It’s February – the month of LOVE. Your opinion about celebrating Valentine’s Day is likely influenced by whether you’re in a relationship or not. Being pampered by your partner can be honey to the soul, but not always. Being single you may roll your eyes and want to hide on your couch, eating too much chocolate while binge watching your favorite TV show.
The Number One Person to LOVE this month...and always
The questions is…do you really love yourself? I’ve spent a lot of time on this topic. Looking back, I now know I didn’t really love myself. I've been overweight and then a fit athlete again, I was a compulsive chocolate eater, but then also counted every calorie I put in my mouth (not good). I tried to be perfect but nothing externally led me to loving myself. I knew I had a long way to go with every personal jab, every compulsive behavior, and every bit of frustration I aimed towards myself.
Today, after many years of peeling back the layers of my own psyche, and taking conscious steps towards self LOVE and love towards others, I’m in a much better place. I still have moments where I find I’m being less than loving towards myself but I keep working on it knowing that every step forward creates a meaningful positive shift. And that’s exactly what I want for you.
My recipe for self-LOVE
In my mind there are two angles to approach self LOVE. One is all about how we react to life as it happens. The second is being intentional about creating moments that nourish our soul. Let’s break that down.
1. Reacting to life in the most loving way
Does this sound familiar? You check 5 things off your to-do list but focus on the 2 things you didn’t get done. You enjoy lying in bed for 5 extra minutes but then beat yourself up that you wasted time you could’ve spent being productive. You finish a project and only focus on the 2 things you could have done better. You really want to say ‘no’ to an invite or someone asking you to help with something but still say ‘yes’. Shall I go on? You get the gist.
I’ve learned that our mind, as powerful as it is, will drive us nuts if left on its own accord. That little voice in our head will tell us that we aren’t good enough, fast enough, giving enough, productive enough, thin enough, young enough….And the problem is that we believe it!
Now please listen closely…this is important.
Research tells us that we react to every situation in life based on subconscious programming we received in early childhood. In our first 6-7 years of our lives we learned what’s worth worrying about, getting mad or sad about, and so much more. And today our minds react to everyday life based on that programming without even realizing it…we are running on autopilot!
What to do?
Every time you have a negative emotion…anger, fear, shame, guilt, hurt, etc. you want to stop. With a conscious mind you want to understand what beliefs your reaction is founded on.
To go back to the above examples…if you didn’t get two things on your to-do list done do you believe you aren’t good enough, fast enough, organized enough? Think back into your childhood and see where you might have picked up the belief that you need to be all these things to feel loved and worthy. Recognize that your reaction to life is built on false conclusions you made as a child. With that understanding you can view today’s situation in a whole new light (see other blogs tagged on the bottom for more info).
2. Proactively creating moments of self-care and self-love
What are you doing on a daily basis to reinforce to yourself that you love yourself? Our executive health coaches may recommend to their clients that they set up a self-LOVE routine. What does this include? It will be different for everyone based on your particular likes. Some examples include the following:
● Regular massages or spa days
● Dance or music classes
● Ballet tickets or tickets to a comedy club
● Daily exercise and concentration on healthy eating
● Epson salt bath with a lavender candle before bed
● Enjoying your favorite dessert or wine occasionally
● Watching funny shows or programs
● Enjoying a good book
● Relaxing sound therapy
● Spending time outdoors in nature
It’s critical to schedule time for you, just like scheduling another appointment for work or your children. Part of self-LOVE is realizing you must come first to be any help to those around you.
“Love yourself enough to set boundaries. Your time and energy are precious. You get to choose how you use it. You teach people how to treat you by deciding what you will and won’t accept.” – Anna Taylor (see blog on "Setting Healthy Boundaries" tagged below)
We have all heard “you can’t pour from an empty cup” and it’s oh so true. If we go down, the whole ship sinks! So let’s prioritize our self-care this month and every month.
Make it a focus in 2020. Take a self-care day and just LOVE on you – the most important person in your life!
At JOYVIAL we believe in you and assist you in meeting all of your health and wellness goals via one-on-one health coaching support. Here is one client’s take on our executive health coaching services:
“Working with JOYVIAL was a great experience and I'd highly recommend it for other working professionals trying to be their best self in all aspects of their life."
Melissa Proctor, Chief Marketing Officer – Atlanta Hawks
So, whether you are looking to increase self-LOVE, manage stress, lose weight, improve your sleep, deal with digestive issues, create more balance in your life, or just want more JOY and excitement in your life, reach out to us. Click the 'Contact' button in the top right corner or simply send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule your free discovery session.