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there is always hope
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How being yourself changes everything (includes 3 journaling prompts)

What if we started each day telling ourselves, “have fun and be yourself”. Or “trust yourself. You’re going to do the right thing”?

Or be yourself and the rest will follow.

Or be yourself and everything will fall into place.

Or everything you need is already inside of you.

How different would your days be if you stopped focusing on all the things you think you do wrong and instead chose to focus on all the things you already are?

Notice I ended the sentence at are. Not all the things you are doing. All the things you are. All the things that make you who who are. Because while it’s great to feel a sense of accomplishment, if you need that to love yourself then you’re not doing it for the right reason.

It’s so easy to put conditions on love – especially when it comes to loving ourselves.

“I’ll only like myself when I complete this task or I’ll only give myself a break once I’ve reached xyz goal.”

While I absolutely believe in setting and accomplishing goals, I believe loving ourselves despite our accomplishments or perceived lack thereof is by far the most important (and difficult) skill to master.

This conditional love all started when we were very young. People (especially our parents) attempted to fix or control us so they didn’t have to feel bad. It was easier. And it was all they knew.

But by diligently practicing something new we can create new patterns that serve the greater good for all.

One person changing can positively impact the entire family. This became evident to me a few days ago when I had a conversation with my mom I never thought I’d have.

I felt like all the work I’ve done on myself throughout the years – though lonely and seemingly futile at times – actually made a difference.

She talked to me the way I always wished she would have. She let me speak. She listened. And while we have had many conversations like this in the past several years, this one felt much more powerful.

Because I stopped fighting and surrendered.

She was herself.

And I was just me.

If someone would have told me this were possible when I was a teenager I would have probably rolled my eyes and said, “yeah right.”

Which might be what you’re thinking too. Because when you’re in it, it’s much harder to see a way out of it.

But keep the faith.

And if you only take one thing away from this, let it be this:

The greatest thing you can ever do for you is to tell yourself who you are is okay.

Even if no one else ever sees it, you have to know it.

And when you do, miracles will happen.

 

I will leave you with a few journaling prompts that’ll help you peer into how you’ve been treating yourself and what you can do to start being kinder to you. Remember: be honest with yourself.

1. In what ways are you not treating yourself the way you’d like others to treat you?

2. In what ways do you deny who you are for the sake of other people?

3. What is one thing you can do right now to be kind to yourself?

 

As always, I welcome your questions and comments below.