How do DBTOC Staff Self-Care?

Posted by DBT Center of Orange County in Benefits of DBT, Mindfulness, Wellness

We at DBTOC believe self-care is vital to our well-being. When we don’t take care of ourselves we can feel exhausted, depleted and resentful. On the other hand, when we are practicing self-care, we tend to have more energy, feel better, think more clearly and make steps to accomplish our goals and live a life aligned with our values.

Our team has been revamping our personal self-care routines and learning new ways to support each other’s wellness. We attended a workshop to be curious about our current self-care practices and brainstorm ways to improve our regimens. We attended a yoga class as a team. We want to now share with you some of our team’s self-care tips!

“Self-Care” is such a buzzword today; what does the term “self-care” mean to you?

Self-care is the practice of taking care of yourself first and foremost- body, mind and soul. SELF-CARE IS NOT ABOUT BEING SELFISH OR SELF-CENTERED!  For those of us most especially in ‘people-helping’ professions, failure to practice and neglect mindful ‘self-care’ can make us less effective in our jobs.

Here are insights from our team:

Something that is often left out is that self-care is unique to each individual person and can change as you change and your lifestyle changes. Self-care for me may include bubble baths, yoga classes and minimum 8 hours of sleep a night. A friend of mine needs to interact with her friends and family at least once a day and feel productive in some way. Another might need to exercise at least 20 minutes a day and journal as part of his morning routine.”

-Nora Josephson, LPC, RYT, DBT Case Manager & Skills Trainer

“Self-care is honoring my body, mind & spirit’s needs.”

-Renée Peyton, LCSW, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

How do you incorporate self-care into your busy daily life?

“I incorporate self-care into my busy daily life by practicing gratitude before I go to sleep. I write a list of twenty things I am grateful for about myself. This can include internal and external qualities and also highlights my support system. I hand write it in my gratitude journal and love to go back and re-read things from the past. I have noticed that this ties directly into self-care because it changes my entire mood! It lifts my spirit and motivates me to also focus on my physical health.

-Catherine E. Mann, BS, Patient Services Representative

What do you do for self-care?

“Something I do for self-care is that when I wake up the first thing I do is have time for myself. It is a part of my morning routine. I sit out on my patio with a nice cup of coffee and say three things I am grateful for, something meaningful I did the day before and doing a 10-minute meditation on my Calm app. That helps set a positive tone for my day!”

-Carolyn Huckabay, LCSW, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

I love to do Pilates three to four times a week.  I also enjoy the late-night meditation and restorative yoga class at the yoga studio across the road from my house.  After a long work day, there is nothing better than packing my yoga mat under my arm, together with a lavender aromatherapy mist, and unwinding from the stressors of my day.  Sound bath healing classes and regular Thai massage are other self-care practices I enjoy.”

-Michele Lob, PsyD, MFT, CEDS, Executive Director

“I work out at home or at the gym, listen to music when I’m getting ready or in the car, enjoy my morning shake and an evening cup of Teeccino, use eucalyptus and sugar scrubs often, get hot stone massages once per month, light espresso and cinnamon candles in my kitchen in the morning, listen to nature sounds sometimes before bed, open my patio door in the morning to listen to the birds, go to my chiropractor, eat well, put the tennis channel on (even if I’m not watching because the sound of the tennis ball relaxes me), beach walks/hikes, deep breaths/yoga/pilates, go for mani-pedis, I could go on… :).”

-Nicole Messuri, LMFT, BCBA, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

“My self-care routine varies from day to day, but my day always incorporates at least two of the following: yoga, exercise (cardio and/or weights), spending time with my boyfriend, snuggling up with my fur-baby Zander, calling and talking to my family on the East Coast, or pampering (massage, nails, hair, etc). My day always ends with coming home and lighting a candle (the scents change with the seasons), turning the lights low, and spraying my “stress relief” and lavender spray on my pillows/sheets. And then some more Zander snuggles.”

-Sarah Lyndon, PsyD, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

“I do a spin class a few times per week, eat healthy foods and drink lots a blend of vitamins, minerals and nutrients to keep my energy up!

-Jennifer Plisko, LCSW, Clinical Director

“My self-care regimen is ever changing from day to day, but a few things stay consistent. I journal every day. The journal I use has prompts for daily intentions, gratitudes, actions and affirmations for the morning and more personal growth/reflection questions in the evening. These questions help me to tune in, practice mindfulness and practice gratitude throughout the day. Other self-care practices that I sprinkle into my week include: yoga, meditation, hot bubble baths, reading, Netflixing, eating healthy foods and meal prepping, and spending quality time with friends and family.”

-Nora Josephson, LPC, RYT, DBT Case Manager & Skills Trainer

“I pray, exercise, read, speak affirmations aloud, set goals, relax, mediate, spend time in nature, cook, snuggle with my children, talk about my concerns, take care of my body with fresh whole foods and high-quality supplements.”

-Renée Peyton, LCSW, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

“A lot of my self-care is dedicated to self-soothing. My nervous system runs a little anxious and I notice I mostly need things that help me soothe and calm my system. Most mornings I spray eucalyptus spray in my shower. It makes me feel like I’m at the spa and is immediately relaxing and invigorating at the same time. In the evenings before bed, I heat up a microwavable aromatherapy bag and place it on my stomach. It relaxes and comforts me. Additionally, I often drink warm Golden Milk before bed. This is 8 ounces of coconut (or other alternative) milk mixed with a half teaspoon blend of turmeric, cinnamon and ginger, heated or served over ice. It is my understanding that this mixture has some health benefits, but mostly it just feels calming and soothing and readies me for a good sleep.”

-Kathy Purdy, AMFT, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

Why is self-care vital?

“Not taking care of my own physical and emotional needs creates resentment and self-sabotage behaviors, like eating an entire chocolate bar.”

-Michele Lob, PsyD, MFT, CEDS, Executive Director

“Self-care is vital because you can’t take care of anyone else if you don’t take care of yourself! Plus, it sends the message to myself that I am worthy of being taken care of and helps me to stay healthy in mind, body and spirit so I am capable of doing the things that I want to do.”

-Carolyn Huckabay, LCSW, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

“For me, self-care practice is vital because it makes me feel grounded, connected, and happy. Without self-care, I think I wouldn’t be as productive and focused and happy.”

-Nicole Messuri, LMFT, BCBA, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

“Self-Care is vital because if we don’t take care of ourselves, then we can’t help in supporting others. One of my favorite quotes is, “You can’t pour from an empty cup, take care of yourself first.”  I think we have to be mindful to not only promote self-care, but also model self-care as part of our everyday lives.”

-Sarah Lyndon, PsyD, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

“Without self-care I get run down and cannot give to others, which I value deeply and enjoy.”

-Renée Peyton, LCSW, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

What is your favorite self-care practice? 

“My favorite self-care practice is my workouts. If I don’t work out, I don’t feel connected to my body, so I like a great workout in the morning, whether that’s going to the gym or working out at home.”

-Nicole Messuri, LMFT, BCBA, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

“I’m an introvert, so my favorite self-care is taking time alone to relax & recharge, whether it’s spending time in nature or cuddling up on the couch to relax & unwind.”

-Renée Peyton, LCSW, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

Which self-care practice would I never do without? 

“I would NEVER skimp on sleep…if at all possible. Sleep is nature’s nurse and she comes and heals me while I slumber. I would also never skimp on hugs. Physical touch is a miracle worker. If I can’t get enough hugs I find a massage as quickly as possible and get my “Touch account” filled up. I have a personal masseuse who comes right to my home. He is a combination of physical therapist, coach and guru for your body and mind.”

-Cindy Finch, LCSW, Family Services Specialist

How do you know when you need to change up your self-care routine?

“Sometimes I throw on my footie jammies and go about my normal day (at home). When I see and feel that level of relaxation, it reminds me I’m recharging and not to be too ambitious with myself for the day and just let the “downtime” fill me back up. Hidden perk: My family also sees me in jammie mode and they tend to lean in to the lounge with me and snuggle up for some rest, too.”

– Cindy Finch, LCSW, Family Services Specialist

How do you incorporate mindfulness into your self-care practice?

“Each morning, as soon as I wake up, I’m trying to slow myself down. I resist the urge to grab my phone and check emails or social media. Rather, I allow a few minutes to become aware of the quiet beginning of a new day as I bring my hand to my chest to practice Shawna Shapiro‘s ‘Good morning, Kathy. I love you.’”

-Kathy Purdy, AMFT, DBT Program Clinician and Skills Facilitator

I love the app ‘Grateful’.  I create a daily entry whether it be a special photo, quote or story.  This app keeps me mindful of all my blessings and helps to ‘soften’ my journey.

-Michele Lob, PsyD., MFT, CEDS, Executive Director

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