We check our phone hundreds of times a day, but how often do we check in with ourselves? Something that I have written about several times before in previous blog posts is the concept of “checking in with yourself” to assess your feelings, state of wellness, and your current needs. But what I have not spoken about is how we actually do that. Sometimes in psychology we talk about things without clarity on how to start these emotional practices. Today I want to discuss what it really means to “check in” with yourself.
Step 1. Pause: Slow down, and take a deep breath. We cannot check in if we are still in a state of flow moving through our day. Taking the time and space to step back is necessary in order to be able to take in and assess our personal state of wellbeing.
Step 2. Reflect & Assess: Here we take an inventory of our current state in all formats: emotionally, cognitively, and physiologically. For many of us we are better at noticing some of these domains than we are at noticing others.
Step 3. Turn inwards and get curious about what is happening internally: Here we can ask ourselves what needs are not being met at this time. Specifically, what do you need more or less of? What do you need from yourself vs. what needs do you have for others at this time? What do we need to refuel of ourselves vs. what can we give or expect from others?
Checking in with oneself can be really helpful in giving us the opportunity to reflect and bring awareness to imbalances in our current state of wellness. But awareness is often not enough if it is not communicated with the people we live with. We often forget that our moods can appear invisible to others. After checking in with oneself it can be helpful to check in with your partner/family members about our current state of wellbeing and our needs from them as support systems.
Similar to the structure above, checking in with a partner may involve:
1) notifying them of our current state of mental health
e.g., “I’m feeling drained of energy today”
2) Notifying the partner what they can do to best support your needs
e.g., “It would be really appreciated if you could give me some space at this time, as I need the rest of the afternoon to practice self care”.
3) The partner repeats step 1 & 2 to communicate their current state of wellbeing and needs from you.
Have you been checking in with yourself and your partner lately?
What have you found are helpful components to a check in?
Let us know on our Wellness Wednesday social platforms.
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Jessica is a member of the clinical wellness and learning support team at FLEX Psychology. Jessica started Wellness Wednesday out of a desire to provide further opportunities for her clients to extend their wellness journey to all avenues of their life. You can learn more about Jessica by clicking here or by learning more about her and the clinical team at FLEX Psychology by clicking here.
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