Yesterday was simply amazing. I was asked by my former cohort member to do a presentation on “Self-Care and Mental Health” to a group of undergraduates conducting summer research at Howard University. This presentation turned into a roundtable discussion concerning the actual definition of “self-care.” And the group agreed that a huge part of self-care is creating healthy boundaries with other individuals. In addition to creating boundaries, they all shared that its important to create a healthy support system while in school to prepare them all for the world after undergrad.
I found this to be interesting because just a year ago, I was struggling with the same definition of self-care while pursuing my doctorate at Howard. This Sankofa moment, really spoke to me and my current situation, that I didn’t realize how different elements of my life were projected into the group process. I found myself able to reflect different emotions that each of the students spoke about through the discussion. I find it very important to be aware of this feeling because literally just this time last year, I made the decision to not to return to Howard in order to preserve my self-care, mental health and also my passion as a healer.
Sometimes, these difficulties create a urgency for you to do what you are called to do. To accept the responsibility that is placed upon your abilities. And this is a burden that is too heavy to carry when you are barred down with the agendas of others. I realized last year in the month of June that I cannot fight a system that is not created for me so in order to effect change, I started my own business. I accepted the opportunity to create and do for myself. Even though the journey may not be ideal, I came to understand that this journey is necessary for me.
My boundaries are important for me to not only to protect myself but also my vision. And this what the message, I conveyed to the students yesterday. In order to believe in yourself, its important to challenge yourself to take care of yourself. Now that’s a lot of “self” lol. But who else will do the work for you. This is the ultimate lesson learned from the healing circle, “Take Care of Yourself.”