Do You Secure Your Safety Mask Before Helping Others?
Image: Luzena Adams for Faint Magazine
You know that pre-flight video – the one where the chirpy flight attendant explains all the safety procedures before taking off? Do you ever pay attention to what she is saying? Well, I may glance up from my book while it’s playing, but rarely do I give much thought to her words. Except yesterday on my trip back from CA, something felt different. Perhaps it was an overtired openness that came from taking the 7am flight, but part of her monologue kept ringing in my ears –secure your own safety mask before helping others. It hit me, this is something we can apply to everyday life.
Clearly, I don’t mean we should walk around with oxygen strapped to our faces for the school drop off, or while heading to work. But I do think it’s crucial to take care of ourselves by scheduling the time needed (and deserved!) to reconnect, and restore our sense of being. To nourish ourselves from the inside out.
What does that mean? To fulfill the essentials — get enough sleep and eat well– absolutely. But it also goes beyond the basics. It means to serve yourself without feeling like you’re overindulging. Or even worse — being selfish. While every day can’t be declared Spa Day, there’s no reason not to take 15 minutes daily for some ME time.
During the week, I like to wake up super early — before anyone else has stirred– to drink my coffee and write. It’s only 15 minutes, and it’s all I need to get aligned with the day, or secure my oxygen mask first. When the alarm goes off at 7 to wake everyone else, I’m much better equipped to help them get ready.
Other ways I take care of myself include a regular yoga practice, exercise, facials, massage (I love the 15 min chair massage at the mani/pedi place) and meals with friends.
The activity can be big (weekend getaways) or little (5 deep breaths). It just needs to have the purpose of nourishing your mind body and soul.
How do you secure your oxygen mask first?