In past few weeks I’ve facilitated a number of workshops for community social support organizations on the theme of pleasure and embodiment. As we worked with the idea of Pleasure Pause—frequent short breaks during the day to tune into the goodness of life—an obvious thought occurred to me.
Who needs self-care?
Professionals who work in helping professions particularly need exquisite self-care, as they extend a lot of energy to support others. But everyone needs it. And self-care is a by-product of a pleasure–centric life.
Life today is very fast paced. It’s the downside of living a modern, abundant life. We can have more, and do more—it all seems too good to pass up, all so important. But the price is that we expend is a lot energy to just keep the complexity of our lives together, and additionally to partake of all the good things that are available. But too much and too fast are serious deterrents to pleasure—the pleasure that supports our wellbeing.
The phrase exquisite self-care came to me as I worked with young professionals. Exquisite self-care means we do it regularly, dedicatedly, and we take it seriously. We acknowledge and follow-through on the reality that replenishment is necessary. Our bodies and spirits can’t thrive when we’re just putting out. Thriving requires regular and “just right” putting back in.
What “just right” self-care is for you?
The “just right” is: what’s “just right” for you? You’ve heard me say in the past that pleasure is a personal and very individual thing. What brings you pleasure may not be my cup of tea. I love hearing from people what their particular pleasure point is.
Recently I heard someone feeling buzz and satisfaction from knowing things are in order (sorting things, doing bookkeeping). I get it, but probably it doesn’t do it for most. But that’s okay! It doesn’t matter. It’s their pleasure zone! Go for it is all I can say.
What is a pleasure shift?
When we allow ourselves that individuality, and make it a priority, it constitutes self-care. When we engage in self-care intentionally, committedly and really savor and take it in, we feel good. To do self-care in this way probably means we will live our lives more slowly, and therefore do less, and have less—that in it self could be a pleasurable shift.
How can I make pleasure a priority?
Pleasure requires that commitment and intentionality. Pleasure and exquisite self-care go hand-in-hand. There’s little pleasure to be found racing around doing with out the breathing space to let all the goodness land and renew us.
I invite you to try on (even for a week) the slow is fast, less is more lifestyle, and see how your pleasure quotient and wellbeing bounce back.
Let me know how it goes.
Next entry: Facing a fear, self-confidence, and pleasure
“Madeline offers a safe space to explore what it is that blocks our capacity to live in pleasure. She supports us to recognize our unhealthy associations with pleasure, so we can finally open up to that which provides real power, serenity and love.”