This isn’t a plug for my book. (It should be obvious to you, by now, that I suck at self-promotion.) This post comes from an observation that I’m not as evolved as Seeing My Path indicated. I ended that book by saying that I acknowledged myself, that I truly saw myself, and that I liked what I saw.
That wasn’t enough.
It’s not possible to make that declaration and simply move on, just as it’s not possible to plant Early Girl tomatoes, say a few nurturing words, and ignore them until the shiny red globes scream to be picked. Without regular attention, those fruits will be cracked and split and assaulted by aphids.
I can’t say to myself, “Yep, you’ve been through the ringer, but you came out swinging and I like you for that!” and assume my job is done.
Liking myself – liking yourself – isn’t a one time, cross-it-off-the-list kind of job.
I’m not talking about the New Age, self-care approach to liking yourself. I don’t mean penciling time on the schedule for a spa treatment, or a wine and Netflix binge on the occasional weekend. (Although, those things are akin to fertilizer and sunshine.) I’m talking about the hauling water/chopping wood kind of work that must be done daily. I’m talking about making your priorities known, and giving them the same importance that you give to the priorities of others.
- Are you aware of moments in the day when you compromised your beliefs?
- Are you seeing how, in an effort to keep the peace, you relinquished your dreams?
- Are you quick to put yourself last to benefit the group?
- Are your sacrifices whittling away at your core?
- Have you looked in the mirror only to discover that you aren’t seeing the real you in your reflection, but some vapid woman who has turned accommodating into an Olympic sport?
- Are you making sure that your needs are on the list, next to the needs of everyone else in the family?
Without attention to the detail of liking yourself, the slippery slope becomes that much slipperier. (It’s a word – I checked – and a fine one, too.) Without planning on doing so, you’ve caved on your preferences, which leads to caving on ideals. Morals and integrity will soon be racing each other to see who gets to the bottom of the slope first. You look around and realize that while you were busy tending to everyone else, none of your needs have been met.
Once all those things that created the person you liked – or, dare I say, admired – are at the bottom of the slope, you are faced with having to hall them back up.
That’s when you take yourself by the hand, start the steady climb up and say to yourself, “I am a priority, too.”