Let’s talk about self-love today! It’s been a while that I have been MIA from my blog. The last couple of months have exciting, thrilling, painful, interesting and then some. I have heard and read that a lot of writers drive from their pain or difficulties in their lives. They write better and probably that’s true. While I can’t write when everything this going on but whenever dust settles I feel the wave of writing coming and then either comes a story or my blog. In the past couple of months, I have neglected my blog and myself a lot. Mainly because all my energy and free time were going in planning, executing and adjusting to our second biggest move, third biggest life change and escaping the tumbleweed of changes coming our way. I felt I was losing myself. This blog is a reminder “Don’t Lose Yourself Mama, You Matter!”
We moved to Toronto from New Jersey! Everything happened so fast. When you have settled down in a country, which you aspire to be your home, and then you have to just up and leave! Trust me it’s not easy and with a two-year-old everything is difficult twice over. Today, I want to talk about mental peace. Calm in the middle of chaos. How a mom, when she is expected to hold everyone and everything together in the family, loses herself. She can see herself slipping away in the process of building a life. I will be “selfish” and say it out loud. If you want to have a happy family, you have to be happy. Women are nurturers, that’s how God has created us. But even tree takes in water and sunlight to grow, isn’t it? So, it is very important we find our peace. Find what makes us happy. I am not talking about buying two hundred dollar bag, being happy for a minute and then going back to the same mental state again. I am talking about feeling abundant enough. Feeling you are enough. Having confidence that you are giving your best. Setting positive intentions and living them.
Journey to Self-Love
People say one should not put all their eggs in basket financially, I have started to believe it is true emotionally as well. We have a community, which comprises of friends, family, colleagues, and new people, who we constantly meet. All these people are important. It’s important you have your support system but don’t ignore your inner world at the same time. So here are a few things I am trying to do. I am nowhere close to my journey of self-love but as they say the first step is the hardest and I have taken that.
I reconnected with my friends even though they are far off, in different countries and cities. I have been so busy with everything in life, I was neglecting how important my friendships are to me. I didn’t want to bother my friends, I didn’t want to share my problems. I just wanted to “fix” everything on my own. I had forgotten, just a casual chat with your friends can cheer you up or remind you to come back to life or shut the fuck up or stop whining, so and so forth. Your friends can tell you stuff you don’t want to say to yourself. They can take you out of your misery by showing you are overthinking. Or you will just be distracted listening to their shit, lol. I was surprised while I was trying to keep my friends away from my trouble, they were missing me too. My girls have always been my biggest strength. They were suffering and I was suffering but we weren’t sharing. Things got instantly better when we starting sharing. Friends, friends, friends were the first step to my self-healing.
I started reading. I re-read books, which I have loved in the past. I just wanted their comfort. I wanted a good book to hug me and take me away from my mind and its endless gibberish. I wanted to know the end of those books and reminisce about the comfort they provide me. Though it is difficult to complete a book in two days now, even if I can bring in three or four pages in a day I felt good. Like I did something that is important to me.
Hobby: Mine is Coloring
Colouring is my most favorite hobby. I have always sucked at sketching or drawing but in mind, I see myself as Picasso. lol. Just the thought of coloring, losing myself in the world of colors and coloring my heart on those inked sheets have been a sort of meditation. Though I should start actual meditation as well (I am trying and it is harder to get back to it). I will get there but for now, just coloring and completing that one piece of drawing is deeply satisfying. People say creating or doing something with your hand is an amazing feeling, they are not lying.
No to Multi-Tasking
Stop taking too much on my plate. Stopped doing so many things at the same time and stopped Netflix! Yep, you read it right. The wave of binge is such, it makes your mind numb. In your mind, you are doing something to unwind but in reality, you are just adding more screen time in your life, which adds to all the stress. I am trying each day to live more mindfully, do things that stimulate my mind and keeps me excited. It keeps me going, instead of living just one day to another from episode to Netflix show in the background, I try to watch whatever I like for an hour and really watch it. You won’t believe the number of things you can do when you are not distracted with all the noise in the background. Multi-tasking is a myth. We don’t have to do everything in one go! Priortise and do one thing at a time. Do it mindfully!
This continues to be one of the biggest challenges for me but I am determined to do it! Even though I was a stay at home (just went back to work), I was there with Aurav and Sparky but I wasn’t spending time with them. I wasn’t doing it mindfully. When there are so many changes happening in life it feels your life is caught in water current and you just try to go with the flow. But a little planning can help you go a long way. I was getting frustrated on how to keep an eager mind of my two and a half-year-old son engaged. More I was caught up in my mind, more difficult it was getting for me to teach him new things, engage him in positive activities, and good behavior. On my journey to being more self-aware I starting making a mental note on how I would like my next day to be. What activities I want to do, which toys I want to bring out on rotation, where I want to take Sparky for a walk, and other little details. I have started imagining how I want my day to look. If I want to call a friend on the walk or just listen to music or just quietly walk with sparky. I guess I am trying to see where I am going and doing it mindfully instead of mindlessly moving from one chore to another. It is indeed one of the hardest thing I am doing and each day isn’t the same but I am not giving up. You don’t give up!
I am someone who loves working out. I have never shied away from the hard work. I know what it takes to get healthy but last two years, I have looked at myself in the mirror, made a note to myself that I will soon start exercising, and immediately forget all about it. Physical and mental health is linked. It’s not about getting a bikini body, I have always loved my curves. It’s just about doing something for myself. Doing something which only affects me and is for me. This is another change that has been exceptionally hard because the only time I can manage with the whole household is early in the morning. Like many of us, I am not a morning person but now I love waking up an hour before everyone else. It has become my morning ritual to get ready for the day. Run, walk, play, dance, do anything but don’t stop!
Prioritize Emotional Well-Being
I have consciously started prioritizing who or what can or should make me happy or sad. A lot of times we end up spending energy on situations that are either out of our control or are a result of our overthinking mind. I have started walking away from situations that don’t have a long-lasting impact on my life. Again, this is something that is a constant struggle but then journey to self-love is not easy. When you are caught in the moment it’s really hard to distance yourself with your emotions, especially negative ones. But just do it. Walk away once and the second time will be easier. You will realize a lot of times your reaction is a reflection of your mental state. Accepting what is your priority and not reacting to every little hurdle in our lives is important. Don’t lose yourself in the battle against the mind. Celebrate little wins and if you succumb to some situations on the way, let it go and start afresh.
My Happiness, My Responsibility
The Last couple of months were a series of changes, which I know is good for me and my family in long run but when you are in transition, everything is a blur and you are just trying to get by from one day to another, and stress becomes a constant. All I could see was stress around me. I would blame everything and everyone. My anger, frustration, and sadness was someone else’s fault and no one was doing anything to make it better. I would hardly talk to my friends but whenever I did all I wanted to do was complain and wanted them to make me feel better. Until one day I realized who would want to live with a person who is always complaining. I know I won’t! Secondly, It’s my job to show my son how to be happy or keep a positive mindset during difficult times? What am I doing? At that moment I knew I can’t run on empty anymore. I can’t depend on others irrespective of how close they are to me for my happiness. I won’t say I am happy and enlightened but I feel good about the fact that I am trying!
When I started working on my happiness, I took a tour down the memory road and thought to myself which was the happiest phase of my adult life and what was helping me to be happy. It was the time when I was doing good work, traveling all over, in great shape, and so connected with my god. I don’t believe in religion, never have but I do believe in god and doing good. I believe in helping others when I can. I believe! In the last couple of years, I have been so clouded with all the things which were not working out for me, all the negative thoughts and anger, that I simply forgot to believe. My god lives in me. I have to remind myself to look inside every day. Find god, find your lost connection, and remember you are loved by the one who matters the most. See god in little things, little miracles. Frankly, this epiphany is the reason I am even writing again.
Don’t Feel Guilty About Loving Yourself!
Oh! The guilt of not doing the right thing or not doing enough is exhausting and it drains you of whatever little light is left inside you. All our lives people from all walks of life have told us when we are wrong or we are not enough or we don’t do things right, so on and so forth! We are so busy living up to everyone’s expectations that we forget who we are! How to love ourselves and how to be gentle to ourselves! Just thinking about all those harsh words or emotions I feel like crying but then it’s time to wipe your eyes, clear your throat, look yourself in the mirror, and tell yourself that you matter! Love yourself unconditionally! Love yourself the way you love your child or your parents or your partner. Love yourself even when you don’t like yourself. Be gentle to yourself when you fail. Respect your effort and struggle! Love and respect yourself! Period!
All in all, I am trying and trying hard, not to forget myself. Not to lose myself. I am constantly trying to work on my inner strength. It is not easy. But I am trying! Anyone who is reading it and relates to it should know you are not alone, we are not alone. Let’s take comfort in each other and be happy. Truly, simply happy! Let’s not run on empty, let’s not lose ourselves! We matter!
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