If I don't take care of myself my whole world and perception can mush into impossibility. I mean it. Sure, I am female and therefore my perception is organically and hormonally challenged every so often like clockwork, but I am powerful so long as I invest in my power.
It's been a difficult journey for me to take my eye off of pleasing others and truly invest in myself. Even when it LOOKED like I was investing in myself, I was merely aiming to please others. All those 'courageous' risks I took? Some influenced by chemicals and some influenced by desire to belong or impress? Even those were to please you.
Today I see the world very differently than I did in my twenties. Maturity has colored things more clearly, but I had to invest in myself along the way. Often the investment was against my will, because it made me uncomfortable. I didn't want to do things that are good for me. I wanted to be comfortable enough with myself to sleep at night and that happened one of two ways - pleasing you and making no enemies during the day, or passing out through excessive use of chemicals to change the way I felt.
Today I invest in my mornings. There is too much noise in the world. I need quiet to start my day. I need to exercise my body and welcome it into the world, forcing a release of the chemicals and hormones that help me to make wiser choices - for me. I do this through exercise. Then I meditate, pray, journal/blog...
When I do these things I am investing in myself. When I invest in myself I am more likely to make connections with others during the day. I am powerful. I want to use that power wisely. I want to please my spirit and care for my mind and body so that I can learn to love all of me.
Then I can love all of you.
And be useful.
I fall off the 'self-care-wagon' often. When I do I fall into self-judgement and self-pity. I eat a pint of ice cream or a whole pizza to myself. Then I have to make the next choice after that. Accept it, celebrate sugar and salt and cheese, and then do better? Or fall into a tailspin. Once I get into enough pain about how I'm behaving and how I feel about myself, I'll pick myself up and start again. And again. And again. And again. And I'll be damned if I'm not improving over the long haul.
Today I invest in my creativity. My voice. The power of collaboration. I am reaching out to other folks who care for themselves to build my capacity to serve others and seek improvement for all of us.
What can you do today to better care for YOU? Choose one small thing to do. Then DO that thang. If it doesn't happen, try again tomorrow. Seek progress.