Part of caregiving to yourself is “exercise” (for want of a better word), but it may have a fair amount of negative connotations for you. Perhaps you never found anything that worked, a program you could follow on a regular and ongoing basis, one that would keep you fit. If strong motivation is lacking, it may require professional help to assist you in giving up the destructive habit of a sedentary lifestyle. This is not always an easy task to take on by yourself, and making excuses is what you do instead.
“I exercise plenty just living life, like cleaning the house, shopping for groceries, running around town in my car. That’s how I exercise.”
I might ask, “But, do your activities include concentrated stretching, strengthening and doing aerobics on a regular basis, three to five times a week? If not, you have a recipe for aging more quickly and seeing a decline in functionality.”
Another excuse that can be offered is:
“I have no time, not even two hours a week to spare. And besides, I can’t afford it. I don’t have money to join a club, or start a yoga class.”
I then might ask, “But, can you afford ill health that comes from a weak immune system or joints that are wearing out from inactivity?”
Again, it is a question of priorities. No matter what our financial position or our how busy we are, we all make decisions on how to spend our time and our money, beyond the absolute necessities. We may choose to spend our money on nonessentials, like a Starbucks coffee or the purchase of one more thing we could live without, but which gives us momentary, fleeting pleasure. Others have a large “weekly entertainment budget,” so they can meet their friends at a restaurant. Still others pay to add even more television channels, for their amusement. It is a choice we make.