It’s time to add yourself to the equation. Sometimes math is tricky, but in this case we have an answer we can’t go wrong with. So what is the question? Why is it so easy to diminish and deny our self care. Answer: Many times we receive messages, some as adults, but unfortunately also those ingrained since childhood that we are powerless to make change, especially in our own lives. Sometimes we absorb feedback from others that shapes the way we see ourselves, treat ourselves. Self neglect can even be a carryover from being neglected in earlier life and not learning the tools essential to individually advocate. Often, the ways we function is based on what we’ve lived, the examples we’ve had, what we know.
These elements are so powerful when we consider who we are and why we make the decisions we do. They may even impact our experience as caregivers. While loving and giving to others, we may believe that care only flows in one direction, there may be fears of appearing selfish, even attempts to prove our value. Sadly, prolonged fear has been given too much room in our lives, fostered the lie that your value is dependent on someone else’s opinion, or is evidenced by an exhausted body and a crippled spirit, without opportunities to repair and replenish. You are meant for more. You are meant to experience a life, which though affected by challenges, discomfort, loss, and difficulty, can also be balanced by recognition of self and renewal, where you create your own story as you help others live theirs. You have the chance and the responsibility to rewrite your narrative, decide what you want your life to be. While life is many things, hard and sweet, painful and good, long and short, it’s the privilege we have right now. It is a gift we get to live, one we get to share.
Still it is hard to give back to ourselves when we don’t know where to start, or feel we have few resources to draw from. Having resources or tools that we apply proactively and in various situations can allow us to be more responsive and resilient. Conversely, exhaustion and emptiness can create an experience it feels impossible to move past. What are the circumstances that have shaped you? And of even greater consequence, what can you do to create the life you want now? The past cannot be changed, but we have the present.
We get to establish the parameters we want for now, for our future. I understand that when we hear the word “parameters”, we hear boundaries, we often see stop signs. While it may sound uncomfortable to place restrictions on ourselves, think about what happens when we arrive at a stop sign. In the best circumstances, where the rule is followed, we have to slow down before coming to a halt. This creates a place of safety, allowing us to make an informed decision before our next encounter. On an emotional level, when we slow down and allow ourselves to become mindful or build awareness of what is happening in our present experience, we start to function differently and well. Paying attention to our thoughts, feelings, and physical reactions as adults provides us with information and allows us to create new standards. It gives us personal power about what we want and don’t want, what we allow and won’t allow in our lives. It also allows us to define our own non-negotiables, creates opportunities for us to grow, to view life with expectancy, to have joy, and to heal. This is all a part of self care. Without a plan for our needs, we act reactively, with impulse, and often to our own disadvantage. We may hold the passive view that things will work out, someone else will make our situation better. However, the truth is, things won’t feel better, they won't change until you take action. Yes, it will feel uncomfortable at first, but making room for change will allow You to create your plan, it will allow You to teach others how to treat you, and it will allow You to replace unhealthy patterns. Caring for others without also ensuring meaningful care for ourselves leaves us at zero, zero emotional resources, zero outlets, zero adequate supports, and zero self love.
It is vital that we identify our needs, the things that allow us to feel physically healthy and emotionally good. Think about times in your life when you’ve fully engaged your mind, your body, and your heart- where you felt happiness, peace? What were you doing? The circumstances may not be the same, but what parts can you recreate and build into your life now? What are your values? What are the most healthy qualities and priorities for you? What can you add to your daily routine that tells yourself, “I love you?" What creates meaning? For any of us, if we find and apply our answers we allow ourselves to be a part of the equation, living our values, loving and caring for others, and giving back to ourselves. You can accomplish this. I’d love to work with you as you fulfill your plans for self care in your life and at home. Schedule a free consultation and let's get started.
Make Time for Healing,