Peace and Love Everyone!
I hope all is well with you this week. Things here are as they should be, hectic with some time to hide and do nothing. I make sure that I get some time to escape. No matter what others say, we need a minute to enjoy life.
For this blog I wanted to talk about self love, taking care of you. As I began to think of what I would write I wondered where this movement began. I remember growing up in the 80’s, the thought of self love made you a selfish person. Myself and the generation before were taught that we sacrifice ourselves for those we love. Women often sacrificed their own happiness for the sake of their children and husband.
Now before I go any further I am NOT SAYING that women who are mothers should only think of themselves. That’s ridiculous, and we don’t live in a world of absolutes no matter what many may say. We must remember that if we sacrifice too much of ourselves there is nothing left to give.
Before I started writing I had to google ‘self love’ to see where it all began. Wikipedia presents a lot on the subject. I wouldn’t have thought that it was a term used in the 1500s. It would seem that it was considered a good thing until around the early 1900’s when it was considered to be a bad thing. People who loved themselves were considered selfish, egotistical and brazen amoung other things. Thank goodness it was redefined later in the 20th century as something positive.
“Self-love was first recognized in 1563 but was only later studied by philosophers William James and Erich Fromm, who studied emotional human behaviour, such as self-esteem and self-worth. However, it was later defined in 1956 by psychologist and social philosopher Erich Fromm, who proposed that loving oneself is different from being arrogant, conceited or egocentric, meaning that caring about oneself is taking responsibility for oneself.
Now that it has been redefined there is so much information out there on the subject. Tons of books and websites. There are even YouTube videos.
Now we explore in order to find ways to make ourselves happy and fulfilled. Each person thinking of different ideas and activities. The list is endless.
I know it isn’t easy sometimes. It is imperative to take a minute and figure out where you’ve been and where you are going. Or maybe even gather yourself to think of the next move or nothing at all. For me exercise, meditation and massages are as much an essential part of my self-care as hanging out with friends or letting my mind rest and think of nothing. We’re so bombarded in this life on so many levels with so many things.
An important part of self love for me is taking care of me. Exercise has to be part of it. I try to wake up with enough time to get 15 to 20 minutes Monday to Friday. As the weather gets warmer I ride or walk for a few miles on Saturdays. I alternate between my yoga routine and weights or tai chi and weights. When I don’t stick to my routine I feel horribly guilty. As it is, I wake up by 5:20am or 5:30am to exercise and get ready for work. Then I get breakfast for my daughter and I before I pack lunch and we’re out the door. I try to make my exercise time count. To be a full 30 minutes I need to wake up by 5am. After teaching and grading, then writing lessons for the next day 5 am just isn’t happening. Not to mention I need to write and work on my blog. Of course my duties as a mother come first.
My life saver, I get my steps in most days. So even when the morning routine is a wash, it’s okay. At least that’s what I tell myself. It doesn’t always help.
There are many ways that I have chosen to express my love of self and things I do to take care of me. The easiest of them all is to curl up with a good book. What better way to relax and excercise your brain? I’ve been reading a lot more lately. Audio books help me read while I’m working on other things. I love it. Although, it kind of defeats the relax part of my idea.
Hot baths with fragrant oils and epson salts are a great way to relax as well as going to a spa for the day or a few hours.
Creating is also a way to wear part of me on the outside. My jewelry, denim skirts and crochet are perfect examples of such.
What I started last year was going to get a massage regularly. That really helped my body relax and get rid of unwanted tension. So I signed up for Massage Envy’s yearly membership. So worth it. I love the massage therapists they have there. She is so marvelous. When I leave I am walking on air.
My trip to Massage Envy is only once a month. I needed another way to take care of myself. Something more frequent. Funny thing is, I found that way outside of one of the grocery stores I shop at. Bayside Meditation has become a welcomed part of my life over the last few months.
Their technique for relaxing and letting go is definitely a blessing. Even if I go there burden by life a half an hour there helps me free myself from life’s worries. I don’t think many people pay attention to how much we hold on to or how much our burdens take there toll. Meditation has been a great help. I’ve learned how much my perception of life influences the way I react to things and how much it then becomes a part of me. I’ve been learning to let all of that go. I can’t really explain how much that has helped me live life and become more and more my true self. I’m also working on seeing things as they really are, not just my perception. It’s a process, and the work continues.
Stepping outside my box on this one. I hope it was helpful. If you want to explore some of the ways I take care of self check out my Pinterest. If you want to see what I’m up to during the week, check out my Instagram.
This Wednesday I’ll have movie reviews for you. I’m going to see Romeo Akbar Walter today and The Best of Enemies tomorrow. Make sure you check back.
I’m thinking of posing the next chapter of ‘The World of Dreamers next week, but there are a few other blogs I would like to do also. I have a few books I want to talk about. Plus I have done a journal update in a while. I haven’t make up my mind. Leave a comment and let me know what you think.
Until then, Peace & Love.