“Every time you’re given a choice between disappointing someone else and disappointing yourself, your duty is to disappoint that someone else. Your job throughout your entire life, is to disappoint as many people as it takes to avoid disappointing yourself.” – Glennon Doyle

I often find it difficult to prioritise myself. Having attended a session recently by LaMecia Butler, who spoke about the importance of prioritising oneself has helped me reflect on how I can practice self-care effectively.

The most significant takeaways for me from the session were: 

1. It is vital that we are our own P0 (Priority zero (P0) is considered an essential feature in the technology sector). We must listen to our body and mind and not push ourselves beyond what we can do. We need to honour ourselves.

2. Plan for plans – planning is critical for prioritising. We need to decide what tasks to complete personally, in addition to work-related tasks.

3. Doing a vision exercise will help us find out what our most important goals (personally and professionally) are, what our top priorities will be in our lives, what barriers and blockers will prevent us from achieving them, and how to establish safety nets and accountability partners to attain our goals.

4. It is important to establish/create boundaries to give ourselves time and celebrate our wins in a way that is natural to us.

5. We should not be afraid to ask for help – it may be challenging and tough, but must remain humble to seek help. 

6. No is a complete sentence. Learning to say no is difficult but essential. Our no is as powerful as our yes. If we say yes and spread ourselves too thin, is our yes really that valuable? At the same it, it may also prevent others from growth and development.

7. Organisations can support staff to prioritise themselves by giving them quiet days, encouraging staff to adjust meeting times (for example, setting meetings for 25/55 minutes and providing that 5-minute breathing time) and recognising people for their accomplishments. 

8. It is important to find our community/space/people who are supportive of our endeavours and goals.

9. Being honest and transparent with ourselves and others is essential.

Being able to prioritize ourselves is a fundamental skill that we all need to learn as we are all trying to keep up with everything going on around us. The importance of self-care cannot be overstated – it is not a luxury but an absolute necessity.

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