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February 21, 2022
From healthier boundaries and saying 'no' to managing your time in the way that serves you and your needs. So many of us have been brought up to believe that we need to take care of everyone else first and foremost. It is the right thing to do and our own needs can come once everything (and everyone) else is sorted. In fact, this is often seen as a virtue and admired as being the ''kind', 'right' and 'self-less' thing to do.
Let us start by removing the harmful beliefs around self-love and clarify what it is not!
Selfish or Narcissistic This is such a harmful message and one that many of us grew up with. After all, how you expect to love anyone else, if you don't first of all love yourself?
Easy. It requires commitment to do uncomfortable things in order to make positive changes that will serve our best self in the long run.
Another task on your 'to do' list. Rather than being 'something else you need to do', it is really something that you realise will benefit you. It doesn't happen over night, but is a process of gradual changes and awareness of new ways of being, that benefit your overall wellbeing and lead to a happier way of living.
Self-love is a journey we take to honour ourselves by becoming aware of our needs and then prioritising them so that we are nurtured and feel loved and valued.
From our body, our mind, our spirit, and our emotions, we become aware of the different needs we have in each area to live a happy, balanced and joyful, healthy life.
Make no mistake - t's not always easy, in fact, it can be bloody hard to practice in reality. It can involve the following aspects;
Many of our daily habits such as saying 'yes', people-pleasing, binge watching Netflix, ignoring when our boundaries have been crossed ... often take us in the opposite direction of self-love. They can lead us to being over-stretched, exhausted, resentful, stressed and certainly not treating ourselves in a loving way.
Before we can begin to fill someone else’s cup,
it makes perfect sense that we first need to ensure our own is full.
The truth is, most of us do!
As women in particular, we have been programmed to please, to comply and to say 'yes' to everything and everyone. Putting everyone else first, all the time, is the opposite of self-love.
Below is a useful list to help you determine if you need to practice better self-love. These are signs that you need to focus more on self-love and less on pleasing others.
Do you ever find that;
If you answer 'yes' to a lot of these, then you are unlikely to be prioritising yourself or your needs and you could benefit from practicing better self-love.
One of the greatest gifts you can give yourself on your self-love journey is the remove the word 'should' from your vocabulary! It implies the need to do something differently or to do 'more' and really does not serve our wellbeing in any way. It is one of the main reasons we over-commit to begin with.
Using 'could' instead reminds you that you have a choice and you control the outcome. Your diary does not fill itself up, you do! The choice of what you agree to is always yours.
The first step is becoming aware of your needs, only then can you take the steps needed to honour and meet them.
Our needs vary from one person to another and are dependent upon a number of factors from your personality to your lifestyle, your likes and dislikes.
Learning to love yourself takes patience and effort initially, but the benefits you will feel and experience will be worth any time and effort.
1. Journal & discover your inner desires
Write out how you are feeling right now and what you would love to remove from your life. What would you like to add into you life?
2. Become aware of your inner voice
How is your inner dialogue? Is it harsh and critical or are you loving, kind and compassionate to yourself? If you need any help here, check out Louise Hay and her affirmations tutorials on YouTube
3. Do less
We all over-commit and it leads to huge levels of unnecessary stress in our lives as we try to reschedule or cancel. Allow more space in your diary for unexpected tasks or just to pause and regroup. Start to commit to less and enjoy this new sense of breathing space it allows you.
4. Rediscover what brings you joy
As children we spent hours playing, daydreaming, doodling, crafting. As adults we often forget the sheer joy these simple pleasures brought. Rediscover this joy by allowing yourself permission to tap into that creative spirit inside of you once again. What would you love to do if you had the time? Now, schedule time in your diary and book/ order whatever is needed to enjoy this pleasure.
5. Release the need to 'people-please'
We all do it! Even Oprah admitted she was 45 or 46 before she finally let go of the 'disease to please'. As a recovering 'people-pleaser' I can be honest and tell you it won't be easy. A lot of the discomfort comes from ourselves as we have operated in this way for so long that changing this habit involves pushing through discomfort.
But it does get easier and it is certainly worth it!
6. Say 'no' more.
You'll be amazed but the world won't stop spinning and you will enjoy huge benefits from this simple phrase. You can start with 'I can't do that, but maybe next time' or however you wish to phrase it, but ultimately the aim is to say 'no' to things that you just really don't want to do. Whether favours, chores, errands or extra work .... just be honest.
Take it little by little and each day, set aside that half-hour to look at your needs and start to plan ahead and put things in your diary that bring you joy or benefit your health and wellbeing.
Cover image by Anthony Tran on Unsplash
April 11, 2022
Despite our best efforts, stress is often a normal part of our everyday life. While it is something that most of us have simply learned to tolerate, it's impact on our physical and mental wellbeing is often far greater than we realise.
This guide offers 10 Tips to help move you from stress to de-stress and maintain a healthier, more balanced life that is better for you and those around you.
January 21, 2022
Self-care is any activity that we intentionally do in order to take care of ourselves! Simple as the really. Our health and wellbeing is made up of our mental, physical, emotional and even spiritual needs.
January 14, 2022
This month, our guest blog is by our lovely friend and London based yoga teacher, Lorna Fisher. An ex lawyer, Lorna is passionate about yoga and wellbeing and balance. A busy mum herself, she has also seen the many benefits of yoga practice for children and her teen workshops became very popular during the pandemic.