Thought Leadership

Self-Care Is Not Selfish: Refocusing Your Relationship with Taking Care of YOU

March 12, 2024 | Brown & Brown Insurance | Thought Leadership

Self-Care Is Not Selfish: Refocusing Your Relationship with Taking Care of YOU
by Julie Turpin, Chief People Officer at Brown & Brown Insurance

As many as 97% of Americans think it is important to take time for self-care, but 1 in 4 feel guilty when they actually do. And, yes, women are more likely to feel this guilt than men.

As women, we often find ourselves shouldering numerous responsibilities. According to Pew Research, even when spouses earn about the same, women still spend more on caregiving and housework than their husbands.

And yet, we all know that showing up for yourself helps you show up for others.

No one can pour from an empty cup. When we prioritize self-care, we replenish our reserves, enabling us to share our gifts and uplift those around us. It alleviates the guilt when we stop thinking of self-care as stepping away from our responsibilities and instead fulfilling one of them.

There are a plethora of self-care routines, tips and tricks online, but true self-care goes beyond mere actions. It requires a mindset shift. Here are three ways to refocus your relationship with self-care. And there’s no better time than now — Women’s History Month.

1. Make a declaration of self-worth.

We can easily become defined by our roles as parents, teammates or partners, but we can lose ourselves if we don’t take time to reconnect with the essence of who we are beyond these labels. Our worth is more than what we provide to others. The first step toward prioritizing self-care is acknowledging your self-worth. When you consciously or unconsciously decide that you are always a second priority, the world will respond in turn. However, amazing things happen when you declare, through voice and action, that you matter.

Your actions reflect the investment you make in yourself. Every action you take today shapes the reality of tomorrow. By investing in self-care, you’re laying the foundation for a more energized and fulfilling tomorrow, which you deserve.

As a business leader, I’ve also found that by prioritizing self-care, I set a precedent for my team members to do the same. Through example, I work to create a culture within which we recognize and value the connection between well-being and success and more openly appreciate each other’s needs.

2. Take control of your dimmer switch.

We have the power to adjust our energy levels based on our needs. While some days may call for full wattage, where we show up at our best, others only call for a gentler glow. Understanding when to shine and when to temper is a powerful tool for resilience.

Leaders often feel like they need to emit complete confidence and enthusiasm at all times, but even great leaders face moments of fatigue and uncertainty, too. During these times, it’s essential to acknowledge our limitations and honor our need for rest, reflection and self-compassion.

Adjusting our energy levels enables us to show up authentically in every situation. Whether we’re called to exude strength or to embody vulnerability — both equal characteristics of leadership — we can meet each moment with presence and integrity. This allows us to cultivate deeper connections with ourselves and others.

3. Find what works for you.

Self-care is not a one-size-fits-all concept. What rejuvenates one person may not necessarily have the same effect on another. It doesn’t have to be a grand gesture; even small actions can significantly impact your vitality and joy. The key lies in finding what works for you.

Here are a couple of actions that work for me:

  • Embracing moments of solitude: There’s something profoundly beautiful about quiet moments, especially during the early hours of the day. I use my mornings as a time of reflection and introspection, and I set intentions for the day ahead. I’ve been inspired by Robin Sharma’s book, The 5 AM Club: Own Your Morning. Elevate Your Life. I recommend it for anyone looking to transform their mornings.
  • Practicing gratitude: There’s a proven correlation between joy and gratitude and truly loving yourself. I’ve written before about how to practice gratitude daily.

When we think of self-care as a luxury, we attach guilt to it. We make it a second priority and, therefore, make ourselves a second priority. But self-care is necessary for our overall well-being and the well-being of those around us, not for special occasions or moments of true burnout. The key is to identify what brings you joy and commit to incorporating it into your daily routine. It could be journaling, cooking, running, meditation or reading. The activity will be personal, but the energy it gives you will be contagious. ✨


PurposeFULL Leadership
How Personal & Professional Growth Can Help You Lead A Fullfilled Life
by Julie Turpin, Chief People Officer at Brown & Brown Insurance

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