Everyone is talking about Self-Love.
However, there is a problem here with all of the “How-To” lists that are floating about.
Why? Because there is one thing that NO ONE is talking about in the “How-To” sea of articles and stories and that is…The REAL WAY in how to make this effective as a daily habit, without putting yourself at the bottom of the list AGAIN.
So YES – let’s talk about this!
Life is busy. Everyone is busy wanting more time and claiming there is not enough of it.
For many of you who work in service industries, it is more challenging to nurture your emotional links if you are constantly taking care of other people. Maybe you not only serve people in your daily work, but it may be that at the end of your day you are coming home to take care of elderly relatives, pets, friends, kids, plants, a side gig, a partner, maybe a side charity, and perhaps a neighbor or two.
IF you look at the clock and tell yourself you are too ‘exhausted’ to nurture, your own emotions, and deal with self-care, then you are instantly in SURVIVAL MODE.
What happens when we run on “survival mode?”
- Do we really survive?
- Are we burning the candle at both ends to a fast-aging, but slow-feed to death?
- Is this where ‘fight or flight’ can take over your entire body and cell system?
I am not talking about just the health of your physical being leading to your body checking out and dying with disease. I am not only addressing your psychological mind where you allow it to spin out of control into a frenzy.
What am I talking about in addition to the above? I am addressing the ‘survival mode’ that slowly kills your soul’s passion, and your own spirit’s own vibrancy, too.
This is where most humans fail in self-care because like a “fad diet” or ‘New Year’s Resolution’ – self-care on the surface level DOES NOT WORK. You will fail to create self-sustaining rituals that work if you do not address what is really going on … on the inside.
This is where I come in to assist, getting to the underlying causes of WHY.
So let us start here.
First, we should look at all of the times you have had to ‘survive’ rather than merely live. Until you address this - no amount of yoga, candles, music, massage, new wardrobes, closet purging, hot baths, self-help books, or even margaritas can help you.
Those are just temporary fixes to get you through to your next meltdown. They do not HEAL the real deal of what is going on. If you look at all of your ‘survival mode’ times head on in pure confrontation, you will see that you have repeatedly put yourself into a pattern.
Once we see the pattern that is ONLY YOURS and tackle it this way, you can then begin to understand your own pathway, not try to heal yourself through someone else’s cookie cutter remedy that is a one-size-fits-all.
- How many times do you feel you have stepped into ‘survival mode’ during stressful times?
- What ways in the past have you managed your own stress?
- What methods have NOT worked vs. which methods worked for “awhile?”
- WHY do you believe the methods that worked for managing stress actually worked? What is the reasoning behind the temporary success?
- How did you remain accountable to yourself?
- Where are your typical “jump on the bandwagon” fad themes in your life? How frequently did you subscribe to “everyone is doing XYZ so I will try it too?”
- WHEN did you wake up to realize that “didn’t work” for you? How far in did you actually go?
Think of it as the same cologne does not smell great on everyone, based on body chemistry. Well, the same nurturing and ‘self-care’ methods DO NOT work for everybody. The key here is to understand your go-to habits, your survival mode, what you instinctively do vs. what you desperately cling to because ‘you think it will help’ – but it is ultimately just another temporary fix.
Seeing who you are and why you do what you do helps you become better at self-care. If you do NOT address the above questions, AND UNDERSTAND your default habits, you limit your own success because you will fall back into the same pattern of not addressing self-care from the core.
READ THAT AGAIN.
Start by monitoring the times you have broken your own promises to yourself.
List your reasoning/justifications.
Examine the frequency of what you claim to be the same excuse…
- How often do you use it and what is the reason behind it? Are you self-sabotaging? Or are you actually afraid you might succeed?
- Take a deeper look at when you are best at maintaining your own efficiency based on your own body clock. Are you a morning person? Are you a night owl? When are you most productive?
Try incorporating your own self-care sanctuary time for yourself during the time when you know you can best carry it out directly related to your productivity time. Do it in baby steps, so you can train yourself to do it and increase the time.
One of the major pitfalls and reasons for failure is people try to bite off more than they can chew, ultimately setting themselves up for failure from the get-go. You will fail less at self-care when you understand that if you do this in small increments, you are actually retraining your brain little by little. By doing it this way it can eventually become a lifestyle shift, not a gigantic transformational shift/change you cannot sustain. This is more reasonable.
Suddenly, you are now succeeding in smaller increments of self-care to be self-actualized into a new habit because you have actually retrained yourself to think and act differently in self-care rather than adopt an idea swiftly with no foundation for success.
This is where we start. You have now started to address how you previously used to merely survive.
From here, you can begin to nurture within because self-care is becoming second nature.
You have the power to change your life from here, because you see what can be possible, rather than examining a list of failures or an endless loop of being stuck of broken self-care tactics.
What works for everyone else, may not work for you. But it is here you must understand your own lifestyle, your own body clock, in order to reset your own mindset. It begins within.
Take a moment to start something small today in self-care. It can begin with something as simple as the word “NO” to something that simply does not resonate within, to set a boundary. It can be a moment of reflection, to give yourself time to think alone without noise and distraction or even doing a mundane household task that brings happiness and peace, because you are fulfilled with knowing you are doing something for yourself that removes negative energy as a ‘to do’ item that is weighing heavily on your shoulders. It will feel like a relief, just to accomplish something to ignite a self-care initiative and carry it through.
Once you begin to accumulate a sense of well-being, you are beginning to nurture the emotional survival links of your past to start new self-loving ways of being for your present day to improve upon what you identified as barely coping/breathing to now thriving in what you can do as the increments grow into a new habit.
It is here, emotionally you can address the idea that you are nurturing yourself from within instead of heavily relying upon external quick-fixes that will fail you because they are not working with the reality of who you really are from the best space and place to succeed.
- Take a moment to become friends with your past failures.
- Forgive yourself for not knowing or understanding yourself better.
- Begin inventory of what you now know about yourself from how you answered the above questions.
Once you begin to understand how YOU function in adopting new nurturing ways for your spirit and soul, you can tap back into your own emotional forgiveness factor, which ultimately sets up your psyche and your physical being for having a better foundation for self-care to truly nurture and begin within.
Mind-body-soul-spirit healing is essential. Doing only one component of it, put you at a disadvantage, because the other three areas are still in survival mode of functioning against the one you're trying to move forward. If you get yourself aligned with all four pillars, you suddenly set yourself up for an opportunity to thrive with the proper base to springboard into success for self-care.
You deserve the opportunity to have something work better in your favor.
Let the nurturing begin! :)