October: Prioritizing Your Health
If there’s one thing we’re not missing out on these days, it’s information. We are constantly inundated with answers. Rarely do we find ourselves saying something with 100% confidence without fact checking it first. On the one hand this is great! We’re no longer readily passing on that random piece of information, your neighbour’s mum gave you on the sidewalk this morning — unless it’s some really hot neighbourhood goss... But on the other hand, we have a hard time trusting our instincts as well.
Being healthy is an important measure for a lot of people, but you may not always know how to prioritize your wellness. You may have the best intentions, but your busy life can get in the way. We also tend to put our complete faith in the hands of others or the internet (oops).
Yet having a voice when it comes to your own health, whether that be mental, hormonal, physical, spiritual, etc. is so very important. You have a right to feel valued, empowered and in charge of your own body.
This month — after a very long and shaky year — we’re going to focus on us. It’s time we prioritize our health, and focus on ways we can gain confidence to navigate the systems and build self-advocacy skills along the way.
Deep breath in, deep breath out — we’ve reached the end of October! Can you believe it? Thank you for following along with our intention this month, our whole team has learned so much here at Mary Young and hope you have too! If somebody asked you to rate your lifestyle in terms of how well you look after your body and mind, what score would you give yourself? Do you think that score has improved as of late? I hope so!
Putting your health first isn’t always easy. As a student, a young professional, a new mum, an artist… whatever you do, I understand the constant battle of trying to balance your health with everything else going on, and, sometimes, your health gets put on the back burner. But remember if you don’t make time to take care of yourself, you can’t fully be there for those you love. As much as it may seem self-interested, taking care of yourself is an important priority that allows you to better show up for everything and everyone else.
If you identify as a woman or member of the LGBTQ2 community, stats show that these marginalized groups have a harder time advocating for themselves or being taken seriously by healthcare professionals. Learning to trust your gut and advocate for yourself is important. I get it, no one wants to be seen as a Karen — but there’s a big difference when it comes to advocating for yourself and just plain complaining about things that don’t affect you. You deserve the best possible treatment.
Treatment also comes in many forms. Keep a check on your mental, physical and even spiritual needs. Joining community groups or forums is a great way to learn about services in your area, specialized doctors and meet other like minded people.
Finally, we get it; navigating a healthcare system is no easy task — frankly, it can be completely intimidating! Keep reminding yourself what your goal is with an appointment. Write down your symptoms and even take a friend.
When you realize that you are in control of your health, it is empowering. Be kind to yourself, and start where you need to start. Learning to prioritize your own needs is a process, but you don’t have to get it perfect to see long-term benefits.