Every one of us has a fuel tank that needs three kinds of fuel: spiritual fuel, emotional fuel, and physical fuel.
Spiritually, we need to be feeding on God’s word. We need to talk with Him. We need to do things that help us keep our eyes on Him. Right now I’m reading Romans because our church is studying it. I also try to read Proverbs everyday.
Physically, we need both movement and nutrition fuel. Walk, run, ride a bike, push a stroller—it doesn’t matter what we do…it just matters that we do it! When we eat, it’s important to fuel our body with healthy foods that keep us strong and builds our immune system.
Today, however, I’m thinking about emotional fuel. These are the activities we do that pump us up. They give us energy. They allow us to fill up emotionally so we have patience, comfort, care, focus, and joy to give others.
What fills your emotional fuel tank?
To answer that question requires some self awareness. We need to be in tune with how God made us. Are you an introvert or an extrovert? I used to think these terms referred to how shy or outgoing a person is. That’s not a correct definition, though. An introvert is a person who is refueled by being alone. An extrovert is a person who is refueled by being with people.
I’m an introvert so part of my emotional fuel is finding time to be alone. When my kids were little, I used to ask my husband for 30 minutes to myself (in the bedroom with the door closed reading a book, the newspaper, my Bible, or whatever I could grab that day!) right after he came home from work. It was “daddy wrestle time” while mommy fueled her introvert fuel tank in order to make it through the evening.
Now its easier for me to find alone time, but I still have to carve it out intentionally. No one hands it to me and if I don’t find the time, I start running on fumes which results in impatience, lack of focus, and feeling overwhelmed.
Reading is also emotional fuel for me. I love to read novels, biographies, and the daily newspaper (got to know what’s going on in the world!). When I prioritize reading, there is a happy mommy in the Savage home.
Self care is not selfish. Taking care of yourself IS taking care of your family.
What fills your emotional fuel tank? How do you make time for that? If you’re not making time for refueling activities, what could you do to prioritize them in some way?