loving and accepting ourselves for who we are. When we see ourselves as a fighter, we are actually giving more power to whatever we are trying to resist. This also shows up in our body through elevated stress levels, elevated cortisol levels and putting our central nervous system on high alert, which could cause symptoms to kick in. So, avoiding fighter mode is really so much better for us!

One small step towards accepting yourself is every time you pass a mirror, either silently or out loud, give yourself a compliment.

I know, it sounds silly, but it helps with liking yourself again! And it’s hard to be mad at someone you like, right?

It’s time for us to stand up and live life on our own terms.

Wendy Bjork

Wendy is an MS Warrior from northwest Wisconsin where she lives with her two teenaged sons and husband. After 35 years of dealing with the challenges of MS, she now empowers other women living with the disease to improve their mind, body, environment and relationships to help them regain control of their life. She is a #1 Amazon International Best Selling author, and you can follow her story on Facebook, Instagram and on her website at heartsofwellness.com.

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