“Treat yourself like someone you love” only works if you have a healthy relationship with LOVE
the other day i posed the question, how do you “DO” self love?
i think many of us talk about it, but how many of us actually BE about it? what does it mean to DO it? to take ACTION?
i was chatting with a client last week and we spoke about how awareness is the first step, but the only thing that has the power to change anything in our lives is ACTION.
and yet, how many of us are stuck?
aware and stuck.
i have been pondering this conversation and contemplating how i can help.
what’s the catalyst to move from awareness into action?
i recalled that in the past, i have shared with my clients that a very simple way to begin the practice of self love is to think of someone or something that you love and write down 5 ways you treat them.
that list might look like:
i pay attention and really listen when they speak to me
i spend quality, uninterrupted time with them
i honor their needs
i respect their boundaries
i have fun with them and play with them
but this morning, i realized– this list– is the ideal way i’d treat them. it’s how i feel i should treat them.
and then i asked myself a hard question, is it what i DO?
and i’m a bit embarrassed to say, that with the specific person i was thinking of, my honest answer was, “nope.”
here’s how my list would look if we were evaluating my ACTIONS:
i put her after most other things
i am often distracted in our quality time
i am frequently tired when we’re together
i can be lazy and allow things to run on autopilot
i can be impatient and energetically demanding
if this is true, then me telling me to treat myself like someone i love means to put me after everything else, be distracted and not present, be lazy with my care, make thoughtless choices, run myself down, and hold high and unrealistic expectations and throw a fit when they go unmet.
that’s when i realized, THAT is actually the bigger conversation.
many of us will want to
redefine our relationship to LOVE
and, i hear you… HOOOOOWWWWWWWWW?????????
so, here’s my encouragement…
if this applies to you (and i know it won’t apply to everyone), don’t make your ideal list wrong.
i believe it’s your inner child speaking. celebrate that– celebrate her.
there is a divine feminine energy in you that longs to nurture and love and care for self and others.
allow that– allow her desires and longings to be exposed.
pick one thing from your list.
i know our precious human brain wants to go from not-love to love immediately and zip from a zero to a ten in 0.5 second flat and while all of that is cute, it is unrealistic and not at all sustainable.
so, if you’re committed to implementing actionable self-love, pick one thing.
and then practice.
practice toward others and practice toward self.
and reverse the order.
practice toward self and then practice toward them.
we cannot give what we do not possess.
i choose “i pay attention and really listen when they speak”.
so, from this place of choice, how can i pay attention and really listen when i speak?
for me, the first step is giving myself a voice.
i’ve begun pausing throughout the day and asking myself, “what do you want right now?” or “what do you need in this moment?” and then i’ve been listening.
if my back hurts and wants to lie down, i create space for that.
if my eyes are tired and want to rest, i let that be okay.
if my body is craving food, i feed her.
if my heart is longing for connection, i find ways to give that to her.
it’s not hard. but it does take practice.
and i’m worth it.
and so are you.