Why building a relationship with YOURSELF is the most important thing you can do for your HEALTH
I have been in a very reflective place lately as we transition into the Fall. Reflective on the human condition, why we get into our specific patterns, our judgments of self and others, our habits and dependencies. What we each gravitate towards when we are stressed to distract/escape, and how that affects our health as a whole – mind and body.
I have learned how important gratitude is – how empathy, mindfulness, connection and compassion to self and others is key. I have realized that however much we grow, there will still be much growing to do. That this journey of self growth is never ending, and the journey is the richest part. I have also learned that with the right support, connection and community – true, profound CHANGE is possible. We can always get out of a stuck place, we can always shift our internal worlds – if we are wiling to look inside. I am lucky that my professional work life allows me the opportunity to think about these things. I find this to be the spice of life.
What I have seen in the past few years but especially in the past few months is the importance of our relationship to self. The importance of going WITHIN for answers, for strength, for calm – to feel, to endure our painful experiences and daily stresses. So many of us are running AWAY from our inner worlds in every which way – looking to numb the overwhelm, the pain, the discontent, the confusion, the negative self talk. The problem is – the more we run away from the noise and numb the difficult emotions, the more we are abandoning the inner world and emotions that need to be faced, tended to, soothed and looked at. More so, most of our “running away” habits are usually unhealthy and lead to more physical ill health, low energy and worsen our existing conditions.
When pain/discomfort is not felt, it grows – exponentially.
I have been grateful to lead my first ever sugar addiction program. Through this program I have learned so much watching these brave souls give up their unhealthy “comfort tools” and truly face themselves and their emotions – choosing self care and value over the “easy buttons”. The most profound lesson that has come to light and that has led to the most change for my clients is truly understanding the importance of recognizing and believing in our internal VALUE. Truly believing in and tending to our internal worth, our true value. Treating our internal world, with the same love and care we would give our children *THIS IS KEY. Talking kindly to ourselves and believing our self care matters as much as anything else in this world. When we VALUE ourselves, we are less likely to self harm with poor habits. We are more likely to choose to nourish our bodies by paying attention to our emotional selves, and then our emotions actually move and transform out (instead of staying stuck in the body).
When we are constantly running away, judging inwards or talking negatively to ourselves, the anxiety builds. Most people think self care is selfish – but actually it is the most selfless act we can take. When we are more whole, happy beings, when we are kind inside, we end up transforming all of our relationships. We become more empathetic and connected parents, spouses and friends. We spread the love we find and nourish into all aspects of our lives. We are also incredible role models for our children. They will not know how to be kind internally, if we cannot truly show them the way….
When I take a deep breathe and really think about that concept I find a sense of courage and freedom. I remember that I should live fully, not striving for perfection or happiness, but enjoying all the ups and downs, the connections, the adventure. I have learned that I will never be perfect, because perfection does not exist – but through embracing all of my imperfections and loving myself through my process of growth, trial and error, and all of my messy emotions – I can flourish into a strong and grounded loving compassionate person. Self love and value is key. The relationship you hold INSIDE will be the one factor that affects everything in your life…..find the time and tend to it. Lean in….
“Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.” – Brene Brown