“No one ever hated his own body. Instead, he feeds and takes care of it, as Christ takes care of the church.” – Ephesians 5:29 (GWT) 

If you have ever been on an airplane, you know that the flight attendant will always tell you to put your oxygen mask on if the cabin loses pressure. They will also tell you to put yours on first before helping others.

It’s a message most of us frequent fliers have learned to tune out, but it’s critically important nonetheless. This is a basic principle each of us can apply to our lives. If we want to be effective in helping others, we must learn to take better care of ourselves. We cannot help others when we are depleted and defeated.

Too often, we do everything for others and very little for ourselves. By not taking care of ourselves, we cannot take care of others. Making sure you are well and thriving so that you can better respond to and nurture those in your care should always be a top priority.

So whether it’s your mental, physical, or relational health, be sure to put your oxygen mask on, first.