you’re not as important as you think you are

this title is a bit of “click bait,” i’ll admit. but there’s method to the madness. meaning, it’s a deliberate hit to your ego so that you sit back and question yourself.

because this is a question and lesson i desperately needed this week but failed to find until it was too late. and now, here i am with acute tonsillitis and a weekend of lying in bed instead of attending a yoga retreat i’ve been looking forward to for a good 3 months.

so, let me get to the point.

my body was giving me hints waaaaaay before i lost my voice and developed glands the size of golf balls. but i wasn’t listening. i had too much to do at work. only i could do it. it had to be done now, by 5pm, tomorrow. deadlines!

i was too important to take time off and recuperate…. or that’s what i liked to think.

the reality? i have amazing work colleagues who would have helped pick up the load, if i had bothered to ask for help. instead, i kept on, “keeping on.” it was only when i turned up to class and my students told me that i looked like shit (thanks, guys) that i took a step back and realised i needed to chill the fuck out.

sadly, we are so programmed to believe that in order to prove ourselves in the workforce we have to be “hard” workers. hard workers who push ourselves to the brink. hard workers who rack up hours in excess of our actual paid rosters. this idea that replying to emails all night and all weekend is normal and expected is so damaging. when do we switch off? how is ignoring pain, fatigue and illness considered the hallmark of success? is it worth it if it’s at the expense of our health and happiness?

and here we come to the irony of the title of this post… you are, in fact, really important.

so important that you should start putting yourself first. i’ve said it once and i’ll say it a thousand times… self-care is not selfish. i guarantee the world will not implode if you take a sick day. looking after yourself doesn’t make you weak. it makes you smart. healthy workers are happier works, who are in turn, more productive workers.

so, if you’re unwell, stay in bed. if you have a family dinner, turn off your phone. work can call someone else in. the email can wait. i promise.

put it this way… do you live to work or work to live?

cara x

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truth bomb

the hard truth about recovering from anorexia.

 “I no longer wear exhaustion as a badge of honor.”

                                                                  – Brene Brown

i place so much of my self-worth on my appearance, achievements, academic excellence, prestigious degrees – as if these are the only markings of success. as if a thin body and a certificate make me worthy of love.

but does anything really matter, if i’m making myself sick in doing it?

i’m not happy. in fact, i’m fucking depressed and often have thoughts that I will be stuck in this cycle of addiction and restriction and complete loneliness for the rest of my life. that I’m a failure for not finding a career path that fits or being able to feed myself 3 meals a day.

but then there is a little part of me that wonders if there isn’t more to life than what we’re told. are we born to pay bills and die?

i am constantly trying to do more, be more, achieve more in the vague hope that i’ll suddenly be happy one day. but so much of this is tied up in what i think other people expect of me.

and so, i have made the decision to step back. i’ve deferred my studies and i’m going back to live with my parents and master the art of doing absolutely nothing.

i am slowly trying to remove the guilt and shame attached to not being in melbourne, working 9-5, earning heaps of money and the praise of my peers. trying to let go of the fear that i will be judged for having a mental illness.

i want to start making time to be present.  prioritising things like reading, meditating, resting, doing yoga, taking a bubble bath, lighting candles, playing with my pets and spending time with friends.

practicing the art of just ‘being’.

my body, my mind and my spirit need time to slow down.

and there’s nothing shameful in that.

cara x

*if you or anyone you knows needs help with an eating disorder, don’t hesitate to get in contact with me or give Eating Disorders Victoria a call on 1300 550 236.

am i a liability or are you a liar?

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This is for the women who are told that they are too much.

 

Too loud.

Too bold.

Too opinionated.

Too big.

Too small.

Too fierce.

Too bossy.

Too stubborn.

Too brazen.

Too serious.

Too confident.

Too sensitive.

Too intense.

Too bright.

Too sexual.

Too crazy.

 

And they think they can shame us,

Back into cages.

But lions can’t be kept.

And we refused to be owned.

 

Love is not subject to conditions,

And we are no subjects.

 

We are wild women.

 

– cara ’17