BE KIND TO YOURSELF
Some days more than others, I find it challenging to be nice to myself. Self-compassion does not always come easy for me, especially when I am already in a foul mood. Luckily, I don't visit the land of negativity very often. Let me share an example. It starts off, usually, first thing in the morning. That age old expression of getting up on the wrong side of the bed seems to express how my day was going already.
First mistake for me was setting myself up for what my perfect day would look like. That is always a train wreck waiting to happen. There are no perfect days. We are not perfect human beings and there is a strong need for me to stop trying to be perfect. I was brought back to reality as I heard our youngest dog barking to go outside, then looking over and seeing Steve sleeping so peacefully. I just threw on my robe and slippers and took the dogs out, muttering to myself the whole time. Hoping to go back to bed when they finished. NOPE! It was 7 AM and the sun was shining through the shutters so Maggie Mae was ready to get up and play. Mr. Cool-dog, Davis, was just wanting to go back to bed for a short bit. Definitely he is not a morning dog.
My perfect day of getting up, going in and taking a long hot shower, washing my hair, playing beauty shop with the dryer, styling brush and straightner was smashed. Picking out clothes, dressing nicely with maybe even some jewelry...all out the window now. I was telling myself that the whole day went down the drain. Basically, just not being nice to not only myself, but the dogs did not get my attention either. Very basic. They were fed, watered, given meds, and then promptly told to go over to their beds and take a chill pill. I was not in the mood for playtime. They are very empathetic dogs and did stay calm and out of my way.
Steve did get up and I was very happy for him and glad that he was able to get caught up on his sleep. (So much easier for me to give compassion to others, as if I did not deserve it, also.) It is important for us to stay healthy and get our rest. Since he can read me like a book, he just made sure that I had coffee for a while longer before talking.
In hindsight, where I made my first mistake was not having a morning ritual of getting up, feet on the floor, stretching up to the sky and saying to myself that this is going to be a wonderful day. It is all in a mindset. Forget the perfect day! However, it could have started much better with a more positive mindset. Instead, I got stuck in my negative thoughts that my perfect day has already shattered before it really even got started.
The sad part is that it took me until 11:00 AM before I could talk to myself in a nice tone. My compassionate inner voice was trying to break through the negative tone. One thing to remember, is that we can't fool everyone. My husband knows me like a book, sometimes even better than I know myself. He told me on my way back to our bedroom to just take my time and enjoy. How compassionate is that? There was a part of me telling myself that I needed to hurry and move quickly or the day would be gone. I started to wonder if I had thought bubbles over my head because he touched on exactly what I was thinking.
Then it occurred to me. Why was I in a hurry? We had no place to go. No time frame to deal with. It is not a selfish thing to take time giving myself the self-compassion that I would give to a good friend. That is exactly where I maneuvered my brain to go. I got out the conditioner that needed extra time to stay on in order to work. This snowballed into giving myself a facial with a mud mask. It did not take much to continue on this path of feeling better. Self-compassion involves a constant attitude of kindness and acceptance toward ourselves as a whole.
The judgment of myself for being so late in pulling my routine off had to be released and the only way to do this was through kindness to myself. There was at one time a commercial about a beauty product that cost a little more than others but the jest was a woman came on the screen to say, "And I am worth it!
We are worth being good and kind to ourselves. All of us suffer from things going on in our lives. The big question is finding something that can move you past that feeling of being imperfect or doing something really dumb like looking for your phone when you are talking on it or looking for glasses when they are on top of your head. Have a sense of humor about it instead of beating yourself up. On a larger scale, if I don't cross off all of my "to do's" on my list, the world will not come to an end so why call myself names?
This quote if from Nataly Kogan. Get rid of the gavel and stop judging how I feel. Allow it and accept it and then ask myself the question about whether or not this is where I want to be and choose what I need to do in order to move onward and upward. Sometimes, for me, it helps to think of what I am grateful for. It is important to be specific. There are so many benefits of self-compassion and worth it for me to grow a garden of self-compassion. We all face struggles but diving in for self-compassion will allow us to face the obstacles in a way that will motivate us to see the bigger picture.