Monday, May 30, 2011

Love yourself first.

Plant your own garden and decorate your own soul instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers. ~Veronica A. Shoffstall

Do you remember the first thing that entered into your mind today when you first woke up? How about when you were showering or making coffee or driving to an activity or work. What were you thinking about. Do you even remember?

I will bet that you were either criticizing yourself or thinking about something that needed to be done for someone else.

We all do it. And we do it way too often.

What we hardly ever do when we wake up is to start our day by loving ourselves. We don't say "good morning" to ourselves and plan our day to please ourselves. That would seem way too narcissistic and self-centered, right? And who has time for that anyway.

And we may actually think we are doing things for ourselves. We may exercise, but, if we were honest, we would recognize that we are doing it because our inner critic thinks we are perhaps a bit too fat. And that is not really self love. Or we may dress a certain way or try to look a certain way, and it may seem as though we are trying to please ourselves, but most times we do that for others, not ourselves. And most times we feel as though we never measure up anyway, no matter what we do.

The list goes on and on.

And when we do finally get around to doing something just for ourselves, we feel bad. Selfish and guilty.

We need to stop all that. Yes, we really do.

I see so many people at the end of a life; their life. The only one they get. But most did not really live too many days of that life just for themselves. They did not always take the time to love themselves enough. And many really regret that. They really do.

I am not saying that you should become self centered and never care for anyone. I am saying that you need to love yourself first to be better equipped to love others more. And in doing so, it will bring more love and happiness into your own life.

It is not easy to do, to love ourselves. So we instead do other things. We numb ourselves. We eat too much. We spend too much. We watch too much dumb TV to escape ourselves. And we justify doing this because we think that we "deserve it." But we never really feel better, do we. It is really more like we are punishing ourselves, not rewarding ourselves. And certainly not loving ourselves.

So tomorrow when you wake up, start thinking first of yourself. Feel what you feel. Love yourself enough to feed yourself good food and take deep breaths and relax, even for just a few moments. Tell someone "no" when you really do not want to do something. (No is actually a complete sentence.) Do things that 'feel' good instead of always 'doing' good. Think of something that you just "don't have the time for," like walking, knitting, ice skating, reading, swimming or whatever you enjoy but have not done and find at least 30 minutes this week to do them. Find me time. Schedule me time. Be a good example to others what self love looks like. Teach your kids this. It will be the most important thing you teach them. Model by doing. Stop being a martyr. Start loving yourself.

You get one shot at this. One life that really only belongs to you. You do. I wish I could scream this from my rooftop, that is how important it is.

Days, weeks, years, decades go by and you look back and you wonder, where did I go. What happened to me? What was I so afraid of?

So, love yourself first. Have a love affair with yourself. Don't wait. You are worth it. You really are.

It's not your job to like me - it's mine~~~Byron Katie

To love yourself right now, just as you are, is to give yourself heaven. Don't wait until you die. If you wait, you die now. If you love, you live now.
~~~Alan Cohen

You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.

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