Sometimes people attempt to meet the needs of family members, employers, children, friends, or society in general before meeting their own needs, and working to please and care for others often interferes with one’s self-care routine and can take a toll on a person’s well-being. People who have dependent personalities or experience depression, codependency, or anxiety may also fail to meet their self-care needs. However, self-care is often considered to be an important aspect of resiliency: those who are able to adequately meet their needs are often able to better cope with everyday stressors.
Because people who are able to meet their own physical and emotional needs are typically better equipped to care for others, it may be especially important for parents of children with behavioral challenges or other special needs to maintain a self-care routine. Fatigue, stress, anxiety, and worry may have a significant effect on well-being, but attending to physical and emotional needs may help prevent or reduce the effects of these issues, foster self-compassion, and leave parents more able to meet the needs of their child.
Self-care behaviors may also help mental health professionals and other health care providers avoid compassion fatigue, which can often result from work in a high-stress or traumatic environment and may lead to self-doubt, self-blame, and ethical or legal complications.