Thursday, January 10, 2013
Like clockwork, all the imagery is about improving ourselves, we are encouraged to "turn over a new leaf" and get "back in shape!"
That is all fine except one thing. Self-reflecting, self-nurturing, taking stock should not be an annual ritual. It should not be a novelty that follows a time when we are universally encouraged to think more of others. Isn't brilliant marketing to quickly shift from the holidays when we think almost exclusively of others to focusing solely on ourselves - and especially our appearance? Brilliant and toxic - all at once. We are much more than how we look. We are spiritual beings and taking time to spend time thinking about and nurturing ourselves should not be annual pass time. We need to make self-reflection a regular pass time. Here are the reasons why:
What We Think About, We Care About
Have you ever noticed where you spend your time? It is super, no make that uber important to be mindful of how we spend our time. Where we spend our time and energy reflects what important to us. Now, if you spend almost no time thinking about yourself, your actions, your needs - how likely do you believe it is that you will be able to move the needle in your life. We have to give ourselves time and space to think about us - think all about me. What I love? What I hate? Where do I want to be someday? What am I doing to get there? We must think of ourselves and this is especially true for moms who tend to be among the most selfless folks on the planet. Thinking of and caring for yourself is not selfish, it is essential - especially if you intend to care for others.
Caring For Ourselves Makes Us Care Better For Others
This is a fact. I remember early in my motherhood, I had a martyr like view of being a mom. "If I can do everything for Emma, show her how much I love her, all will be well," was the chief deception I held in the early days. This was also present within my marriage. "I will do anything to show Isael that I appreciate him, his family, his culture so he knows I love him," was the place I operated from. Then the demands of a second child arrived with sweet Evan and work pressures pressed in and one day I noticed how I'd skip a hair appointment or not make time for myself on a regular basis. I got a glance of myself in the mirror and I was a hot mess. It hit me like a ton of bricks. I looked liked hell and felt worse. What did I have to give to my sweet young family? Nothing and I stopped that practice in its tracks. Today, I am stingy about daily quiet time in the morning. I make time to run weekly. Monthly I get a manicure. I feel fantastic and that flows over into my roles as a wife and mom. I care for myself so THAT I can care for others.
I challenge you in the new year to take time for you every day remembering how it will help you and those you do life with. Taking time only once a year to reflect and focus on you is not nearly enough. If the daily ask is too big of a stretch, then I say start with "monthly me times". Pick a time each month to think and do just for you. Then graduate up to weekly so that by the end of this year you can make your self-reflection and self-nurturing a daily habit.
Come back to our blog throughout this year and we'll give you encouragement in this task often.
You are worth it!