Caroline Pearson, Founder of Progressive Vet Consulting tells us what self-care means to her and shares inspirational quotes from some surprising characters.
What does self-care mean to you?
For me, self-care means knowing yourself well enough to understand how you are likely to respond to your context and others around you and so prepare to act and react in a manner which is in line with how you wish to behave. I believe this greatly reduces both my anxiety and post-event self-critic, helping me to plan my workload and be kinder to those around me. This is an ongoing process, and not without many a stumble, but the value of reflecting on what worked and didn’t work also helps to gain a feeling of progression along a path worth taking.
How do you practice self-care?
Ha- easier said than done! I read and reflect on what I’ve read: how does it apply to me? I write to do lists and prioritise them and then prepare for the to dos, thinking of possible scenarios. I schedule working hours and time for exercise/other social activities. I find coaching young swimmers at the competitive swim club enables me to laugh and switch off from work. The satisfaction of giving some time to others is a real treat. I talk to friends or my family and value their support/advice.
What are your tell-tale signs that you need to take care of yourself?
Generally, I sleep less well, pick up colds and look generally whacked. Then it can become a vicious circle with one ailment after another. Sadly, I start to snap at my ever-tolerant husband and become more impatient with my boys. I listen less and start to do, do, do.
What do you do when you need a pick me up?
I do love to go to the gym and work it out on the treadmill or have a quick browse around the shops. However, my best tonic is a coffee and chat with good friends or my mum and a great dinner, in or out, with my husband.
What are your wellbeing words of wisdom?
I do believe personal wellbeing is crucial if you are to enjoy work and life. However, it shouldn’t be at the expense of others, but embrace the joy of helping and contributing to something you believe in. Purpose is so important, without it how can you know what you wish to achieve?
What’s your favourite inspirational quote?
So many, but here are two:
“It’s our choices that show us what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” - Albus Dumbledore
“If you are lucky enough to find love, remember it is there and don’t throw it away.” - Stephen Hawkings
Caroline was born in N.Ireland, and studied at Cambridge before working as a small animal vet in Oxfordshire and South-West England. She then stepped out of the veterinary profession, into recruitment management, before completing an MSc and founding Progressive Vet Consulting. Caroline has a vet husband and two boys. To find out more about Progressive Vet Consulting visit www.progressivevetconsulting.com