by justine

I was reading Andrea Scher’s post This Is Me, Looking Into My Own Eyes with Kindness and I thought about my own self-kindness journey. About the stories I tell myself.

I’ve learned:
When I am feeling shitty it’s because I am saying not nice things to myself. I can’t tell you what these things are, there are no articulated words in my head, but I feel it. A spark in my brain to a negative feeling resonating in my wrists and down my calves.

When I am feeling awesome it’s because I am taking care of myself. When I’m addressing myself with the same voice I’d use for a child or my dog. When I allow myself to do the loving things I’d suggest to a stressed out friend. When I follow my energy levels instead of my To Do list for what I can accomplish. Or when I follow my intuition for what I should work on next.

When I listen to myself, things flow. And when things are flowing, they’re oh-so-good.

And yet, there’s still a voice in my head saying, “You’re taking advantage” and “Don’t you think that’s a bit too much now?” Too much rest, too much playing, too much fun…

I am learning. Each day I try to turn the volume down on the meanness and dial up on the kindness. I listen to myself and I hear. I have rituals that feel 100% self-care for me, like writing in the morning, flossing my teeth, and taking photos. There is no pressure because self-care is more than a mani-pedi. I am focused on learning what I need. Not what anyone else tells me I need. Important distinction.

I have yet to get to the level of comfort that Liz Lamoreux’s e-course aims for in Water Your Soul. But both Andrea’s post above and this e-course suggest there is something to self-portraiture… that it is a way of seeing ourselves.

And if we can see ourselves, then certainly we can take concrete actions to care for ourselves.

What do you do to care for yourself? xo