• Tara Palmer

Whole Person Self-Care

Updated: May 17

There is just not enough time in the day!

Many of us find ourselves feeling quite challenged by trying to figure out how to balance attending to the different things that are important to us.

In the post ‘Is Self-Care a Swear Word?’ we considered how often we do not prioritize ourselves. If you have gotten this far, I imagine you are quite interested in finding pathways for optimizing self-care, and overall well-being. You are ready to move beyond the basics (good sleep patterns, healthy eating, and regular exercise) and get ‘fancy.’

Getting fancy with self-care requires us to reflect on ourselves and our lives through the lens of knowing ourselves as whole people.

We often get swept up in doing things we feel we ‘have to’ do without stepping back and reflecting mindfully on why we are doing it. Are our choices reflecting our values and priorities? How are our different efforts serving us?

We each have only so much time to spend in a day. If we think of time like we think of money, we can easily recognize that if we spend it all in one place, we won’t have it to spend somewhere else.


The Personal Balance Map will give you an opportunity to reflect on how you are currently spending your time and energy, and what shifts might help you get into better alignment with caring for yourself as a whole person.


Personal Balance Map

Personal Balance Map

You may want to begin by creating your own drawing of the above map. You may use the existing categories, or change them to better match how you would divide the whole of your own life into its important parts.

*You will want to create 2 copies.


On one, you will record your thoughts about how you currently experience each aspect of life. On the other, you will make notes that align with your vision of the balance you hope to create.

Feel free to use the questions below for reflection, or to be creative in your use of the Personal Balance Map.

1. Begin by considering how satisfied you are in each area of the ‘map.’

Mark your level of satisfaction 0-10.

*When completing the copy related to your ‘vision,’ you will want to consider that we do not

all need to strive for a '10' in each area in order to be satisfied. Each of us will define our

balance by paying attention to what is most important to us. What are our top priorities?

What do we value most?

Good enough is good enough in some areas… where optimizing feels important in other areas.


2. Jot down some activities you engage in to build or maintain your current balance in each area. If you are artsy, feel free to draw pictures.

*On your ‘vision’ copy, jot down some activities you imagine will support the changes you hope to make.


3. Write some words that describe how you feel about each area.

(Happy, excited, inspired, confused, frustrated, alone, etc.)


4. Reflect on your current balance.

*Are there parts with which you are already satisfied?

*What parts require small changes?

*Which parts require strong intention, focus, planning, discipline, or support to create the desired changes?

5. As you reflect on each part you hope to change, consider potential barriers that have been or could interfere with desired changes?

*Name the barriers (fear, money, time, motivation, etc.).

*Can you think of resources that would help you overcome these barriers?

© Tara Palmer

TaraLPalmer at yahoo.com