How often do you start your day feeling tired, stressed and dreading having to turn up because you don’t feel ready to face the day? Do you find that you are feeling burnt out and maxed out even before you walk out the door in the mornings? Could it be that you are someone who is always looking after everyone else’s needs and you have been neglecting your own? If this is the case, as I’m sure it is for many of us especially those of us who are educators, the problem is that you can’t take care of anyone else’s needs, if you are not taking care of your own. Now is the time for you to release your bottomless level of potential, live life on your own terms & add a level of value to the world that no one else can. In this episode, we share three simple steps on how you can step up self-care, which simply means taking better care of yourself. So many of us are constantly neglecting this area of our lives. We feel guilty about putting ourselves and our needs above others, even though we must do this as a way to protect, preserve and respect ourselves. It is time to win back your life, upgrade your happiness, and feeling of aliveness and become more present, productive and energised.

In this episode

03:22 — What Is Self-Care?

04:53 — Why Self-Care Is So Important?

08:05 — Physical Self-Care

09:08 — Having Proper Nutrition, Proper Sleep, and Great Physical Activity Is Essential When It Comes to Self-Care

10:58 — Mental Self-Care

12:13 — Becoming Your Number One Cheerleader

13:10 — Pay Attention to How You Talk to Yourself

14:32 — Emotional Self-Care

16:04 — Journaling as an Effective Form of Emotional Self-Care

18:53 — Conclusion


Dr Marisa Lee Naismith is excited to announce the release of her new book “Singing Contemporary Commercial Music Styles: A Pedagogical Framework” published by Compton Publications UK. Marisa offers this book as a starting point and as CCM markets continue to evolve, she encourages that we, as a voice community, continue to evolve, debate and communally add to this framework.



Visit the A Voice and Beyond Youtube channel to watch back the video replay of this guest interview or to see my welcome video.

Episode Transcription

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  00:02

It’s Marissa Lee here. And I’m so excited to be sharing today solo round episode with you. Whether you’re a member of the voice community, or beyond your voice is your unique gift. And my mission, which has been inspired by my own personal and professional journey is to empower you to share your gift with others. Now is the time for you to discover your voice in life, develop a positive mindset, and become the best and most authentic version of yourself to create greater impact. Ultimately, you can take charge, and you can become the director of your own life. It’s time for you to live your best live. It’s time now, for A Voice and Beyond. So, without further ado, let’s go to today’s episode. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  01:10

How often do you start to your day feeling tired, stressed and dreading having to turn up because you don’t feel ready to face the day? Do you find that you’re feeling burnt out and maxed out? Even before you walk out the door in the mornings? Are you lacking the mental focus and the physical energy you need to be at your best? Have you ever stopped to ask yourself why this is so? 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  01:46

Could it be that you are someone who is always looking after everyone else’s needs and you’ve been neglecting your own? If this is the case, as I’m sure it’s been many of us, especially those of us who are educators. The problem is that you cannot take care of everyone else if you’re not taking care of yourself first. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  02:14

Now is the time for you to release your bottomless level of potential. You are unique, you have the ability to live life on your own terms and add value to the world that no one else can. No one else can live life in your shoes. No one else has the exact same aspirations, dreams potential and capabilities as you do. Plus, you deserve to live your best life we all do. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  02:50

In this episode, I’m going to share with you some ideas on how you can win back your life. Upgrade your happiness, feeling of aliveness and be more present productive and energized. I aim to help you to become the best version of yourself.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  03:21

So here’s a question. How many of you take time out every day for self care or just take time to do something that brings you joy? What does self care mean for you? Is it something that is simply not existent in your life, or a word that doesn’t exist in your vocabulary? 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  03:45

Simply put, self care means taking care of yourself. It’s really that simple. And yet so many of us are constantly neglecting this area of our lives. We feel guilty about putting ourselves and our needs above others, even though we must do this as a way to protect, preserve and respect ourselves. We feel as though we have to apologize for taking care of us. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  04:16

If this sounds like you, and you’re not sure where to start? Well, you can start by setting boundaries, being aware of your thoughts and being in tune with your feelings and your actions so you can be at your best especially when you need to show up for others. The me as a voice teacher, this means that I can teach role model and mentor with all good intentions. It’s about bringing a good energy to my work my life and to others and being really intentional about it. It is so important to me. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  04:56

Self care means taking care of myself first, and I didn’t realize how much my self-care regime had become such an important part of my day until I went away to Europe for a month. Not so long ago, I found that I had to be extremely diligent and not to neglect myself care even at the inconvenience of my husband, who was traveling with me. But even he gets it because he is the beneficiary of my self care. I didn’t want to come home suffering from a holiday remorse, and it’s a real thing. It’s not as though I’ve become high maintenance, it’s probably that I’ve become a little precious when it comes to self care. It is a major priority for me. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  04:56

What about you? What does self care mean to you? If you think of self care as something that is selfish or indulgent, it’s time for you to change your mindset around self care. Think of it as something that is a proactive strategy, rather than a reactive coping mechanism that is practiced regularly to reduce the incidence or severity of things like burnout and fatigue. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  04:56

Self-care refers to activities that preserve and maintain your physical and emotional and mental health. It is an ongoing commitment to looking after yourself. So let’s break this down a little further.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  05:48

In my day to day self care means scheduling time for those things that leave me feeling peaceful, confident, or healthy. It means taking care of all those areas of my life that empower me to show up each day at my best.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  06:06

Sometimes self-care can mean something different depending on what I have on my plate. So if I’ve been super rushed throughout the week, self care might look like a skincare routine, which could be something like doing a face mask. You see, self care needs to be very fluid as our needs can change from day to day, especially when we’re feeling really overwhelmed with work. It’s okay to be selfish about it. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  06:40

In these most difficult and unpredictable times, we all need to learn how to center ourselves amidst the anxiety and the stress of the unknown, as well as the struggle and the challenge of having a bad day or a bad week or a bad month. We must learn how to go from angst ease, from chaos to clarity. And there are times that self care can simply mean saying no, and I’ve become much better at dropping all those things that I don’t need to do immediately or for other people off my daily to do list. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  08:05

Let’s start with one of the most obvious and that is physical self care, which simply put means that you are taking care of your body. Let me ask you, and please be honest here. Are you someone who takes better care of their car, then their own body? Would you fuel your car with the wrong fuel? Do you wait till the car breaks down before you change the oil? Or get those repairs done? Do you get your car serviced regularly? Of course you do. So why aren’t you taking care of your body in the same way? What is it going to take before you start to take care of yourself? 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  09:08

Incorporating some physical activity or let’s use the word movement into your routine is critical for physical self care. And according to the research, regular exercise is directly linked to improving mental health to you don’t need to lift heavy weights in the gym or run a marathon to reap the benefits of exercise. Even things like walking in nature is linked to improving our frame of mind as well as our fitness levels. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  09:42

Fueling your body with nourishing food is also important and that means eating foods that help you flourish and not just satisfy your hunger. If you’re eating rubbish foods on a regular basis, you are simply leach trashing your body, there’s no other nice way to say it. The other problem is that when we are not getting some of those most basic essential nutrients, it can lead to feeling mentally and physically drained, which is why experts say, nourishing the body with healthy foods is so important. And be sure to engage all the senses as you enjoy your meal. Take in its colors, smell, texture, and taste, make eating an important part of your day, make it a celebration. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  10:37

So physical activity, proper nutrition and sleep are essential when it comes to self-care. And please, don’t forget to hydrate.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  10:58

Mental self care starts with paying attention to how you’re talking to yourself. And we’ve talked a lot about this in other episodes. It’s about the stories we’re telling ourselves. And that self talk can be toxic things such as, I’m not good enough. I’m not worthy. Nothing good happens in my life. None of this talk is going to serve you. mental self care means that you replace that terrible inner dialogue with more positive self talk, something more encouraging something, kinda think about it. How can you be kind to others when you’re being so unkind to yourself, if you’re always arguing with others may be start thinking about the way you speak to yourself. Your inner dialogue must be kind, and we must learn to treat ourselves better in life. And for the sake of your future happiness, it’s time for you to speak to yourself as your best friend, and not as your worst enemy. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  12:13

Saying things such as I’m great. I’m smart, I am a high achiever, I am winning at life. This is not about narcissism. It’s about understanding that your thought patterns, especially those you say to yourself on a consistent basis can truly shape whether or not you feel fulfilled, joyous, successful, or just a decent human being. You have to get closer to the ideal of the best of who you are, and who you want to become. And guess how you get there. It’s by talking to yourself in a positive manner. Cheer yourself on, become your number one cheerleader. Sometimes you could be the only one you have. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  13:10

There may be times that you kind of have to boss yourself around a little to keep yourself from falling apart. And you know, that’s okay. And I know that it may sound a little flippant, but positive self talk helps you to stay in alignment with the best of who you are. And the more you are congruent, the more you are fulfilled in life. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  13:37

Once again, if you don’t know where to start, I know there are so many great thought leaders out there speaking about having some kind of morning mantra, or some morning affirmations you can repeat. And I know Yep, that can sound like a little woowoo. But if this helps, who cares? Do whatever works for you. This is self help at its best, because you’re actually reprogramming your brain. You’re building in the software code that can help you become the best version of you. So let’s start by improving what we’re saying to ourselves.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  14:32

Emotional self-care is about understanding your emotions. So any people who go through life being reactive and on the defensive, this is you. Not understanding where those behaviors are coming from is problematic and this is no way to live. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  14:55

What I’ve discovered along my journey of life is that like the ocean Do we have ebb and flow to in our lives, we can only have joy when we experience sorrow. It’s okay to acknowledge those moments of sadness, allow them to pass, be thankful for them and move on. It’s when we fight those difficult moments in time and try hard to push through them, that we become ill. And some people may call this being diseased. When we suppress our feelings, they don’t go away. I hate to tell you, they don’t leave us. They simmer until they boil over. It’s when our bodies and our minds are on a collision course. And there is disharmony, we can begin to spiral downward Lee with our health, we have to acknowledge our feelings and reactions as these moments in our lives are simply opportunities to learn and for growth. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  16:04

My perceptions were misconstrued and I had to learn to reconnect with my true self, give myself permission to breathe, be still present, satisfied, feel accomplished, grateful, enjoy the process and take a moment to create a beautiful memory. That moment of self discovery was the beginning of my healing journey in life. And journaling was an effective form of emotional self care for me, because it helped me to process and understand my emotions. And there are so many different types of journals with the specific purposes in mind, such as a gratitude journal, a self love journal, or an intention setting journal. I know this can all sound like too much. And some of you may think I don’t have the time for all this stuff. But it doesn’t have to be time consuming. Even taking five minutes out of your day to reflect can be so rewarding. And to be honest, that’s as long as I spend journaling every morning, I wouldn’t be able to stick to it if the time commitment was any more than that for me. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  17:25

The other thing that has really helped me tremendously to manage and to regulate my emotions is meditation. And the benefits of meditation have long been established. Research shows that taking time to relax and to recenter, or simply to press pause on life can lead to better physical health, as well as managing those feelings of anxiety and depression. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  17:55

People, the other thing I urge you is to don’t hesitate to seek help if you need it. If you’re struggling, or in constant overwhelm, we can all find the support we need from partners, parents, friends, and others close to us. We all need connection to others. And this type of emotional self care can’t be overlooked. It simply means spending time with those you love those who make you laugh out loud. And I love those people and those who are our biggest cheerleaders. That’s why it’s so important to find time to regularly meet up with people in your life who bring you joy.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  18:53

So I guess the message I want to share in this episode is that we can’t share with others a resource that we lack ourselves. You can’t take care of others. If you’re not taking care of yourself. You can’t be kind to others if you’re not being kind to yourself. Self-care is critical. And the starting point is checking in with your own physical, mental and emotional health temperature. Ask yourself, how am I doing? How am I feeling? Am I taking time out to take care of me? time and energy are unlimited supply for all of us. So how are you spending yours?

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  19:40

If you’ve been neglecting your self-care, it can be as simple as creating a regular normal routine of basic self care. One of the best ways to manage through chaos is to anchor yourself down in routine schedule regular exercise which has been well documented in terms of its mental health benefits. Try taking up a regular meditation if you haven’t already, there is truly no time like the present to do this. Scheduling when you read or watch the news can also help you keep your consumption of chaos measured. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  20:22

Think of ways to be mentally engaged either through work or activities, such as crosswords or jigsaw puzzles, games, reading, or writing. Start a journal or a blog. self reflection will allow you to make meaning of what is happening within you and around you. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  20:44

Now is the time to foster positive self talk. And this is so critical. Look for the positives in your life and shout them out aloud. Now is the time to have the courage to be enthusiastic, express appreciation. Call out your triumphs no matter how big or small. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  21:09

As I said, self-care refers to activities that preserve and maintain your physical, emotional and mental health and well being. It’s an ongoing commitment you make with yourself to look after yourself, and it will make it easier for you to ride the storm of any future ups and downs. Learn to take good care of you now, because nobody else is going to do it for you. You are worth the effort. Always have been and always will be. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  21:51

Thank you so much for listening to this episode of A Voice and Beyond. I hope you enjoyed it as now is an important time for you to invest in your own self care, personal growth and education. Use every day as an opportunity to learn and to grow, so you can show up feeling empowered and ready to live your best life. If you know someone who will also be inspired by this episode, please be sure to copy and paste the link and share it with them. Or share it on social media and use the hashtag #AVoiceAndBeyond. I promise you I am committed to bringing you more inspiration and conversations just like this one every week. And if you’d like to help me, please rate and review this podcast and cheer me on by clicking the subscribe button on Apple Podcast right now. I would also love to know what it is that you most enjoyed about this episode and what was your biggest takeaway. Please take care and I look forward to your company next time on the next episode of A Voice and Beyond.

Are you ready to discover your voice in life, develop a positive mindset and become the best and most authentic version of yourself?

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