Monday, June 9, 2008

Self Care is Self Love

Self care is a big topic for Mixonian because it took me a long time to grasp that love is not found out there, but in here. Even Jesus was for self care; he literally commanded people, "Love thy neighbor as thyself." I always assumed he meant that we should try to be nice to all the tacky and annoying people who cross our paths.

Self love is not selfish.

We all know that being selfish is not attractive, and we often go to extremes to avoid that condition. As a parent of young children, I remember being determined to encourage my son and daughters not to be selfish. We all know selfish people; we do not care for them. But if you think about it, talking about love is probably easier and more effective than teaching, "Don't be selfish -- or else!"

The beatings will continue until you learn to love. :)

It's not too hard to figure out whether you love yourself or not. Loving people love themselves and others; they feel loved. If you appreciate yourself, you will feel appreciated. If you value yourself, you will feel valued. When I look for love in all the wrong places, I feel unloved, unappreciated(!!!!). That is a high price to pay for this condition: resentment, bad relationships, unhealthy habits.

It begins with me.....or you.

I am responsible for how loved I feel. The same goes for you, too. In Being in Balance: 9 Principles for Creating Habits to Match Your Desires, Wayne Dyer has this to say, "If you're not receivng the love you desire, it seems like a pretty good idea to explore what's creating this state. Obviously, most of us want to placed the blame for lovelessness on something external to ourselves" (147).

Where to start.

If you think about it, life is so full of paradoxes, and love is a biggie. People who think only about their immediate comfort, are not happy. People who only about the comfort of others, are unhappy. Probably you've heard about the psychological construct of "projection", which is so explicit in the Spanish saying that I'll loosely translate as, "Every thief judges others according to his condition (i.e. of being a thief). What you feel about others and toward others reflects your feelings about yourself.

Think about what you really appreciate about yourself. Write down compliments you have received. Make a list of 100 achievements, even the ones often overlooked, like learning to bake a cake, or write a letter.

You rock. If you haven't seen it, check out the free drawing posted yesterday.