What did life teach you about your pain?
What were the messages you were given? Were you met with patience? Love? Were your feelings understood? Were you given time to deal with your emotions?
Most people were made to feel bad about their feelings, that they shouldn’t feel them, or they were exaggerating, or they needed to get over it and toughen up.
As a human, and a therapist, I struggle with re-learning and teaching how to think about our needs. Self-care, is not just a bubble bath, a steak dinner, or buying yourself a nice present. Self-care is about respecting your feelings, allowing them to come and pass, without pounding all the self-judgement and shame about the feelings on top of them. Self care is about being impeccable with yourself. It’s about making commitments to the things that matter to you and doing them. It’s saying “no,” trusting your instincts, and being easy with yourself. It’s about treating yourself, as you would your best friends, or your children. It means being compassionate with yourself.
There is no more important life skill to learn than this. Yet, we struggle with it in so many moments during the day. When we judge ourselves harshly. When we make excuses to put ourselves and our needs last. When we constantly beat ourselves up over past mistakes, and in the saddest moments, when we tell ourselves we can’t, and let a dream of ours die.
Take time this week to notice your feelings, honor them, and allow. Your will be amazed at how much it changes your perspective. Self care isn’t just a novel idea, it is a necessity.