When is the last time that you did something kind for yourself? Your life is busy, at times emotionally draining, so being kind to yourself is often overlooked. But it is one of the most important things you can do. Waiting for someone else to give your kudos for a job well done or saying thank you, can set expectations and, when not met, can give you an even greater sense of depletion.
We all can run on empty, get cut off on the freeway, run into someone having a bad day who takes it out on you in the grocery store, and it takes every ounce of energy you have left not to derail them. Sound familiar? All perfect times to do something that fills you up. Here are a few things that I do that help:
I call or text a friend out of the blue to say hi.
I push away from my desk and go outside for a few deep breaths, and especially during the fall, a quick 15-minute walk to enjoy the beauty of the trees changing can make a significant impact.
I am notorious for Saturday mornings either putting on a little rock and roll (I don’t think anyone is seeing me dancing…well..…hmmm) or soft, soothing piano music and the shift in my mood for the day is transformative.
I love going to the farmers market and picking up a bunch of beautiful flowers. $5 can go a long way on putting a smile on my heart for the week.
Possibly one of the most significant things you can do, and one that can make at times tearful difference is writing in a journal and making an entry starting like this;
Dear _______, Thank you so much for caring for your friend this week. Helping her out made such a difference, as did asking the woman struggling with public transit if there was something that you could do to help. It’s little things that make a difference, and I want you to know how much I appreciate all that you do.
You had a moment in the grocery store when that woman went a little whacko, but it’s ok. You were tired, it happened, and you need just to let it go. It’s ok, I promise”.
I know that may take some getting used to for some of you. But you do so much; honestly, you do every day. Those of you that have lost your loved ones don’t forget all that you have done. The most important person that you need to be kind to is YOU. The rest will trickle out to everyone around you.
Step back. Stop. Remember how genuinely amazing you are because I know you are.