Self-care is a way of being. A care “TAKER” in this article is someone who:
- Takes time for spiritual reflection
- Takes time for journaling
- Takes time for his or her self each day to find peace and joy
- Takes time in their calendar for eating sitting down at a table with family and friends
- Takes time to cook or prepare healthy food
- Takes times for physical activity
- Takes time for rest and sleep
- Takes times….takes time….takes time, for self
How often do you end a conversation with someone to hear them say to you, “ you take care.” Yet you never hear it as an opportunity to receive and offer care to self.
The lack of self-care can be a slow death but death, no doubt. I ask you these questions, how often do you use the words SELF AND CARE SIDE BY SIDE in the same sentence? Are your thoughts and speaking more aligned with, “ I will get to myself later, after I care for…” and your “care for” list is really long?
If you were to make a list today of all the people you care for (not care about) where would YOU fall on the list? Also, have you noticed that it really doesn’t make any difference how much people tell you, “If you don’t take care of yourself you can’t take care of others“? You still aren’t taking actions for your own self-care.
The big care for other jobs come and go in life…it’s the everyday care that we all do that we seldom recognize as the biggest job of all. I used to think that we women were the ones that suffered the most on the lack of self-care, yet as I observe men more seriously on this behavior, I see it with them as well. Lack of self-care is not gender specific. It is a way of being.
As I inquire further into this conversation I see that it is become more and more of an epidemic, and as I have spent the last year rediscovering myself through self love, self respect, and self-care I have come to see what works and what doesn’t work as an approach to change in my own life.
I Share These Discoveries with YOU, So That You May Begin the Journey of Self-care.
Back in December I wrote about the discoveries I had regarding my own lack of self-care. I also promised at that time that I intended to share more of my own discoveries and my triumphs on this subject. In addition, I plan to provide you with some processes that will help you find the inner source of your lack of self-care.
My articles and blogs on this topic will be numbered because there is a sequence to each writing.
The work that I have done and will continue to do with myself in my personal journey to Care “Taker” – Self Care as a way of being…has been many years in the making. I plan a short cut for you through sharing my experiences throughout my journey. Of course you will have your journey and you will unfold into discovery at your own pace; however I feel that sharing my learning with you will open the door for your journey to self-care become shorter than mine.
It is important for you to follow the lessons in sequence. As I address individual issues and moments in time, they all may appear to be separate things. But now after all these years I see them as building blocks that have brought me to the discoveries necessary to make the changes for self-care effortlessly. It is no longer about throwing myself into “quick fixes” only to return to the same place again.
Care “Taker” – Self-Care Lesson #1
Self-care can’t be approached as a quick fix for an isolated condition. I used to approach what I through was being overweight as the cause for not taking care of myself. That if I lost weight then I would have handled self-care. As a teen I was overweight. I was active in basketball in school and I was considered to be a “solid” body type, whatever that meant! All I knew was it seemed to me the other girls all had shapely figures and I was more boxy built. I can remember one of my brothers telling me I looked like a wiener tied in the middle. You now how that would look, well, certainly no hourglass figure for me.
You would think this was the place in time that it all started for me…”he did say that and my life was marked from then on!” Yes, I can tell you if I have heard those words in my head once I have heard them a million times. I want to tell you this; I did feel a terrible sinking feeling in my heart when he said that to me. BUT, what he said had NOTHING to do with my body self-image issue that I have spent my entire life trying to OVERCOME. This self-determined self-image was only isolated to my body weight. I have never had a poor self-image about myself other than my weight.
I live in what I call a state of inquiry. It is a part of the work that I teach others and I live it myself. So what does it mean to be in a state of inquiry? For me it means that I don’t take every answer and reason I give myself for why something is the way it is…as the final answer. I ask myself the deeper questions until I reach a place of “new awareness.” Until I get to the AH-HA moments that shift my reality.
I have always known that what my brother said to me was nothing more than a reflection of my own belief about myself. Painful as it may have seemed in the moment, the pain was actually a result of my own creations…long before he ever said what he said. My brother only provided evidence to what I had already made up about myself.
This takes to the meat of Lesson #1.
It is clearly your own making… the way you see yourself. Your circumstances in life do not cause you to be the way you are, and they have never created your self-image. If you choose to hang on to the belief that the circumstances have been your cause then you will forever be victim to your circumstances and continue on the path of self-destruction.
In my inquiry I have revealed the source of my beliefs as it pertains to my body. It is important to know that your beliefs are not the problem. The problem is the source of your beliefs. The beliefs are changeable. However, you can’t just “overcome your beliefs.” Your beliefs have a source, a burning ember that keeps them alive…that no matter how much you try to affirm on top of your beliefs and try to make them go away and get new ones…they seem to eventually trickle back and the patterns start all over again.
I tried really hard to make myself believe I could be small and I could lose the weight. Then the diets began….and stopped and began again, and stopped….a frantic pattern that just repeated over and over. Then I tried all the “no more diets”…diets don’t work and that is accurate. Diets DO NOT WORK for lifestyle change. But then the new “eat healthy” programs didn’t work either. They too were the yo-yo effect.
The issue wasn’t the weight…it’s who I saw myself to be. I am exactly who I have always seen myself to be. This is true in every aspect of self-belief and image. I was living absolutely consistently with how I could see myself. I saw myself as a fat person and that was exactly what I created myself to be. I could hate every moment of it and it would only drive me to more and more evidence. I had NO CHOICE…but to become exactly how I saw myself. And the interesting thing is I saw myself as this fat person from the time I was a little bitty girl. I mean very young. It wasn’t caused by anyone but me. Here is the process…
1. As a child, I saw myself as a fat person. (In these years I was never told I was fat…this vision of self was my entire making).
2. My vision of self was the fat person.
3. My life was always about comparing me to others …they are not fat…they are fatter than me.
4. My thoughts were preoccupied with the fat, when I thought about myself, when I bought cloths, when I looked in the mirror, when I saw beautiful tiny girls, teens, women, when I ate, when I didn’t exercise, when I did exercise, when the boys passed me up for the girls that were slim…there was never a time I was free of the haunting thoughts…LITTLE DID I KNOW these thoughts were creating my body out ahead of me.
5. Each year brought forth more and more evidence of being fatter and fatter. And each year added more weight to tackle.
6. Then chronic illness followed.
7. Less and less self-care…
Where do I go with these self-discoveries and acknowledgment of my responsibility in the matter?
1. Willingness – means to stop resisting what is so. I am fat because I created fat…and for no other reason whatsoever.
2. Stop trying to make it go away. This does not mean resignation. It means owning the truth.
3. Go to the source of the current day reality and give it permission to be the truth. This permission is a MUST. Otherwise, you are living in resistance and resistance will only keep you hostage.
Let’s Start Your Self-Care Journey Now…
Self-Care Step 1. Find your number one area of self-destruction. Mine was my weight. As you head into true self-care you will find many but find the one that is of utmost importance today.
Step 2. Release all people and circumstances as being the cause of your self-destruction. This will be your biggest step ever to freedom for self-care.
Step 3. Find the vision you created about yourself that has been the air, water, and food for the pattern. Mine was the vision of myself as a little bitty fat baby girl. That was when I said, “I am fat.” And this vision has always been in my mind’s eye. It became my internal vision board, or what I call my LIVING VISION BOARD.
In closing, imagine this…
You started as a very young person creating this vision of yourself. And from that vision you see yourself. You can only see yourself through this vision. You have created a LIVING VISION BOARD for yourself…and you are living every moment of it.
Ever wonder why your “created vision board” that hangs on your wall…yields some things in your life but not everything you have on your board? It’s because your LIVING VISION BOARD has greater power. It is fed by the source of your belief system and is also reinforced by your multitudes of beliefs that follow. It creates exactly how you see life and all your beliefs and energy are far more powerful than any vision board you can have outside of yourself…and hang on your wall.
Stay with me through this journey, and we will discover your Living Vision Board and recreate it into Living Self-Care.
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Belanie signing off with… Your Possibilities Are Soon To Become Realities!