Reading Time: 4 minutes

Self-Care is a term thrown around all the time but does anyone really know the entirety of the concept? Is it really just taking bubble baths and a good sleep in? I honestly had no idea. So, instead of googling it like I usually do, I wanted to learn from experts. I bought a ticket to the Secret Sisterhood’s Sister Self-Care Session presented by UTS. I was investing in myself, you know what they say “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”. 

As I sat in the zoom waiting room on a lovely Thursday evening, I was so excited to listen to some boss ladies and open myself to learning about self-care. The night began with a lovely intro from the girls at UTS and a little info about the night. I was a bit nervous as we started because I’d never been to an event like this before. Not only was it online but also a very supportive environment. A (virtual) room of women supporting women. 

Jacquie Love

After the short introduction from the UTS girls, the first speaker of the night was Jacquie Love, the founder of the Secret Sisterhood. She explained her story and the beginnings of the Secret Sisterhood. The key point I took from Jacquie was ‘Do what you love and make that count’. I was inspired by the way she used her passion for fashion design and helping people for the basis of the Secret Sisterhood. In terms of self-care, I’ve learned to not do something because of the future implications of it, not to make the most money or self-perfection but what makes me happy at the moment and will impact others for the better. Doing what you love is self-care. 

Amy Kate

Next was a chat with the wonderful psychologist, Amy Kate from ‘The Mindful Collective’. She broke down what self-care is. First, she began by asking us to write down 3 things that we do for our own self-care. I’ll be honest with you, I struggled a bit. I don’t actually know if I ever slow down, other than when I go to bed at night. So, I only wrote 2 things down, playing my ukulele and sleeping at a normal sleep pattern (usually). Obviously, Amy knew we all were a bit hesitant at writing down self-care we did. So, she broke down the 7 pillars of Self-Care that were outlined by the international self-care foundation. As she began to break down these 7 pillars, I realised I do a lot more for myself but I have so much more I could improve on.  

Betty Andrews

The next chat was with Betty Andrews, founder of ‘Hstl & Hrt’. As a purpose and success coach, she explained how self-care is just as important as your business plan. This made me put into perspective how lost and ‘one-track-minded’ we can get when pursuing dreams and careers. When we focus on business, we can become oblivious to what we need rather than what our business or career needs. So, as a Uni Student, that interns and works a part-time job, it’s made me get up from my desk and take a break once in a while.

Amanda Giblin

Our next chat was with Amanda Giblin, the director of ‘AP8 Fierce Females’. She explained the importance of self-defence when it comes to self-care. The key point I took from Amanda was ‘Manage the Distance = Manage the Damage”. I’ve always thought when in a tough situation, it is important to stand up for myself and physically staunch myself. But, Amanda put into perspective that taking care of yourself is not necessarily having to fight fists up. To manage the distance between you and danger before throwing punches. She also taught us the different types of distances between us and danger and the response we should have to each. It was important as sometimes I find myself going headfirst into arguments that could lead to dangerous situations. 

Carly Taylor 

After a short intermission, we spoke with vegan activist and health enthusiast, Carly Taylor. She explained the importance to nourish your body and how to live a happier life. She pinpointed the ways to improve your wellbeing, especially first thing in the morning. A really great takeaway I gained from her was to take 5 to 10 minutes in the morning to get up, take a deep breath and think positive thoughts. Simple? I know. But, it made me think about the first thing I do in the morning. I grab my phone and check all the notifications I missed. Sometimes, if I don’t like what I see, it’ll have a negative impact on my day. So, since listening to Carly, I’ve learned the habit of sitting with my positive thoughts and starting my day on a good note. 

Jo Bartley

The last talk of the night was with Jo Bartley, founder of iCurvy. She was amazing and spoke about the importance of body confidence and size inclusivity. I loved the point she made that body confidence doesn’t happen overnight. It is a journey. I thought about it and realised she was right. It takes time to fall in love with your body, especially when we’re thrown into the deep end with society and social media’s perception of what beauty is supposed to be. It is important to remember the diversity that women are. It is not one size fits all but rather all sizes included in beauty. 

At the end of the night, there was a raffle for every attendee with prizes from each sponsor of the night. All proceeds of the night went towards ‘The Hunger Project’ for International Day of the Girl Child. In the end, I was glad I stepped out of my comfort zone and attended the Sister’s Self-Care Session. It was worth it, I did invest in myself and confirmed self-care is more than just taking bubble baths and a good sleep in.

By Kaylen Cenidoza