As we continue with our Holistic Wellbeing Series, this month we are focusing on the relationship that we have with ourselves, and how vital it is to our overall wellbeing in every day life.
The relationship you have with yourself is by far the most vital because it is the driving force that influences all your interactions and experiences in life, and how you choose to navigate them. How you feel deep down about yourself can impact your perceptions, reactions and behaviour towards everyone and everything in your life.
So, the importance of talking to ourselves well, and treating ourselves with kindness and compassion, is crucial to our overall wellbeing and our ability to show up as the best version of ourselves and truly experience all life has to offer in a positive way.
If you don’t already, it’s time to make a conscious choice to respect yourself and treat yourself in a nurturing way as you do for others- to honour your worth and your needs daily, without feeling like you need to change or meet certain criteria to be worthy of joy, love, and kindness.
The following things are great ways to ensure you treat yourself well:
Be Conscious of Your Thoughts and Self-Talk
It is so important that we are conscious of keeping our thoughts and self-talk in check. We are often our own worst critic, being harder on ourselves than we ever would be with others.
Would you say half of the negative things you think about yourself to someone that you care about? Think about that the next time you start negative self-talk or setting unrealistic expectations for yourself. If you wouldn’t say it to your friend, mum, or sister, then why say it about yourself?
Also, think about how you react if someone gives you a compliment or acknowledges a job well done. Do you accept it, really take it on board and say thank you, or do you brush it off as luck and not even register what is being given to you? Accept that positive feedback!
Remember, You Are Magic, Just as You Are
Everyone just wants to be loved, that is a given. The problem arises when we feel we are not lovable or worthy just being ourselves, but that we need to change something about ourselves, or we need to accomplish specific things, in order to be loved, valued or worthy.
Often, we set ourselves goals and think once we have achieved them, then we will be happy, and everyone will place more value on us. Striving for personal growth is great, but it has to come from a place of recognising our worth initially, and wanting to enhance our life, rather than thinking that changing certain things about ourselves will fulfil a condition to become worthy of good things.
In a lot of circumstances, we reach a goal and still feel unfulfilled, and our relationship with the outside world and those in it goes unchanged. And that’s often because we don’t need to change our appearance, grades at school, job title, or bank balance. We need to change our inner dialogue, our perspective about who we are, and our definition of worthiness. We need to recognise our own magic, and that we are worthy of good things already, just as we are.
Many feel guilty about this- believing that if you are prioritising yourself and your needs that you are being self-centred or selfish. But it is actually quite the opposite, because when you take care of your own needs first, you are then in a much better position to give the best version of you to the people and things that you care about.
Know that your needs matter. Focus on yourself, and the person that you genuinely want to be, rather than the kind of person you think you should be according to others.
If you prioritise yourself, you are in a much better position to tackle life’s ups and downs in a way that will allow you to come through the other side with more strength and learning from the things you struggle with than you had before. Treat those things you struggle with in life as opportunities to learn and grow as a person, rather than hindrances that affect your self-esteem and self-worth. And each time you try to overcome obstacles, be proud of yourself and recognise that you are steering yourself on a path of true growth.
Don’t Compare Yourself to Someone Else
Rather than constantly comparing yourself and your life to others, try to concentrate on your own growth and remember, absolutely no one is perfect. No one has it all together and figured out- everyone is battling something. We often only see or hear about people’s highlight reels, and this is a recipe for feeling like we are falling short if we constantly compare ourselves to this- it’s not realistic, and it’s not even their entire reality.
Your gut feelings are brilliant at giving you the messages that you need to take notice of and follow. Everyone is an individual, and what works for someone else will not necessarily work for you. Follow your inner voice when it comes to making choices and decisions that will enhance your life and allow you to thrive.
Create Joy for Yourself
It’s so important to carve out space in your life to create and accept joy daily. When we solely rely on external criteria and people to provide us with joy and satisfaction, we are often disappointed when, or if, they fall short. Allowing yourself to learn what will truly bring you joy, and loving yourself enough to create that for yourself is crucial to treating yourself well.
Make sure that you are providing yourself with the kindness, forgiveness, and patience you so freely give to others daily. And remember, we have people in our lives that love us for who we are, see our value, and appreciate our worth. Make sure you are seeing that in yourself too.