I can’t event count how many times people approach me, hoping that I could give them that one golden secret to losing weight, feeling more energized, tackling their chronic stress, or finding their libido again. We all look for a quick fix, because we don’t have time to take care of ourselves. We’re busy with family, kids, work, elder parents, household chores…. and the list goes on.
We often put ourselves last, give our bodies the wrong fuel every single day, yet expect it to not retaliate. It catches us by surprise when we’re sick and have a hard time recovering (blaming it on our age, kids, or the weather). What are we doing wrong, and where can we finally find that magic pill?
That magic pill, believe or not, is in you!
You, my friend, are able to reach all of your goals, especially health related goals, only if and when you start giving yourself the love and appreciation you deserve. You, who works hard all day long, who takes care of your family members, who takes care of your home, who tries to show a good example to your kids. You DESERVE so much love and respect! And you deserve it from yourself first and foremost.
Don’t get me wrong now. I’m not talking about giving yourself material gifts or going on a shopping spree because you deserve it. I’m sure you do deserve it indeed, but that’s not what I mean… Why? Because those will only make you feel good for a moment or two, until you move on to the next materialistic wish, becoming miserable again until you finally get your hands on it and can call it your own. These joyful moments of wearing a new pair of shoes, driving a new fancy car, or wearing new gorgeous jewellery, will only bring happiness for a limited time. It’s a quick fix at most.
What I’m talking about is how you speak to yourself, in your mind, when you look in the mirror, when you sit down after a long day, and when you have a moment with yourself. Do you ever notice the things you tell yourself? As humans, we tend to verbally abuse ourselves in a way we would never dare to speak to anyone else around us. You would never dare to tell your best friend/partner/child what you say to yourself! And yet you say it many times a day every single day.
Let’s talk about cars again, because I love comparing our bodies to cars. If you have a car you’re dying to replace, most odds are you will not fill up the gasoline until you’re driving on fumes, let alone checking the oil or water, and let’s not even talk about giving it a good wash. You simply don’t love your car, so why take the time and effort to take care of it?
BUT, if you’re driving a car you love, even if it’s old and raggedy, you WILL take care of it, fill up the gas on time, and make sure that that car is feeling the love.
That car your body. If you don’t love, and appreciate the journey it has taken you this whole time, why would you even want to take care of it? Why would you give it the right fuel, and make sure it’s well maintained, if you don’t feel that it deserves it?
The answer is, you wouldn’t. Most people don’t in fact, but it doesn’t have to be that way. We can all start loving and appreciating ourselves more, a step which will help us turn our lives around and make living a much more enjoyable journey.
Steps you can take today towards self-love:
- Forgive yourself – We often tend to be angry with ourselves for not achieving a certain goal, not finishing out to-do list, or having a whole pizza a day after declaring we’re on a diet. Putting yourself down will only make things worse. Instead, try turning that around. Notice everything you did get done, rather than what you didn’t, and give yourself a pat on the back.
- Turn the negative into a positive – This title might be misleading. I am not a big fan of pushing away negative thoughts and emotions. As soon as the negative thought or emotion surfaces, acknowledging it and then trying to find the positive in that situation is a great way to practice positive thinking. Yes, terrible things happen in our lives, and we can always find a positive in them.
- Say no more often – Some of us tend to say yes too much, even when we don’t have the time, energy or capacity for more work. Before you say “yes”, think if by saying yes to others you’re saying no to yourself.
So next time you speak nasty to yourself, remember you’ll be able to archive a lot more, with some gentle love and respect.