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The Real Self Care: The Gift of a Healthier You

By Christa Banister

No doubt, there’s plenty to love about this time of year. But along with all the decorations, holiday cookies, and heightened merriment, there’s often a surplus of added pressure that seems to begin the moment after the Thanksgiving leftovers have been safely stored in the fridge.

From Black Friday on, it’s a veritable sprint to find and wrap the perfect gifts for your family and friends, which can leave anyone feeling a little depleted during what’s supposed to be “the most wonderful time of the year.”

So, what should we do to refuel and refocus? Many suggest a regular regimen of self-care.

Common Misconceptions

Make no mistake, the idea of self-care has become quite buzzworthy. It was the most popular genre of smartphone app a year ago, according to Shape. Earlier this year, Barnes & Noble also released data that documented how more people have been buying books about mental health than diet and exercise, according to the LA Times.

While making mental health a priority is a huge step in a positive direction, there’s still a slew of confusing messages about what self-care is — and isn’t. A quick glance on Instagram, not to mention the often-sponsored recommendations of thousands of popular influencers relegate self-care to something decidedly more trivial.

Truth is, there’s nothing wrong with buying a great-smelling bath bomb for your bubble bath, trying a hip new exercise class, taking a break from social media, kicking back and reading a real page-turner, or indulging in a croissant with your favorite designer coffee, but it’s only going to get you so far.

True self-care, the gift of a healthier you, is a long-term investment in your mental health, the relationships that matter most, and your general well-being with benefits that continue long after you’ve spent that Amazon gift card.

Put Transformation on Your Wish List

No matter your background, what you do for a living, political or religious affiliations, or where you call home, one of the universal qualities of humanity is that everyone struggles with something and has areas where they long for improvement, hence all those New Year’s resolutions.

At Rio Retreat Center, we understand these desires at the heart of humanity, which is why we’ve been offering workshops for more than three decades that literally anyone can benefit from. Whether someone is seeking personal or professional growth, hoping to supplement their existing recovery, struggling with interpersonal relationships, or facing a stumbling block that’s preventing lasting transformation, there is a myriad of empowering options that promote health and healing for the long haul.

In a safe, supportive environment with specialized facilitators who are passionate about their areas of expertise, there’s so much that can be accomplished in these intensive five-day workshops that have tangible life-changing benefits.

Helpful Resources at the Ready

If your schedule or budget doesn’t allow for travel at the moment or you’re looking for supplemental materials after attending a workshop to help you stay on track, there are a number of helpful and inspiring resources available in our online bookstore. Carefully curated by the Senior Fellows at Rio Retreat Center and other trusted experts, with a focus on living your healthiest life possible, these books, DVDs, and CDs make for great gifts that keep on giving — for yourself and the people you care about most.

To find out more about the life-changing workshops that Rio Retreat Center offers, lodging, and accommodations, visit our Workshops page.