The month of February has always been the month of Love for me. There is always so much conversation that goes around about how Valentine's day was created by corporations who just want to make money off of us consumers. Regardless of why it was created, I Love that there is a day in the year where we can celebrate the Love that we have for each other, and not only for each other but the Love we have for our self as well.
Earlier this month our guests, The DM Show, made a great point about the oxygen mask mentality. You know when you get onto the airplane and the flight attendants tell you to put your own oxygen mask on in an emergency before you put your child's mask on or anyone else that may be needing assistance? Mothers are the worst at this because it is built into many of our DNA's to nurture and care for others and many of us forget to Love ourselves, to care for ourselves, to make sure that we are breathing and enjoying this crazy shit we call life.
The concept behind self-Love is so easy when you read about it on the internet or a book, or a blog such as this one, the concept is easy but actually implementing it is hard.
Here are 3 reasons why
1. You Feel Guilty
You feel guilty because when you focus on yourself for the first time, it feels like you are taking away from taking care of your family, your friends or whoever it is that you are caring for. That guilt is normal, but your family and your Loved ones should surely understand when you take some time out for yourself. It is vital for all of us.
2. You Feel Selfish
You feel selfish for taking away from those that you are caring for 100% of the time so when you start to do things for yourself it feels awkward and you associate that with selfishness. This feeling is also normal. Many of us, if not all of us, will feel selfish at some point but look at it this way, if you take care of yourself for even 30-minutes a day you still have 97% of your day to focus on your Loved ones, I don't think that is selfish at all!
3. You Don't Know How
People say all the time, "focus on you and Love yourself" and you might be like me where you are nodding your head and you're like, "FUCK YES BITCH!! I DO NEED TO LOVE MYSELF!" But in your head you're probably like, "how do I even do that? Do I go home and hug myself, what the fuck do I do??" Obviously I have been there before so keep reading and I'll tell you how to start...
So just like the oxygen mask mentality, you can't truly care for others if you aren't caring about yourself. You can't expect to save other people if you aren't alive yourself, right?
If you are feeling like you want to start this whole self-Love thing, here are some simple and yet effective ways to show yourself some self-Love.
Make the Time
Time is generally the biggest excuse why people can't or won't take the time to care for themselves. The excuse, "there is not enough time in the day" is by far the worst excuse I've ever heard in my life. If Beyonce can become the bad ass bitch she is and she is given the same amount of hours a day as you, you can give a shit about yourself! So, I encourage you to wake up 30-minute earlier every day or go to bed 30-minutes later and do something just for you. This could be something as small as watching your favorite Friends re-run or reading a good book for 30-minutes. Give your bestie a phone call and catch up, literally whatever you want to do for you. It's 30-minutes, make the time.
Be in the Moment
Being in the moment requires you to be self-aware and being self-aware requires you to acknowledge the thoughts that come into your mind. Give this a try; when you go to take a shower tonight don't think about anything else other than the fact that you are in the shower. Don't think about what you need to do when you get out of the shower, or what groceries you need to buy, or the 5 million tasks on your to-do list. Think about the warm water hitting the crown of your head. Think about the smell of your soap and the softness of your loofa. Be in the moment. Enjoy your shower! Being in the moment releases the stress and many of us are just bogged down with daily stress it's overwhelming, even in moments of relaxation like a warm shower.
Do Something By Yourself
Once a month go do something by yourself. I know as mom's we can allow all of our responsibilities to get to us and time passes and we've forgotten that we are also women, women who need time to do our own thing. I have spoken to so many moms out there who tell me that their greatest joy in life is to literally go to Target by themselves. No screaming child, no crying, no begging for new toys, just a mom wanting to shop in peace. When I have given this advice to some moms, they will tell me, "I don't have anyone to watch my kids." Look, I truly believe that there are many people out there that are willing to help you if they know you need help. If you are a mom who has a ton of pride and feel like you don't need help, and believe me I once was very much like this, it's okay… it is 100% okay to need help and want it and take people up on their offer to help you or ask them! When you finally have the courage to ask someone to help you watch your kid for 1 hour once a month, you will be so shocked at the many people who are willing to help you.
Self-Love is one of those things that we were never taught when we were younger because it wasn't something that was ever talked about. And now we all know we need to do it but we don't know how. Start small but start. Love takes many forms and the one that is even more important than falling in Love with a significant other or the Love you have for your kids is the Love you have for yourself. You will notice that the more you Love yourself, the happier the people around you will be as well. Love is infectious and when you Love yourself the energy you give to others is undeniably noticed.