© 2019 by Nicole Steward, MSW 

Self-care is a RADICAL act of self-preservation.

Audre Lorde, Poet

Radical Self-Care

RADICAL: affecting the fundamental nature of something; far-reaching or thorough; forming the root.

Those of us in the human services fields (social workers, nurses, therapists, educators,  etc.) often tend to disregard our own care or minimize it in relation to those we serve. Sometimes we care so much about other people that we sacrifice our own needs without even noticing.  And we can do this for quite some time, until the lack of care we've given ourselves shows up negatively in our health, well-being, or professional choices.  This is called burn-out.  The antidote is SELF-CARE. By cultivating deep, courageous self-care practices, what I call RADICAL TENDENCIES, we can stay in this challenging work long enough to see our efforts make a positive impact in the world.

BASIC: forming an essential foundation or starting point; fundamental.

  • Survival needs

    • Food

    • Hydration

    • Sleep

    • Movement

  • Emotional regulation

  • Reptilian brain functions

  • Root & Sacral chakras

  • Physiological & Safety (Maslow's)

DEEP: extending or situated far in or down from the outer edge or surface; profound awareness and understanding.

  • Relational needs

    • Connection w/sentient beings

    • Understanding of past traumas

    • Attachment cycles

    • Limbic system funcitoning

  • Emotional authenticity

  • Mammalian brain functions

  • Solar Plexus, Heart & Throat chakras

  • Love & Belonging (Maslow's)

COURAGE: the ability to do something that frightens one; strength in the face of pain or grief.

  • Intellectual/Spiritual needs

    • Identification of identity/passion

    • Clearing of obstacles

    • Conscious exploration

    • Solidarity between ideas & action

  • Emotional intelligence

  • Cognitive brain functions

  • 3rd Eye & Crown chakras

  • Esteem & Self-Actualization (Maslow's)