With contributor Elsa Duré!
In recent years, you’ve no doubt heard the term “self-care” hundreds of times. You may know that the term originated in black feminist circles and soon became widely used in public health, disability, therapy and social work communities. You’ve probably heard the critique that self-care is consumerism thinly cloaked as “wellness.” You’ve probably also heard progressives say that self-care individualizes systemic problems--which may be why politically engaged folks have been reticent to create printed matter about a new crop of anti-consumerist, community-oriented, body positive approaches to self-care. These "authentic" approaches to self-care appeal in particular (but not exclusively) to folks with class privilege who have achieved success on the outside—but still feel anxious, unfulfilled, and worried about the world around them.
Now "authentic" self-care has a book, Gracy Obuchowicz’s selfcarefully, a different kind of self-help book, a book-as-object designed and illustrated by Maria Habib.
Gracy Obuchowicz is a Washington, D.C.-based self-care coach who has taken over 200 women through her course, Self-Care 101, which interprets Ayurvedic wisdom for Western living. More than just achieving better personal habits, this intensive self-care work helped many of these women find deeper meaning in their work and lives—and take on more leadership in order to care for others and advocate for systemic change.
selfcarefully is where Gracy puts together her teachings in one place, sharing her unique definition of self-care and her vision of a more careful and caring world. The book contains 30 vignettes, including: self-care and setting boundaries, self-care and soaking grains, self-care and the moon, self-care and racism, self-care and consumerism, self-care and perfectionism, self-care and community, and more. It also contains excerpts of interviews with justice-seekers about leadership and self-care in action.
Elsa Duré is an education leader with a passion for driving system-level change to ensure all children have the opportunity to pursue their dreams. She is deeply committed to identifying and dismantling the barriers that keep our schools from creating more equitable and inclusive learning environments.