27. Putting yourself first


A close friend of mine and I often talk about how women always put others first in their lives and they then become a last priority. Also, how women’s self identity often lies with others: I am a mother, a wife, a daughter and never a broader sense of what they really are like. This was made only too real for me in recent weeks when a friend of mine was rushed to hospital seemingly suffering from stress-related issues that then became physical. This scared me and drove home the idea of self-love.

How do I take care of myself?

I will start by being honest to say that I don’t always put myself and that when I don’t it does make me feel not so great. This is what I rather try and do instead:

  1. Exercise. It helps me to burn that anxious energy but it also forces me to be in the moment and to enjoy or even breath through the pain and after, I am more relaxed and more capable to deal with whatever the issue was.
  2. Prayer & journaling. Writing and praying also helps to start my day on a positive note, it helps me commit my actions to God and to trust that it will be well. I make a lot of lists and more often than not, they are useful because I don’t lose my mind.
  3. Evaluate priorities. I find if you keep doing stuff, people keep expecting you to continue with it and rarely will they report back and ask that you stop. So it’s up to you to really stop, step back and determine whether this activity is still as helpful for you. Same thing with money. Do you need to keep spending all that money? Does that debit order still make sense for you?
  4. NO GUILT. A part of me knows that I cannot do everything and that I cannot be everything to all people but sometimes I finish that sentence with, but watch me try. And when it doesn’t work out, guilt is an easy second feeling and I have to say to myself, no more! None of that around here.
  5. Sampling magazines and books at Exclusive Books. Particularly on a quiet evening when it is not too busy. Every so often, that’s my plan for the evening and boy do I look forward to it.
  6. Catching up with a friend whether via email or WhatsApp. So enriching and often empowering.
  7. Listening to Music. Whether an oldie or a new album. Something about music just makes me so happy.
  8. Tea. Because tea …

A couple of other interesting readings with a more conclusive list of things to start doing today to do better for yourself:

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