The Art of Extreme Self Care


The Art of Extreme Self-Care                                      Author       Cheryl Richardson Publisher   Hay House, 2009    Rating        4- Star

The practice of extreme      self-care forces us to make choices and decsions that honour and reflect the true nature of our soul.

This book is a simple and practical guide that offers the reader 12 strategies to assist people to transform their life one month at a time.  The book covers a range of topics and action steps to implement over a 12 month period (or faster if you are like me!) that ensure that you are really looking after yourself.  It is based on choosing habits that build resilience and self care as the primary foundation for all or your decisions and actions, and setting a new standard for living your best life.

Chapter topics include:

1.End the legacy of deprivation – When we feel deprived we feel empty and unfulfilled.

Identify what you feel deprived of and then make critical changes to address them.  This involves really listening to your inner wisdom and saying yes to things that support you and no tp things that don’t serve you.

2. Mirror, mirror on the wall – When we learn to really love ourselves we set ourselves up for joy, abundance, wellness, meaningful experiences and the like.

Do “mirror – work” – Based on the work of Louise Hay, practice looking yourself deeply in the mirror each day and telling yourself how much you love yourself (no self-consciousness required!)

3. Let me disappoint you – When we say yes to things that we really don’t want we feel frustrated and stressed.  We don’t like to say no because we don’t like to let people down – but we are letting ourselves down by not maintaining limits on our time and energy. Saying no with grace and clarity to things that we don’t want to do is a fine art!

4. The power of rhythm and routine – when we set up daily, weekly, monthly routines we stay in our flow better and can schedule in time for ourselves to renew and reenergise rather than it being on a whim.  This includes sleep time, exercise time, family time, and self time.

5. Take your hands off the wheel – Mastering the art of letting go of control and receiving help.  Allowing other people to help with things their way rather than having to be a “control perfectionist” wanting them to do it your way is a major deposit in extreme self care.  Ask for help and let other people help you their own way.

6. The absolute no list (my favorite!) – You can’t make sanity out of an insane situation.

Some of the things on Cheryl’s absolute no list are: “I no longer…”

  • Rush
  • Live without pets
  • Compromise my needs to keep peace with anyone
  • Eat meat
  • Argue with people who see debate as a sport
  • Tolerate or participate in gossip
  • Deal with difficult life situations alone
  • Take phone calls during meals
  • Go to work when I am sick
  • Finish reading books that lose my interest
  • Feel the need to check my email multiple times a day (plus lots more ideas).

1. Soul-loving space – creating spaces that make your heart sing, are energising and a joy to be in.

Examine, evaluate, eliminate and enhance each room of your home and workplace to reflect the essence of you.

2. You’re so sensitive – Protecting your sensitivity as a real asset and gift rather than “toughening  up”.  It involves honouring who we are at our very core.  Some practices include:

  • Being in the moment (mindfulness) rather than worrying about the future or the past.
  • Taking time for silence to reenergise.
  • Reducing exposure to violence by turning off the news etc.
  • Putting limits on having toxic people in your life.
  • Managing technology rather than being driven by it.

3. Tune-up time – Taking charge of your health and maintaining optimum wellbeing.

4. Does that anger taste good? – Anger gives us a message that our boundaries have been crossed. Extreme self care measures include using your voice to speak up when required.

  • Speaking up to bullies or rude people when appropriate
  • Walking away if necessary
  • Maintaining restraint while you think it through if that serves you better.

5. Wake-up! – when we practice extreme self care it starts to afford us time, space and energy to devote to the things that bring us joy.  Take action on the things you are passionate about. 

Quit being a martyr and focus on getting your needs met.


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