Self-love your way to happiness

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In honor of the LOVE month, ask yourself when the last time you practiced self-love was. Can you recall when you most recently did something to make yourself happy—to illustrate your love for self? This will, no doubt, look unique for each one of us. A weekly afternoon cat nap might be your go-to happy place, while mine, on most days, is found in the yoga hot room, or sprawled on the sofa lost in a fantasy world of fiction. I used to think self-love was a selfish endeavor—that my own happiness was secondary. Self-love even begins with the prefix of the word selfish. My own Christian beliefs advise against doing anything out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but to humbly consider others better than ourselves. However, I think if we fail to practice self-love, we have little love to share with others. But, when we are happy and feel loved, it is so much easier to sparkle brightly.

How will you practice self-love today?

[Image courtesy of TeddyBear[Picnic] at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.]

I’m over it

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I'm over it

We’re almost one month into the new year already and it’s been a big fat bust so far. First, in my quest for balance, I jumped in feet first and overextended and overcommitted myself (see #12 in Confessions of a fraud), and second, my immune system suffered because of it. Not only did I miss several days, I flaked out on multiple commitments. It seems that with everything I want to do and yes, even need to do, it’s easy for me to become overwhelmed and deplete my reserves. Yet, when this happens, I am crabby and zero good to others. I cannot expect to run on autopilot with no respect for my energy levels. So how do I find balance? I need to ask myself: What drains me and what feeds me?—then eliminate the one and do more of the other—because if I don’t start practicing self-love on a consistent basis, my sparkle might begin to dull with time.

When is enough, enough for you?

[Image credit: David Castillo Dominici, FreeDigitalPhotos.net]

Navigating a new normal

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Navigating a new normal

[Image credit: digitalart]

Since my last post, I’ve been muddling through most days in a film of malaise. My beloved father passed away mere weeks ago. I vacillate between feelings of abandonment and guilt, relief and hope. But often I stumble around life in ill-fitting emotions I’d prefer to shed. Yet I attempt to find my new normal among the living. I’ve been told to be gentle and kind as I navigate this unforgiving territory; to learn to say no and to accept myself wherever I’m at … that I’ll reach a point where I’m angry enough at my depressive state I’ll finally be ready to move forward. Some days are better than others. Some I wish I could turn back the clock and see my pop one more time on this side of heaven. My last post shared The meaning of life according to Gast—about truly living. Now I simply long for my sparkle to return—spark by small spark.

How are you gentle to yourself in times of loss?

Sustaining the sparkle

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Sparkle

 

As I wrote about in Sparkling affirmations, if we’re alive, we’re going to get knocked down. Maybe not daily, but it will happen. However, we cannot allow another person or circumstance the power to keep us there. During a recent yoga practice, the teacher shared her personal testimony of an unpleasant situation she’d taken to heart, but then acknowledged she doesn’t always act the way she should or speak with kindness. So before she let the unpleasantries ruin her day, she released the damaging energy. Imagine if she had held onto it, how that may have affected her evening or the next class she taught. Just as we are in control of our own happiness, we choose how we react to positive or negative situations. I appreciated the reminder because, lately, I’ve been fixating on and allowing the littlest of items to get under my skin, ultimately dulling my sparkle. Thus taking away from the things—and people—which matter most.

What’s your secret to sustaining the sparkle?

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