The beauty industry is very good at selling us superficial self worth. Let's be honest we all buy into it. Well, I certainly do. "Be kind to your skin." "Look after your nails." "Restore and energise your skin." Etc, etc. However if you look a little deeper, beyond the sales tactics, they do actually raise a good point. You ARE worth it! Yes, You! You're not just worth a new lipstick or whatever product they are flogging. Perhaps what they are really saying is, you are worth putting YOURSELF FIRST.
We are always told to be polite, politically correct, look out for others, put others first, give to those less fortunate and so on. While that is important and makes us decent human beings some of us have forgetten or simply just don't know how to put ourselves first. If you can be kind to your skin then how is it that you are not so kind to your inner self. How come you put everyone else before you. How is that your skin is worth love and attention but you're not?
I was guilty of putting others way ahead of myself and giving way too of much of myself. We have all been there I'm sure. So how do you learn to be kind to your whole self and not just your skin?
Being kind to yourself means doing what is best for you and promoting yourself to the #1 spot in your life.
Do You Know Your Boundaries?
Are there people in your life who push your buttons? Know how to get in under your skin? Are there people in your life who constantly cancel or change arrangements just to suit themselves? Do you put up with it because it's just easier? Are you often disappointed?
How does that make you feel? Does it make you feel special or feel valued? I am hoping that it seriously does not. I'm pretty sure it makes you mad, frustrated, feeling let down and perhaps even a little used.
So what do you do? Where do you draw the line? Where do you come in this picture?
Setting boundaries is teaching others how you wish to be treated. If you let people treat you like a doormat, you will be a doormat. It's about letting people know your limits, your expectations and what you will absolutely not put up with.
So how would you deal with any of the above scenarios? What would you say or do? How would you feel? What is acceptable behaviour to you in this situation? Has there ever been a time when you were in a similar situation, what would you differently?
Know your value and that you matter. Setting clear boundaries is not about being rude, stubborn or inconsiderate to others. It's about being kind and loving towards yourself. Valuing yourself and your time.
Lost in Time:
Learning to be your own priority may at times mean saying no to others. Being brave enough to say you need some alone time. It can be hard to admit that you just want time out to recharge your batteries. If your best friend told you he/she was going for a walk because they need space you wouldn't think ill of them would you? You would say fair enough and wish them a nice time. Remind them to bring a jacket!
We are all busy, We can't possibly always be in top form. We all need to recharge in our own unique way.
How do you like to recharge?
Do you know when your happiest?
What makes you lose time and hours just fly by?
That is when you are your most authentic self. Being at one with yourself and not distracted by life. You are completely in the moment and truly being YOU.
Being recharged and rested in your own self has huge benefits for all those around you too. You feel brand new, calm, have more energy and hopefully you are better equipped to face the demands placed on you by life. So by saying no to others, even if it's just for 10 minutes you are teaching them the value you place on yourself. They will learn to leave you alone for those few moments. They will know when your "do not disturb" light is on!
What shakes your snow globe!?
How can you switch off? With so many pamper packages, classes, hobbies, sports, arts and crafts out there how do you know what you really like?
Think back to when you were a child. What did you really enjoy?
Not everyone is outdoorsey, it's not about being active unless you want it to be. It's about spending quality with yourself. That might mean taking yourself out for a meal or going shopping. Getting pampered in some way. Having time to yourself to indulge in social media or reading the latest Hello! Magazine. Feeding the ducks in the park. It's about doing something nice for you. It's treating yourself how you want others to treat you. It's about knowing that you matter and that you too are entitled to down time. I love going to the cinema. I can't be disturbed for 2 hours. I can't play with my phone. I get lost in the story and I can relax into really big comfy seats.
What do you love to do for escapism?
You just have to realise that you're worth time and know that you deserve it. You make time for everyone else so make time for yourself. When other people see you valuing yourself they will value you more. We teach others how to treat us, so make sure you are getting what you're worth.
Best Advice I Ever Got
I was recently told by a very dear friend:
"Only ever give 95% of yourself to someone else. You must always keep 5% for yourself. It's your reserve gold account!"
When I thought about it I was flabbergasted. I gave all of myself away before, to my own detriment of course. People will take, take, take if you let them. We all know the saying about giving an inch and been taken for a mile.
If someone keeps messing you around/ not considering your needs, ask yourself who is responsible for that? Change how people treat you by changing how you treat yourself.
So turn the tables. Tap into your gold reserve. Get back your 5% now. In fact why not take 7% or 8% if you can. It's not about being ruthless or stubborn. It's about making yourself the number 1 priority in your life.
Its knowing your worth, then adding tax and a service charge!
If you need some help with setting more time aside for yourself or setting boundaries how about a Personal Development Coaching Session? In strictest confidentiality, no matter what your block or issue together we will find a way forward.
About the Author:
Sinéad Kennedy is a Physical Therapist, Yoga Siromani and Pilates Instructor. She has recently qualified as a Personal Development Coach. Based in both Rathfarnham and Dundrum, South County Dublin. She treats and teaches people from all walks of life, including many athletes, especially cyclists, runners and golfers. Recently featured in the Irish Independent, FIT Magazine, her Yoga 4 Cyclists class has gained notoriety.
A keen cyclist and proud member of Orwell Wheelers she has completed numerous cycling events including Les Cingles du Mont Ventoux & La Marmotte Sportive. She is an accomplished audax-er having done numerous 200km and 300km routes. Sinéad has also completed three Dublin City Marathons, numerous Adventure Races and Half Marathons.
Keen to spread the word on all things related to Wellness, Fitness, Coaching and Travel.