Hi! I missed you.
While I was on my trip last week, I spent a lot of time hiking and backpacking, which meant I spent a lot of time thinking. Long hikes are a great way to work through your thoughts and feelings, especially solo, but even when you are with a partner who isn’t too chatty. I realized my thoughts often turned to my ex, even though I was in a good mood, and I then became sad. Instead of allowing myself to enjoy the happiness and peace of the present moment, my brain brought me back down to a more familiar place. It subtly and insidiously sabotaged me.
You probably do this also. Maybe, like me, you are so used to this quiet self-sabotage that it feels like a normal part of your thought process. Maybe you too never quite allow yourself to feel entirely happy in your own body, in the moment. It’s not on purpose, but most of us don’t understand how to love ourselves and put our own needs first.
Living in a world that tells us we are selfish and uncaring if we do prioritize ourselves is definitely part of the problem. The truth is, you are the love of your own life. We all are. So why do we expend the majority of our time and energy on our relationships with others? Why do we consistently give our power away, thrusting it into the hands of those who abuse, misuse, or simply don’t appreciate us? If we don’t know how to love ourselves properly, how can we possibly expect anyone else to do so?
I’m not saying you should abandon relationships with others – obviously that isn’t healthy or fulfilling. I do want you to believe in yourself and your importance and stop giving your power away, which leaves your happiness in their hands. I know – I’ve done this my entire life. It took me decades to even begin to understand what it means to actually love and respect myself.
Maybe you’re afraid that if you truly love and prioritize yourself, no one will understand. Maybe you think they’ll judge you because they don’t know how to show the same respect to themselves. Maybe you don’t set boundaries because you’re afraid that the people around you won’t like them or will even leave you.
Throw those old beliefs away. You deserve nothing less than complete love and approval for yourself. Does that make it simple to shift the patterns? No, but recognizing your own worth and starting to behave in ways that reinforce that knowledge is a great place to begin.
We are taught that we have to take care of everyone else above ourselves, when in reality we must meet our own needs first in order to engage in healthy relationships. You know what happens when you abandon your needs for those of others? You never have anything left for yourself at the end of the day, and you grow resentful and exhausted. What’s the point of that? If you can’t be there for your circle in a way that feels meaningful and appropriate, you aren’t helping anyone. Take care of you. You matter. What you need matters. You are important too.
You are the love of your own life. You have to be. No one else can give you what you feel is missing – everything you need is inside you. Even if it feels impossible to believe in this moment, it’s true.
You really can learn to love, respect, and trust yourself. I believe in you. You got this. Sending you all the hugs in the world.