Happy Holidays, everyone.
In the season of giving, many of us fail to meet our own needs or even allow ourselves to receive from others. For those of us who have trouble prioritizing ourselves on normal days, this time of year can prove overwhelming.
If you were conditioned at some point in your life to believe that you are wrong for having needs, that you are only worthy if you take care of others, or that receiving is dangerous, it is difficult to reprogram those deeply ingrained mental patterns. Be patient if you have no idea how to take care of yourself. If you’re anything like me, you only got love when you gave something as a child, so now you give and give and give, always hoping that your immense generosity brings you affection in return. The problem is that you don’t know what to do with that if you do get it. You block vulnerability by always giving, because it’s far more terrifying to let yourself receive.
If no one ever gave to you, especially if they never gave to you freely, your nervous system does not understand that receiving is safe. Instead it feels dangerous. The threat of impending pain is far worse than never getting the same love you give out, so you close yourself off, shut yourself down. You continue to pour out all your energy to others, because you don’t even know how to receive from yourself.
It may sound crazy, but it’s true – most of us who overgive don’t have the slightest idea how to give to ourselves. We’re great at pouring our generosity out onto others, but cannot take care of our own energy and protect it. Thus we often burn out, become resentful, even turn into a bitter, withdrawn shadow of what we once were.
You don’t want to be an empty shell of a person. I’m sure of it. Taking care of yourself first is NOT selfish. I know that’s what you were taught to think. I know that someone – maybe many people – influential in your life made you feel as if you are not good enough to deserve your own love. That’s a lie, my sweet soul. It’s perhaps the biggest, cruelest lie you were ever told.
Attending to your own needs first does not make you a bad person. It actually makes you a very smart, caring, and expansive being. By nurturing your needs and your energy, you allow yourself to fill up and be your best. Only then can you truly support and tend to others – only when it comes from a place of fulfillment within you.
You are more worthy of your attention than any other soul on this earth. You matter so fucking much. There’s no point in giving if at the end of the day, you have nothing left for yourself.
I LOVE YOU. Now take a deep breath and go take care of you.