self care is self love. 5 things to START doing for your own survival.
monday morning coffee
Hey thought thinkers. Last week we talked a little bit about the toxic infrastructure of the strong black woman monicker and how this superwoman complex, is literally KILLING US.
Now it’s time, for those of us who have neglected to give to ourselves, what we so freely give to the world: LOVE, and in particular, self love.
I must continue to reiterate that we can no longer afford to continue to do EVERYTHING for EVERYONE while neglecting our own basic needs. Today I will share 5 smalls ways to ease into the process of ritualizing self care.
1. This first one might be the hardest one for many of you, too strong for TV women, who have never stopped to pat yourself on the back for a job well done. Pat yourself on the back, for a job well done. How about you stand in front of a mirror and acknowledge the long and hard journey you continue to succeed at, often with little to no help. Then if you are feeling comfortable tell the person staring back at you that you love her, just because. Through the highs and lows, together, you have gotten through it all.
2. Stay at the mirror. Strip down to your bare nakedness and look at ALL of you. Of course you are not going to like everything you see. Funny, because most of what you don’t like about yourself, is simply what you have been told or shown, by unrealistic, airbrushed societal norms. OK, I digress. Back to you! Now tell yourself one thing you like about your body. Say it again and keep saying it until joy forms around your mouth releasing a smile.
3. Have you ever thought about what it is that you like? Self care will look different for everyone. I like long baths with expensive oils and rich body butters lathered on my body only to slip into soft pajamas, quality sheets and a good book about nothing. You may find joy in jumping on the bed to your favorite song or simply being able to take an uninterrupted nap. Whatever it is, invest the same quality of time, you make to be at the beck and call for others, for yourself. You heard me. MAKE TIME.
4. Learn something new. Enhance who you are. Be intentional with acts of self love. Drink more water. Exercise, learn to cook, read a good book, take a bathe, listen to your favorite music, have a one woman fashion show, do something you always wanted to do or just have a good cry. You could even forgive yourself.
5. Learn to say the word NO as a complete sentence. Learning this may be your best defense against giving more of yourself than you really have to give. Explore why it is that you cannot tell others no. Question why you are not a priority to yourself and then have the audacity to believe that you deserve the best from you.
Making oneself a priority is not easy, especially when you have been socially brainwashed to be the backbone and the literal back for those in your life to walk across. Not only does this hurt you but it creates unhealthy co-dependency. Your need to be needed vs.those you serve becoming unable or unwilling to do things for themselves. Remember you cannot give from a whole place if you are not whole.
P.S. Now that you have given yourself permission to be with you, seek professional help.
You need therapy girl.
We all do!