This year, my goal is to do more of what I like.
More of what I love.
More of what makes me happy.
It sounds simple, huh?
But somehow, it’s not so simple.
And the things worth having, don’t always come easy.
Sometimes life presents us with opportunities to learn, and if we don’t learn the lesson first time, life will present that opportunity again and again until we do.
The world has bought to me a lesson, which I thought I had learnt, but it turns out that I needed a gentle reminder.
That lesson is of giving away so much of your Self, that you have nothing left to give to those that you actually want to give to, and most importantly, you have nothing left to give to yourself.
This post is about the value of self care.
When we give all of our attention and time to something that is not giving us as much back in return, we feel depleted.
Our sense of Self becomes covered in outside layers. Layers that can include work, family, friends, obligations, the “I should’s”, errands, etc, etc, etc, you know how it goes.
Take work as an example as we spend so much of our day there. We sometimes use work to define our Self, so it’s almost an extension of us.
It’s there for at least 8 hours of our day, 5 days a week, sometimes more. It can also consume brain space in the time before and after business hours, and on the weekends, when our brains are supposed to be enjoying other pursuits.
What happens to our minds, our bodies and our spirit, when we no longer have the time or energy for them? When work consumes us to the point that we are constantly thinking about, worrying about the next day, or the next week?
What happens to our sense of Self? Where does it go? And, how do we get it back when we start to lose them?
These outside layers can suffocate, diminish the Self and feel unjustifiably heavy. And there are times when it feels way too much.
The overwhelm is overwhelming.
When the work is too much of a load to bear, when we are asked to do project after project, when we have a deadline that needs to be met, if we have a colleague who is not pulling their weight or even just the day to day demands of answering questions.
When we find ourselves trapped in the overwhelm, when we are just too caught up, we don’t notice what is going on inside us, and we can begin to feel helpless.
In the past when it’s happened to me, I have coped by shutting myself away from the good. The light. The happy. And allowing the work to envelope me.
I think, this won’t last, I can wait this out, next week things will be better.
It can mean we hide away from our friends and family. That we binge on junk food, or the opposite, we starve ourselves, we over exercise, we shop for the sake of shopping. We become stuck inside our own heads and we believe the self doubt.
We believe that we are not good enough, and that someone is going to find out sooner rather than later, that we are a big fat fraud.
It’s hard when you create this around yourself. And on the flip side, it is also hard when you see others creating it for themselves.
Because only you can get yourself out of the overwhelm. If you are lucky enough to have friends and family around you that notice this difference, then they can help to pull you out. Or they can prevent you from falling further.
If you notice the feeling of overwhelm as it starts to settle over your shoulders, you can be pro active and do something about it.
And it’s being your own cheerleader. With or without the pom poms.
Your friends, family, work colleagues can help to a certain extent, but it really comes down to you.
To personal responsibility.
It’s the feeling of self love. The knowing of self worth. The knowing that you are comfortable in your own skin, no matter what.
I’ve found that to keep that, a little self care is required.
For me that includes yoga, writing, reading, kate&frances, travel, talk to my plant babies, a foot spa, massage, sleep, and Kate-friendly food are necessary. It means surrounding myself with the things, the activities and the people I love.
The things that make my soul relax and my breathing calm.
It’s the things that allow all of my senses to turn off and I can just be. Without judgement, without expectation and without comparison.
And sometimes we need that gentle reminder.
Like that text message that reads, “Put it off for today and just take care of KATE.”
That gentle reminder that you get to choose happiness. You get to choose what it is you want to do and who you want to be.
That gentle reminder that you are the one that gets to choose how you feel.
That gentle reminder that generates self love, self confidence and self worth.
This year, I’m choosing to do more of what makes me happy. And it is going to be that simple.