Have you ever picked up a book, started reading it and then realised it was the right book for you at that time?
It happened to me recently. I was feeling a bit sad or disappointed that my start-up wasn’t picking up as fast as I wanted it to be. And of course – I had high expectations for my progress.
I’ve purchased the book “The Three Questions: How to Discover and Master the Power Within You” (written by Don Miguel Ruiz and Barbara Emrys) about four months ago. And yet, only last week I’ve started reading it. For some reason, I felt compelled to start it now.
Just a few pages in and I got my AHA, the insight I was looking for.
“Too many of us were taught that love is conditional, that it comes with specific rules of engagement.”
When I’ve read that phrase I’ve realised that my self-love was conditional too. Somehow I’ve connected the meaning of value if I did something right. And only when I did something right, I would love myself.
Self-love is not based on what we are doing
So many of us live with this self-conditioning, linking our actions to our value, our self-care and even to self-love.
“If I earn X amount of money, I am of value, my life has value, I can then give myself some love.”
“If by the age of X I am in this job (either Manager or Director – or anything that sounds important to you), then I am worthy of self-love.”
These examples can go on forever, most of us have our own versions. We usually learn this type of thinking when we are growing up, as kids, either from our parents or from someone close to us.
Marshall Goldsmith has a wonderful quote “What got you here won’t get you there.” And I so agree with it. The same actions, beliefs, thoughts that were serving us up until this point in time might be the ones that could stop us from reaching the next phase in our lives (or careers).
As part of my Mental Resilience work (I am running workshops and circles on this topic), I wanted to share five tips to help you with your self-care routine.
5 Self-Care Tips
1. Become aware of yourself
The more you learn to observe your emotions, thoughts, beliefs, behaviours, triggers, the more aware you become of your patterns. You can then identify what is serving you and what is not. The best leaders that inspire us are the ones that are in touch with their emotions and have done a great deal of personal development and awareness.
2. Take time to rest
When your energy levels are depleted, it is hard to focus, to concentrate and to give our best in any situation (be it at work or in our relationships). So the best course of action when you feel tired, on the edge or restless, is to take some time out and rest (take a nap or a nice bath). Sometimes self-care means to just give yourself the time to relax.
3. Build a support system you can rely on
It is critical to have someone in our lives with whom to share our challenges, our pain, our struggles. Ideally, you would want to find a support group where you can feel safe to share what’s on your mind. It can also be a coach or a therapist, someone who has a non-judgemental attitude towards your situation and someone who can encourage you on your path.
4. Write a resilience remembering letter
Create your own letter to help you remember how resilient you are. You can use the one I’ve created for my clients as a guide when creating your own. Or use it as it is (write your name on both lines – as it is addressed to you, by you).
5. Think Less, Giggle More
Sometimes the best medicine for self-doubt or stress is laughter. Watch a good comedy or meet a friend who makes you laugh like crazy. And give yourself permission to have a day where all you do is have fun. We tend to take ourselves too seriously from time to time.
I hope these self-care tips will help you. Life can be hard and challenging, and yet, we are truly resilient. I believe in you! It’s now time for you to believe in yourself too!
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