Embracing Self-Care: Why Women Should Release Guilt and Prioritise Exercise

In the bustling rhythm of modern life, women often find themselves juggling numerous roles and responsibilities. From nurturing careers to caring for families and managing households, the demands can feel never-ending. In this whirlwind of obligations, it’s all too easy for women to neglect their own wellbeing, especially when it comes to exercise. But what if I told you that letting go of the guilt surrounding self-care, particularly exercise, could be the key to unlocking a happier, healthier you?

Let’s address the elephant in the room: guilt. 

Many women experience a nagging sense of guilt when they take time for themselves, especially if it means prioritising exercise over other tasks. They worry about neglecting their families, dropping the ball at work, or simply not being productive enough. However, it’s crucial to recognise that prioritising your own wellbeing is not selfish; it’s essential for your physical health, mental clarity, and overall happiness.

Exercise isn’t just about fitting into a certain dress size or conforming to societal beauty standards. It’s about feeling strong, energised, and confident in your own skin. Regular physical activity has been shown to reduce stress, boost mood, improve sleep, and increase overall quality of life. By making exercise a priority, women can enhance their ability to tackle daily challenges with resilience and vitality.

So, how can women let go of the guilt and make exercise a non-negotiable part of their routine? Here are a few strategies to consider:

  • Reframe your mindset: Instead of viewing exercise as a luxury or indulgence, recognise it as an essential investment in your health and wellbeing. Shift your perspective from feeling guilty about taking time for yourself to understanding that self-care is a fundamental necessity.
  • Set realistic goals: Understand that exercise doesn’t have to be time-consuming or strenuous to be effective. Set achievable goals that fit into your schedule and align with your interests and abilities. Whether it’s a 20-minute home workout, a brisk walk during your lunch break, or a yoga session before bed, every little bit counts.
  • Involve your support network: Communicate with your family, friends, and colleagues about the importance of prioritising exercise. Enlist their support in finding time for physical activity and encourage them to join you whenever possible. Building a supportive community can help alleviate feelings of guilt and reinforce positive habits.
  • Practice self-compassion: Be kind to yourself on your fitness journey. Understand that there will be days when things don’t go as planned, and that’s okay. Instead of dwelling on setbacks or missed workouts, focus on the progress you’ve made and the effort you’re putting in. Remember, consistency is key, but perfection is not required.
  • Celebrate your victories: Take time to acknowledge and celebrate your achievements, no matter how small. Whether it’s reaching a fitness milestone, mastering a new exercise, or simply making exercise a regular part of your routine, give yourself credit for your efforts. Celebrating your successes can help reinforce positive behaviours and boost your motivation to continue prioritising your wellbeing.

It’s time for women to let go of the guilt surrounding exercise and embrace self-care as a non-negotiable aspect of their lives. By prioritising physical activity, women can improve their health, boost their mood, and enhance their overall quality of life. 

Remember, you deserve to prioritise your own wellbeing, guilt-free. So pop on those ballet slippers, carve out some time for yourself, and take a step towards a healthier, happier you. You’re worth it!

Breaking Ballet’s unique ballet-inspired workouts are tailored for perimenopausal and menopausal women to help them future proof their bodies at the same time as looking after the here and now.

Sarah is the founder of Breaking Ballet, a unique online ballet fitness programme for busy women.

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