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What To Do When You Can’t Think Of Anything Good To Do

November 7, 2017

As I shared with you here, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is one of my all-time favorite movies.  When I first started this blog, (a year ago this month!!) the line “you’re not dying, you just can’t think of anything good to do” really kept coming back to me as the heart of what I wanted […]

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As I shared with you here, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is one of my all-time favorite movies.  When I first started this blog, (a year ago this month!!) the line “you’re not dying, you just can’t think of anything good to do” really kept coming back to me as the heart of what I wanted to write about.  I am passionate about sharing self care ideas with the whole world, because I’m so convinced the whole world needs self care!  
In the past, I’ve given you lists for how to beat boredom, how to practice creativity, and just a general list of self care suggestions.  I’ve shared how to feel more peaceful, ways to practice self love, and suggestions for adding hygge to your life.  And I’m just getting started, my Besties! 
But what do you do when you have a lot of things you like to do…perhaps so many that you can’t decide?  Decision fatigue is real (and I plan to post on that in the near future).  So if you find yourself with a big ol’ list of self care activities but you remain bogged down by what to do first, allow me to be of assistance.  
One of the main interventions I do with my clients involves something called coping cards.  Once you have a list of at least 50 things you like to do (that are good for you!), you write each one on an index card.  When you find yourself with a block of time for self care, or as you plan your self care for the week, go ahead and shuffle up the deck.  Choose one card  and do whatever it says.  Or plan to do that activity the next time you have time for self care.  
If you don’t love the idea of carrying cards with you, you can easily modify the activity using a simple list (on paper on in your phone) and a random number generator.  Simply number all the activities on your list and let the number generator do the work of choosing your self care for you.  It’s the exact same idea as the cards.  Both of them remove the validity of the excuse “I can’t think of anything good to do.”  Ferris would be so proud.
One final note as to why it’s important to vary your self care practice.  First of all, variety is the spice of life.  If you are constantly doing the same one or two self care activities, you’re going to get bored of them pretty quickly.  Even if you love a bubble bath (and really, who doesn’t?) you could indeed grow weary of them if you had one a day.  Likewise, you may not always have time for a long walk on the beach, even if you know that often decreases your anxiety.  
Mixing it up is also a great way to show yourself that there isn’t one “magic” thing that you always have to do to make you feel relaxed and refreshed.  There’s a great big self care world out there waiting for you to explore it!  As corny as that sounds, it’s true.  And I assure you, as you find different ways to take care of you, you will never grow weary of making time for you.  And trust me, everyone in your life will thank you for it!

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I'm Cathleen, your new (foster) mom friend.

I'm also a psychotherapist in private practice who wants to teach my fellow foster mamas the skills that ACTUALLY work to overcome stress, anxiety and overwhelm...'cause ain't nobody got time for that!

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