Self-Care Interview with Chloe Shapter
"As my mental health dipped, I knew just how important self-care is and that I needed to take some time for me. I definitely learned how much impact self-care has had on me."
Chlo is a mum, a wife and a dog mum. In lockdown last year, she decided to make an Instagram account (@selflovechlo) to show her self love and self acceptance journey. She also talks about self care and mental health. Chlo is also part of a fabulous group of women on Instagram (@wearebodyconfident) where they share their own experiences with different topics in the hope that they can empower people to embrace themselves, just as they are. They talk about a variety of things from mental health to their favourite outfits.
What does self-care mean to you?
Self-care is so important to me. As a mum, I’m usually running around after my 2 year old so I like to take a few minutes out wherever I can. Even if that’s just drinking a cup of tea whilst it’s still hot.
Has your perception of self-care changed, particularly with the events of last year?
Last year, my mental health really suffered. I’d gone from working part time and spending time with my family and friends, to not leaving the house. I worked from home whilst trying to be a mum at the same time and we hadn’t long moved into our house which needed a lot of work. Life just got on top of me. I realised I hadn’t been practicing my self care routine and I’d completely forgotten about myself.
As my mental health dipped, I knew just how important self-care is and that I needed to take some time for me. I definitely learned how much impact self-care has had on me.
What are some of the misconceptions around self-care?
I think when people hear “self-care” they just think it’s about going for a walk, doing yoga and having a bath. But self care is so much more than that and I think it’s really important to the individual person. We don’t all enjoy the same things so why would self-care be a generic task!?
What are some of your favourite self-caring activities/self-care routine or affirmations?
I love doing crystal meditation and oracle card readings. I like to spend at least 10 minutes a day to listen to some calming music and just take a breather. Meditation always makes me feel refreshed and clears my mind. Some days I also like to have a quiet bath and a cup of tea before I go to bed as it just makes me feel so relaxed, almost like my troubles of the day have been washed away.
I keep a notepad in my bedside table and before I go to bed, I write down 3 things that I’m grateful for from that day. A few years ago I had hypnotherapy and that was one of the tasks I would do every night. I found that by doing that, it really made me think about my day. Especially when I’ve not had a great day and it puts more of a positive spin on it. It doesn’t have to be anything huge either, some of mine have just been “I had a lovely meal for tea”.
Going out for a little walk does wonders too! We like to take the dog and go for a family walk, jump in puddles and just explore.
How do you make sure you’re regularly prioritising self-care?
In the past I sometimes would forget to prioritise self care and that’s when I would notice my mental health start to dip. Because I’ve been in such a low place before, I know I don’t want to feel like that on a daily basis. I have such a good routine now as I have practiced self care for a little while. It’s second nature to me.
However, when I have a down day, I like to know that I have something that will pick me back up. I keep a box in my wardrobe with things in it that make me feel happy and bring me comfort. It can be anything from chocolate and bubble bath to my mindful books and colouring. I find it helps that even on days where I don’t feel great, I can take something from that box to brighten my day a little.
Why is it so important to keep going even when you’re feeling better in yourself?
I like to keep going with my self-care routine to just keep myself happy. It can be so hard trying to feel better when you already feel low. Even just doing one self-care task a day can make such a big difference.
Check out Chlo's Instagram @selflovechlo