Satisfaction within ones self is very important, you should not only feel happy physically (the way you look, etc) but also mentally. I look after myself in various ways, but there is one important factor in my well being and that is simply Islam. My religion is who I ultimately am and if I feel that I am not fulfilling my duty as a Muslim then my mental state will not be positive. I look after myself by submitting to Allah fully and letting my feelings be expressed through actions in praying, fasting or doing charitable acts. I do my best knowing that if I genuinely tried, then I can leave everything to Allah. My sense of contentment comes in trying to please Him and following the Sunnah of the Prophet pbuh. Of course, I’d lie if I said this was difficult but as I get closer to Islam, not only do I find this easier but I feel a sense of happiness and belonging within this tough world. It’s because I know my soul is content with what I believe is the truth.
Other ways I look after myself include never trying to combine my social life with my work life. Everyone has tough aspects associated to their jobs, but to bring that into your social life is, in my opinion, toxic. When my work is finished every day, I zone out and focus on my social life by giving time to my family or friends or engaging in social activities. Even when I talk to my dear ones, I avoid talking about work unless I feel stressed or in a position to give or gain advice. Having this balance is not easy for everyone but I can promise you, once you take that work email off your phone or tell your colleague do not message/call me directly out of office hours, you will get back a part of your life which you only thought existed when you took a holiday.
Another way I look after myself is through the physical side of things. In what I eat or what I do to stay fit. Having a reasonably good diet, without starving oneself, is so important. Eating healthy foods like fruits and drinking water regularly can have such positive psychological impacts as you feel a sense of contentment. Personally I find it difficult to control my sugary foods but I always try not to over eat or starve myself. If you have a craving then you should feed that craving, just don’t make it a habit. Additionally, my self contentment is certainly enhanced by my physical activities. I just cannot come home from work 5 days a week and stay in bed on my phone. I have to be doing something to keep me active – whether it is playing football, badminton or going to the gym – that level of fitness allows me to look after myself.
Overall, looking after oneself can vary but ultimately it is self contentment both physically and mentally. Being able to know when to stop when you are burnt out is important and obviously having the right people around you is key. Alhamdulilah I am blessed to have some amazing people in my life, but I know deep inside that ultimately self contentment comes from myself and my relationship with my Lord. If I can please Him then I can look after myself and be happy. Everything else will then fall into place inshaAllah.