Hey! Welcome back to camminarecontiffany!

This is the third part of our self-care series. Check out the intro here, and the second part here.

When Doyin and I spoke about what we wanted to see from this series, we decided to choose different people to interview so we could get their unique perspectives on self-care, one of my choices was Lamide.

I also met Lamide via social media, she was friends with people I interacted with and she was funny and witty so I hit follow and interacted with her more.

Then I discovered that Lamide was an awesome writer, she wrote the kind of stories that put me in a state of shock. So here she was, funny, kind, intelligent, witty, and freaking talented.

Lamide didn’t talk about self-care all the time, but when she did I was always intrigued because she seemed to know what she was doing. She would even make jokes about the bad habits she often indulged in, and I related to her struggles os much.

So from the moment Doyin suggested we interview people, I knew Lamide was gonna be my first choice, check out our interview below

What does self-care look like to you?
Self-care looks like a quiet Sunday brunch alone. When the world is calm and the war within yourself is at a ceasefire, a relative moment of peace before the chaos resumes. Self-care looks like making love to oneself, taking time to learn all your intricacies, falling in love with yourself all over again, especially when the world makes you forget how to. It is taking time out to relax and reboot. Taking time to stop running and catch up with yourself. It looks like quiet times of meditation when you’re disconnected from the world, to protect your sanity.

Self-care looks like a spiritual experience and finding answers from your maker. Self-care looks like the calm before and after the storm, subtle waves of peace washing up the shore. It is indulging in all your guilty pleasures and wearing your selfishness like a crown. It is staring at the mirror and repeating words of self-affirmation about your purpose and worth. Self-care looks like becoming whole again.

lamide.jpg

What/who got you into self-care?
I think self-care comes naturally so I wouldn’t say anyone got me into self-care. It really is in the simple things we find joy in. Times of solitude when it’s just you, snacks and good tv. It’s shutting yourself out from the world, even if it’s to read a good book, getting your nails done or going out for a run or swim to clear your head.

It just really is that quality time you look forward to every day to clear your head and preserve your sanity. So growing up, I had bits of these but I just didn’t think of it as self-care then. But as time goes on and I grow older, I’ve begun to feel heavily conflicted. Like I’m walking a thin line between sanity and insanity; holding onto a loose thread of self-loathing and indifference, so I have to keep running from myself. I’ve found it necessary and essential to indulge myself inconsistent self-care practices that will help pull me back to my centre so I can learn to fall back in love with myself again.

What kind of activities do you do as self-care?
Going out for brunch alone. Going to a bookstore and getting lost in the shelves, leaving with one or two books always got me really excited. At a point, it was going to the movies and I also tried kickboxing once; can I just say it really was the best stress-relief I’ve ever gotten.

Also, towards the end of my final year at uni, I started spending every night at my friend’s place and us 3 would talk for hours, watch tv together and have unapologetic banter. I could be having the worst day and just go to them to unwind freely. It’s the same way I go meet my brother and unwind when I’m back home because solitude can be daunting sometimes. This is why I think self-care can be spending time with your loved ones. The word “self” doesn’t restrict it because it can encapsulate your relationship with others. What matters is how it affects you at the end of the day because some people’s form of self-care and preservation is taking care of others. Spending time with the people you absolutely love and cherish is a unique and underrated form of self-care.

Do you consider whether some of these self-care acts are detrimental to your general well-being?
Not necessarily. Maybe detrimental to my bank account but not my overall well-being. I mean, I have some toxic habits that I wouldn’t necessarily call self-care when I know for sure it is harmful to me in the long run. But that’s what they are, habits which it’s hard to shake off. Self-care is a mode of self-preservation and what I do for that isn’t in itself detrimental to my general well-being, it is what I do outside of that that renders it counterproductive and redundant. If that makes sense.

How has self-care impacted your mental health?
I think it has slowed things down a bit, rather than eradicate all the negativity. I just think self-care is just a temporary experience because your problems still eventually catch up up you. But it has been vital to my sanity and has served as a kind of reboot/refresh mechanism. I’ve found myself lashing out, brooding and panicking at odd times, but after I take some time out to disconnect and unwind, the emotions are not just as intense when I return to it.

Although, I wouldn’t even say I’ve achieved perfect or “acceptable” self-care yet. I still find myself being harsh and unforgiving of myself. The things I say, take in or do with my body… well, it has really stunted that growth and gotten in the way of my self-care sometimes. So while it has served as a buffer for my mental health, the latter tends to overshadow the former real quick.

What would your advice be for people who are trying to find self-care practices?
Stop overthinking it. It’s really in the simple things like what you derive guilty pleasure from, for example. Just embrace it and make it guilt-free.

Try finding it in the quality time you spend by yourself or with others. There’s no handbook of what is acceptable. Trust what calls out to you, it could be in material things like splurging on yourself, or in the physical like exercise or sports, or even in religion. It could be plain old spending time alone at home to unwind. Just think of what makes you feel the most at peace with yourself and the world.

20 year old Olamide is currently the executive editor of lucidlemons.com and is also a writer. She loves to read and take pictures. She recently completed her undergraduate degree in law and is currently at the Nigerian law school. You can check out her work on lucidlemons or her personal blog – uncoatedtruth.wordpress.com

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