I’m still loving these #SelfCareDiaries posts and I hope are too. I have lots of other wonderful guests in the pipeline to share their wisdom, but if you have any suggestions or would like to be featured yourself, just drop me an email or private message on social media.
This week’s installment comes from the lovely Kat Nicolls, a self care advocate, and coach. I discovered Kat on Instagram and fell in love with her authenticity and courage to reveal so much of herself to her community. She generously shares so many raw insights on social media and her blog so I instantly knew that she would a wonderful guest to dig into some self care wisdom.
Over to you Kat…
What does self care mean to you?
Self-care to me is all about listening to myself and knowing how to take care of both my body and mind. Building up my self-awareness means I know my limits and can set boundaries. Some days self-care means practicing yoga and meditating, other days it means saying no to social invitations and binge-watching Grey’s Anatomy! I don’t believe there is a ‘wrong’ way to practice self-care, it’s all about getting to know yourself and what makes you feel your best.
Do you have any self care rituals/practices that really anchor your day?
I like to start and end every day with some journaling. I recently bought myself a ‘Self Journal‘ which prompts you to plan your day, write what you’re grateful for and set goals in the morning, then reflect on the days wins and lessons at night. Any form of journaling I think is great for developing self-awareness.
What does your morning routine look like?
I start with some journaling and planning for the day, then I must admit I have a little scroll on my phone… But I do try and not let my phone be the first thing I look at, which is where journaling helps! Then I get showered and dressed, listening to a podcast as I get ready for work. I’ll then eat some breakfast (usually granola) and head into the office. At the weekends I relish slow mornings. My boyfriend and I will have toast and coffee in bed, watching TV and talking before finally getting up and starting the day.
How do you make time for self care?
I schedule it into my week and give it as much importance as any other appointment or task in my week. I plan my week ahead on a Sunday so I can see how busy the week is looking and where I can fit in self-care. I try my best to have at least one evening and one full day free from work/blog-related tasks each week. I recently reduced my days at my day-job too, this meant a pay cut, but it means I can put more energy into my blog and life coach training without sacrificing self-care. So I consider it an investment.
During a challenging point in your life what key things got you through?
I’ve had several times in my life that has been challenging due to mental health problems. During those times writing was something that really helped – when I was battling an eating disorder as a teen, writing in my journal felt like a release. And more recently when I started struggling with anxiety, journaling and noting down my thoughts and worries was incredibly beneficial. If I ever feel stuck or overwhelmed, writing it out is always my go-to and sometimes it even spills over onto my blog!
What’s in your self care toolkit? Which items bring you most comfort?
Meditation, yoga and journaling and three tools that always come through for me. Often though, what brings me the most comfort is simply giving myself space and time to curl up on my sofa, read a book and listen to music. Yes, there’s always *something* else I could be doing, but giving myself that relaxation and pleasure has become just as important as work for me – I can’t do my best work if I’m burnt out
What quote really resonates with you and why?
There are so many great quotes out there, but one that really resonated with me recently is this, from Maya Angelou: “Success is liking yourself, liking what you do and liking how you do it.” My world changed when I learned to like who I was and it’s helped me find a career path I love. The word success is so muddied with societal perceptions of money and power, so I love Maya’s interpretation.
What are you currently working on? Anything that you would like to share?
I’ve recently launched my services as a self-worth coach! I’ve learnt so much in both my personal and professional life about self-worth, self-love, and self-care, and so I’m hoping to share this with clients struggling with similar issues. My mission with my blog and writing, in general, has always been to support people to realise their own sense of worth and I’m excited to be taking this a step further with coaching.