Something has come to my attention lately that I find quite astonishing and frankly, disturbing.
In fact, I’m not even sure how to write about this because it cuts pretty close to the bone for most people.
What is astounding to me is the number of people I come across, not just in my practice but in the outside world, who don’t honor themselves. Either that, or they just plain don’t like themselves. They can’t hold themselves in high esteem.
Now, they don’t usually come out and say “I don’t like myself”, or “I’m not worthy” but it is apparent by their actions.
The don’t eat when they need to. They don’t get enough rest. The don’t do things for themselves. The don’t take care of their health. They don’t engage in activities that fill them up, instead of engaging in activities that are depleting. They have insane schedules. They refuse to reach out to others when they are troubled. The don’t give themselves credit. They tear themselves down. It’s almost an epidemic, at least in our culture.
Now, I’m not immune to this epidemic. I’m feeling a little run down these days, a little wasted. I haven’t been getting enough sleep, eating right, or getting enough exercise. Other things in my life seem to be higher on the list of priorities. I think I like myself and I think most people would say the same about themselves. Yet, I still let myself get out of balance.
Now, you may not be one of these people. Good for you. Please continue to read and pass this along to someone you feel could benefit.
But if you identify with any of this, then read on. (see my earlier post “How Selfish Are You Part I.)
It seems to me that many people take better care of their cars than they do themselves. And I think it’s safe to say that most people take better care of others than they do themselves. Why is that?
Because we’ve been taught that it’s bad to be selfish.
Let’s be clear about one thing, and you don’t need to be a psychologist, anthropologist or sociologist to see the truth of this: we are all basically selfish. It’s the human condition. Everything we do, we do in an attempt to satisfy some kind of physical, emotional or spiritual need. And that’s OK. The question is, can we be ok with that fact?
Now, please understand, I’m not advocating that you forego all the kind and generous things you do for others to focus only on your needs. What I am suggesting is that there needs to be a balance.
If you have something extremely valuable, let’s say for instance, a pet, then you will go out of your way to care for it. Why? Because you realize it’s worth in your life and how it adds to your enjoyment of life. You feed it, bathe it, take it to the vet, give it love, and make sure it’s happy. For Pete’s sake, you even clean up it’s poop!
Here’s what I think is the crux of the problem: most of us simply don’t realize our own value. And if we have some idea of our own value, we have a tendency not to honor it. Why are you valuable? In my opinion, it’s because you were born. I think that because of that fact, you have something to offer here in this life, and life is waiting for your contribution, or already benefitting from it.
Is that true? Well, let me suggest that whether it’s true or not doesn’t matter. It’s simply a really good place to stand. Stand in the place of “I am valuable and have something to offer and I should take the best care of myself that I possibly can so I can do what I came here to do.” It’s the declaration of your own value and self-worth that will help you to do the things that a person of value will do.
If you are valuable, then you deserve the best of care. Because you have something to offer your family, as well as your community, both local and global, than you must be up to offering your unique contribution. And to be up for that you need to be at your best, giving yourself what you need so that you can give to others.
The first thing you should give to yourself is acceptance. Tell yourself “I’m ok. In spite of all the areas of my life where I perceive I fall short, I’m ok and doing the best that I can.”
Being valuable, being worthy, and being ok doesn’t come from what you are doing. If you base your value and worthiness on what you are doing than you run the risk that what you are doing will never be good enough.
Being valuable, worthy, and ok comes from saying that you are and believing it, then looking for areas in your life that support what you say. You will find them.
Let’s throw out the word selfish. How about Self Caring? Are you willing to be self care-ful? Full of care about yourself.
Take care of yourself. We need you around. You have important work to do that only you can do. You may not feel that what you are doing is important but you don’t know what life is preparing you to do. Accept the fact that you are human and will make mistakes. Be your own best friend. Be kind to yourself in word, thought and deed. Accept yourself for who you are and who you are not. Read my weekly quote, which is one of my all time favorites.
Don’t worry about doing it perfect. As the Buddha said on his deathbed, “Do your best”.
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TManTed A. Moreno Certified Hypnotherapist Self Esteem Specialist www.TedMoreno.com