I wanted to talk today about how important it is to treat yourself with the love and compassion that you give to other people, and that you wish you could receive from others. I have come to realise from my own personal journey of learning that I have been so tough on myself. Expecting myself to constantly be able to give to others, to support them through their times of grief, stress, joy or whatever is going on for them.
But when it’s my turn to go through these things, I somehow start to think I should be able to deal with this, Why am I feeling angry? When will I feel ok again? Why didn’t I get that? How will this situation work out? Or, and I’m pretty sure you’re all familiar with this one – when you’ve spent an hour two or maybe even a whole day just having fun or wasting time watching TV or reading a good book and then you feel guilty for not having achieved anything that day. Sound familiar? I thought so.
I wanted to write about my new mantra that came to me from my Journey work with Ann Winslow.
This is a form of healing work devised my Brandon Bays. Those of you who are interested might like to read her book, The Journey.
I met my two-year old self in this journey, and realised how lonely and neglected she’d been feeling. So I took her up in my arms and gave her the biggest hug possible, and I felt a huge release. When I gave her the hug, I felt the hug within me. That’s when I realised that I hadn’t been giving myself enough love. I’ve been allowing myself to be a critical parent for too long, even though I thought I’d been treating myself with more love than I used to. This is a trap that is easy for us all to fill into.
I also realised through this session that I kept returning to fear during the meditation. I worried that I wouldn’t be able to see or really believe the journey I was being guided on, or that it wasn’t ok what I was seeing, because I was supposed to be seeing something else – the right answer. Or that I wouldn’t see anything at all and that the session would have been a complete waste of money. But I was surrounded by so much love that I noticed a new habit-forming. A voice inside kept telling me to slow down, relax, and let go. Accept whatever I saw and share it with Ann. It was ok to just see what I was seeing, or not see anything at all. And when I couldn’t see anything, Ann shared with me that this was common – sometimes that angels only want to share so much with you. The rest is for later.
So this is how I came across my new mantra for life. Stop! Slow down. Easy.
This is about meeting yourself where you are. Whether that’s excitement, joy, love, fear. Take a moment now to check in. Check in with each area of your body. How does it feel? Is there pain anywhere?
Treat yourself as you would treat a young vulnerable child. Speak to whatever part of your body that speaks to you. Say “I love you, I hear you. I thank you for everything you do for me, but I am in control now. You can relax and let go because I am in charge of this situation.”
Give yourself a big hug. Speak gently to yourself. Then do something that brings you back to your place of joy and happiness.
Write a list of 100 things that bring you joy. That help you to lose yourself in the moment and just be. These can be places, fabrics, colours, tastes. Some of them you will need to do when you are alone in your personal space. You might find however, that there are some that you can do when you are out in public but need to build your strength and joy back when you have lost yourself for a while.
One of my favourite things to do after I have come back to myself is imagine myself surrounded in a cloak of light of my favourite colour – or whatever colour my mind’s eye brings to me at the time. This is something I use at work on a regular basis. It helps to bring me back to my true self.
If you notice that there is some murky feeling all of a sudden, if you’re too tired to work and you feel foggy headed and grumpy, take a deep breath. Check in with each and every part of your body. Don’t fight what you are feeling. You’re feelings are there for a reason. They are probably telling you that some good quality self-care is needed, or some work on your priorities and projects. Accept it. Ok, so I’m feeling tired/grumpy/foggy headed/silly. That’s ok – it’s allowed. Send whatever you are feeling love. It might help to use some form of image. Like a golden light of a syrupy texture, or a light pink, sparkly light that slowly travels around your body to where it is needed.
Notice if anything starts to feel different. Once you have started to accept yourself as you are, where you are, then things will start to change for you anyway. You will be present to yourself and aware if things need to change, and what steps you need to take to bring about this change, or even that you are feeling wonderful, and that it’s a good idea to take a minute and fully embrace this wonderful feeling.
Please take note however, part of accepting yourself where you are is recognising and accepting that you might need a bit of help. We are social creatures and if these tips don’t seem to be helping, you might need some extra support, like talking to a trusted friend, a counsellor or even your doctor. I have probably said this many times but I don’t see any reason why spirituality and self-care can’t be used alongside science and western medicine. The two can work well together.
Especially if you are going through or have been through a fresh trauma or a recently bereaved.
Seeking help is a form of self-care and being your own best friend too.
This is truly the path to becoming you’re own best friend. You’re relationship with yourself is the one that you will be in for the longest time – isn’t worth giving it 100% , 5*treatment?
Those of you who would be interested in a session with Anne can find her at:
Love and Angel Blessings,
Lucy Loizou xxx