Do you really love yourself?

One of my favorite love-based movies is Valentine’s Day.  It’s about a girl who desperately throws herself on men and can’t understand why nothing ever materializes. It’s a little bit about finding self respect before sharing that love with others.  (I am a HUGE sucker for romantic comedies, even if they are sexist.)6

Traditionally, February is all about finding love, the color red, heart health, and a lot of single people feeling lonely because they don’t have anyone to love on them. But, what we should be really focusing on is one key thing that can literally change the world:  Loving yourself first.

I’m writing a series of articles that will be focused on loving yourself, because let’s face it, that is really all you have, is yourself.  Loving yourself, truly loving and valuing yourself solves all the other issues in life, so it’s a very important, but often neglected, subject.

The easiest way to show yourself some love is in the form of “self-care.” 

If you have ever flown a plane, you know that in the safety instructions, the flight attendant says “put the oxygen mask on yourself FIRST, then help the person next to you” (even if it is your baby).  Why??  Because if you don’t put the oxygen mask on first, you could very possibly pass out and then you’re no good to anyone!

Many of you might think that self-care is the HARDEST way to show yourself how much you love yourself (and that you may still be scratching your head about the validity of the idea of “self-love”), but it’s actually the ONLY way you can:

  • really get ahead in the business world
  • have enough energy to accomplish your goals
  • push through the monkey brain nonsense and have the courage and confidence to be a better person

Self-care is the act of doing what is required in order to function mentally, physically, and emotionally.

It’s not a luxury, it is a necessity. It is not selfish.  Please, drop the martyr complex.  This is a huge lie that many of us have been taught by our parents. Sacrificing yourself has no benefits, to anyone.  If you are sick or dead, how does that help your kids, your staff, or the world?

If you are not taking care of yourself eventually it will lead to

  • overwhelming stress
  • lack of confidence
  • less productivity at work
  • deteriorating relationships with family and friends
  • major health issues like cancer, heart disease, and auto-immune disease (the big 3)

Most people who have a lot of responsibilities to other people, (namely parents, caregivers, managers, execs, teachers) have a harder time of putting their care first because these people are givers by nature, but to a fault.

If you give and give without filling up your cup first, you’re running on empty. You have to fill your gas tank to drive your car and your body is the same way.

Your excuse is not good enough.

People make very valid excuses for not doing things that are good for them.  Excuses are generally reasons people use that may be true, but often are just masks for the real reason they don’t do something.  In this case, not taking care of yourself is literally a sign of a lack of self appreciation.

Would you make an employee work 24 hours a day, performing crucial tasks for you without ever giving them a break, or a kind word? Of course not!

The biggest excuse I hear for not having a self-care routine is TIME.  This was a huge issue for a client I was working with this fall, Sue.  She was a busy working mom of 4 kids, loved to volunteer at church and in the community and loved her job.  She came to me because she was feeling burned out, knew that she was too young to feel that way,  and wanted find joy in the process of life again.  It wasn’t that she was depressed, but she just knew something needed to change.  She already had thyroid issues (no big surprise to me).  She wanted to quiet the “bully” voice that made her feel guilty about not doing everything, and berated her for not being perfect.  Through our 8 weeks together, I helped her use her time differently so that she:

  1. valued her time and didn’t let random things hijack it.
  2. reframed how she perceived declining an opportunity to serve so there was no guilt.
  3. could take real chunks of time for herself, do things that gave her joy, to fill her cup up and feel refreshed when Monday came.

By the end of our time together she had a very different perspective of herself.  The bully was revealed for what it is: a lie, and she was able to stand up to it.

My only regret about working with her is that it was too short.  Eight weeks is a perfect amount of time to LEARN, but I realize now that it takes reinforcement and practice and accountability to make lasting change.

If you are ready for:

  • better mood management
  • Increased Self-Confidence
  • Improved Immunity
  • Better Relationships
  • Higher Productivity 

let’s talk about what it will take for you to start a self care routine.  Stay tuned because I’m going to reveal my best self-care secrets in the next few weeks!

Here is a sneak peek:

“Sleep Better Now!  How sleep effects your relationships and your pocketbook.”

“Three Exercises That Will Drastically Improve Your Energy Level”