AN IN­VI­TA­TION TO SELF-CARE

Why Learn­ing to Nur­ture Your­self Is the Key to the Life You’ve Al­ways Wanted

Foreword Reviews - - Foresight Family And Relationships -

Tracey Clean­tis, Hazelden Pub­lish­ing Soft­cover $15.95 (200pp), 978-1-61649-679-1

An In­vi­ta­tion to Self-care, by Tracey Clean­tis, LMFT, ex­plores the true mean­ing of tak­ing care of one­self. Go­ing well be­yond the idea that self-care in­volves sim­ply in­dul­gences and re­wards, the book of­fers seven prin­ci­ples to guide self-care and as­serts that only through reg­u­lar and sus­tained self-care can one hope to achieve self-ac­tu­al­iza­tion. The seven prin­ci­ples that the book as­serts are the foun­da­tion of self-care in­clude rec­og­niz­ing that it is a life­long prac­tice, self-love, tak­ing per­sonal re­spon­si­bil­ity for one’s ac­tions, notic­ing what mat­ters most, at­ten­tion and re­spon­sive­ness, re­al­is­tic ex­pec­ta­tions and prac­tices, and fi­nally, rec­og­niz­ing that self­care must hap­pen be­fore self-ful­fill­ment is pos­si­ble. Com­bin­ing quizzes, per­sonal sto­ries and in­ter­views into the text, the book of­fers in­sight into both self-care and self-sab­o­tage and helps in­di­vid­u­als ex­plore their own be­liefs and be­hav­iors and how these can be viewed in terms of self-care. This is not only an in­for­ma­tive book, but one that is easy to read and re­late to. The au­thor makes use of fa­mil­iar ref­er­ences, such as the food-guide pyra­mid and Maslow’s hi­er­ar­chy of needs, to il­lus­trate her points. Her writ­ing is gen­er­ally down-to-earth and hon­est, with just a touch of hu­mor. For ex­am­ple, in a chap­ter about tak­ing care of one’s body, she writes, “I’m not go­ing to im­part a lot of Thou shalts and Thou shalt nots to live by, es­pe­cially in re­gard to eat­ing low-carb, Pa­leo, wheat-free, meat­less, or what­not.” The mes­sage of In­vi­ta­tion to Self-care is a pow­er­ful one. The idea that not only is it okay to pri­or­i­tize tak­ing care of one­self but that it is ab­so­lutely nec­es­sary in or­der to care for one’s re­spon­si­bil­i­ties and to lead a ful­filled life is lib­er­at­ing. The in­for­ma­tion and guid­ance the book of­fers will help many to start on a health­ier, hap­pier life jour­ney.

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