Sometimes I come at life from the wrong angle, especially when it comes to taking care of myself, and I’m sure many of you can relate! This is partly why exercising regularly, for example, is difficult for me. Instead of thinking “I love and respect my body enough to take care of it” and viewing exercise as a way to love myself, I think “I had better get out there and run or I’m a failure at life.” Like I said, the wrong angle. And I have to remind myself of this often.
So! Reminding myself and you, here are some ways to love yourself, respect yourself, and treat yourself well. We’re worth it. ❤ ❤ ❤
- drink more water! the cells in your bod will thank you.
- exercise more! but make it fun (dancing, playing a sport). endorphins = yay.
- eat well! love yourself enough to only put good things into your body, not low-key poison (MSG, anyone).
- connect with nature! give your cells some vit-D, give your lungs some fresh air, and remind yourself that you’re a human being with a soul, not a robot. be outside and listen to the trees and the wind and the birds.
- do fun things for the sake of them! not everything has to have a point. color because you like coloring. bake because you like baking. garden because you like gardening.
- know your self-care things! maybe it’s sitting down for half an hour with herbal tea and a magazine. maybe it’s knitting. maybe it’s making soap. it doesn’t really matter what it is-just figure it out and then do it daily. you deserve to be taken care of, and who better to take care of you than you?
- get more/better sleep! there are several things you can do to improve your sleep quality, and beyond that, make sure you’re sleeping enough. don’t skimp on sleep for anything. the rule of thumb is, the more stressed and busy you are, the more important sleep becomes.
- eliminate the bad stuff! take a look at who you spend the most time with, and what you spend the most time reading or thinking about. I’m not saying be in denial, I’m just saying that you’re no one’s trash can. don’t allow yourself to be one. you. deserve. more.
Do you have any other self-love or self-care tips?
A world of words inside my soul; how can I explain it? All the words I know can’t come close, all the pretty prose and turns of phrase are useless.
Can you translate the whispers of the deep into spoken words? Can any amount of music or painting come close to revealing true beauty? Can the glory of the sun compare to the essence behind the sun, to the lifeblood which gives it its glory? Can a foggy mirror produce the same clarity as the thing it reflects? Does the moon shine as brightly as the sun, whose light she mirrors? Sing, my soul, and speak, my mouth, although all falls short of God, although all falls short of the depth of feeling. Though I fall short, still I give my all.
Hello my lovely and beautifully loyal readers. I know I’ve been absent for a while, but things have been happening at the speed of light! Most importantly, I married the love of my life, so you know, that was nice.
In other news, however, you will (hopefully) be glad to know that I’m officially back. Blogs will roll, I say! Ahem. In any case, I happen to have started publishing my books, finally. I’m excited! One of them is already out under the pen name Helen Rose, but I will in fact be publishing the first of the Shard-related books later this month under my own name. I’m incredibly excited to finally be able to share these with you, and a lot of you have been there with me since the beginning as I worked on and slaved over them. So thank you for your continued and awesome support, and stay tuned for Pirates, book one in the Shard trilogy! (Super sneaky sneak peek at the covers up above there for you.)
We forget so quickly that we’re human. We want to be machines who can smoothly and efficiently get up early, work, clean, and go to sleep again. Like robots. Like clocks, just ticking away the time. We forget that we have beating hearts and rushing blood and souls that need desperately to breathe. It goes against the way the world works to take time to be still and calm. To take time to rest. To take time to breathe life back into yourself, and more importantly, to have Life breathed back into you by the One who made us the way we are.
When you’re busy and tired – breathe. When you feel like you just can’t anymore – breathe. When you feel lost and confused and overwhelmed – breathe. Do the thing that makes no sense. That is what it means to love yourself, and if you can’t love yourself, you’re not going to be able to really love other people. The whole “love your neighbor as yourself” thing is a coin with two sides, and we like to ignore the second part.
So today, breathe. Just breathe.
I am not a trash can for your past.
It has been such a long time since I’ve felt like myself. Since I’ve given my soul the space to be who it really is. Since I’ve set boundaries in place so that no one else but God can influence the core of my identity. I let other things come in and take little pieces of me – chip them away and carry them off like thieves. But no more. I am Awake. And I am free. Nothing can tame me, because I stand on the solid rock that is Christ. To people who don’t believe in Him, I’m sure this sounds silly. I’m sure you’re embarrassed for me. But that no longer matters.
I’ve always tried to give the people in my life the benefit of the doubt. I’m not put off by differences or quirks. I like to celebrate who people are and I appreciate the differences and the huge variety in personalities and beliefs that my circle of friends contains. I truly love and appreciate the people who are in my life, even when I disagree with them. Can you do the same for me?
Sometimes I hide what I believe because I feel I have to make up for the bad experiences people have had with Christians. But you know what? If you walk around pinning all of your baggage with Christianity on the people around you, that’s something you need to work through. If your first reflex when speaking to me after you hear that I’m a Christian is to only take what I say half seriously, that’s something you need to think about. I’m not trying to undermine the hurt some have experienced in church or at the hands of Christians. I recognize it and I know it’s a problem. But:
I am not a trash can for your past.
And I can’t keep quiet about this very big and important part of my life, because it is exactly that. Whatever you might believe about the truth or lie of the Bible, God is the reason why I’m still here. He’s the reason why I’m free. He’s the reason why I have the courage to get up in the mornings and face the day. He is the breath in my lungs. He is the lava in my lamp. He is the coffee smell in my coffee. Basically, I love Him. And I shouldn’t have to apologize for that, or justify it, to the people who call themselves my friends – just like I don’t expect my friends to apologize or justify to me why they are who they are.
I lost myself when I started to try and hide Him away. I hate admitting that I even did that, because it breaks my heart to imagine how that must have hurt Him. But this is Attempting Authenticity, and here is where you’ll find raw truth. And there will be no more hiding. I am free.
Photo cred: Debbie Orolowitz.