Picture this. You've discovered that taking a particular vitamin or supplement will change your life. You buy a bottle, take it for a few days or weeks, and then several months later find the almost-full bottle sitting on a shelf.
Maybe your commitment to exercise is at 100% as you sign the gym membership and you are motivated beyond belief. Half a year later, you realize you haven't been near the place.
The list of "this is going to change my life" actions goes on and on: drinking more water, going to bed earlier, and so on. Perhaps you are one who makes the commitment and takes every last vitamin in the bottle or goes to the gym as you'd committed to doing. Good for you! Perhaps there's another area where you wonder, "What happened?"
Conversations about self-care commitments-gone-awry have been surfacing from many directions: friends, coaching clients, perfect strangers in the check-out line at the co-op. It makes us wonder, "Have I ever started something that I know would be really good for me and then stopped? And if so, what's that about?"
Is is possible we are being invited to love ourselves in a new way that includes truly taking care of our precious selves? Are we finally realizing the extraordinary beings we are and that we deserve to care for our most valued asset—ourselves? Can we wake all the way up to the idea that we are here on earth by divine appointment?
In the past week I have been part of two large women’s gatherings that focused on self-care. It seems clear that treasuring oneself is an important focus. At my Bold Conversations gathering earlier in the month, a young woman said, “I have never known or seen any woman in my family take good care of herself. I honestly don’t know what it looks like or how to do it.”
Perhaps focusing on the idea of caring for ourselves in authentic ways and spending time with others who do, can support us to bring it up a notch or two.
Here is a passage from my book “Venerable Women: Transform Ourselves, Transform the World” that you may enjoy.Our relationship with ourselves is the most important of all. Being aware of and fulfilling our needs is the most generous thing we can do—for ourselves and for the world. Transforming our own lives first is the core philosophy of venerable living and opens the door to have the empowered lives we’ve secretly (and maybe not so secretly) dreamed of having.
Living with a keen inner awareness of our own needs may feel unfamiliar because we may have been programmed to believe it is selfish to think about ourselves. If we are used to not having our needs met, we may not expect or believe that anything will change.
Inner awareness of what we personally need in each moment offers sweet gems on a day-to-day basis, not only during big transformations. We gain necessary clarity, we open to having our heart’s desires become reality, and we are shown a path to having our needs met. By engaging in the process of honoring ourselves by recognizing and filling our needs, we find that our needs are often gently met. The beautiful and kind result is that our body, mind, spirit, and heart flourish. We experience a life we cherish more and more—and uncover our most empowered selves.