We have all heard it a million times. We all know we need it, but why is self love so hard for us women to achieve? As Valentine’s Day is approaching, we naturally want to go all out and express our love and gratitude to our loved ones, spouses, children, and even our fur babies. Yet, we forget to acknowledge our own hard work and show love and appreciation for all we do day in and day out. We hustle, we grind to make sure our family’s needs are met, leaving little to nothing for ourselves at the end of the day. I don’t think I’ve gotten my nails done in months! I’ve reapplied nail polish at least twice in the last several weeks to hide the chips, and my hair hasn’t been washed since last Thursday… If we are going to be filling everyone else’s cups, then we need to start making sure our own cup is a Venti and constantly overflowing with the goods; otherwise, we are going to be left with toddler backwash. Let’s be honest – no one wants that!
As women, our brains need to consistently reset, shut down, and recharge on a weekly basis. I know that most of us, myself included, are not even recharging weekly. We’re always running off a schedule or within a time frame, worrying about what we will be serving for dinner or packing for lunch the next day. We wonder when the next work or school deadline is, what daily events or activities we have planned for the week, or who has a dentist or hair appointment today. We never allow our brains to just stop and rest. As humans, we need that moment of silence or five minutes to jam out in the car before walking into the next activity. It’s a moment to just focus on one thing and nothing else – a moment of pure enjoyment. Don’t get me wrong either! I love being a mother and running my own business, but some days I just need a solid moment of pure bliss, which in my case is silence.
Functioning at 100% requires downtime. I fully admit downtime is really hard for me, and I have noticed it is really hard for a lot of other women too. We place really high standards for ourselves and enjoy the hustle to get things done. However, not taking care of ourselves may come to an end eventually, and our health will take a hit. Our immune system fails us, our mental health deteriorates, and our body eventually makes us stop in our tracks. The enjoyment eventually turns into resentment as we, instead, focus on what’s not getting done rather than the pampering.
Not only do we women run at high speeds, we are constantly picking and poking at ourselves. We have a habit of comparing our lives and bodies to other women we see or follow on social media platforms, ruining how we feel and view ourselves in the mirror. We are all victims of it! The most confident women still compare and fight the negativity. Instead of looking in the mirror and being proud of all the stripes, dimples, and lines that represent our own personal road maps of our lives, we view them as imperfections. Ladies, stop it! We were made to be different and unique, and our bodies are supposed to change over time, especially during pregnancy. It’s natural! Be proud of those milestones in your story. Trust me, your babies and loved ones view them differently. They see the real, at-home, heart-on-your-sleeve you. Own it!
Self love has its own meaning to each and every person; there’s really no way you can go wrong with the route you personally choose. There are avid travelers, relaxation seekers, fitness enthusiasts, fashion addicts, and my favorite, food connoisseurs. If you’re like me, then your mood sets the tone for what is necessary to clear the mind and recharge.
Here are a few ways you can really set life aside and focus on refilling that cup. Refill it for you. Refill it for your loved ones, and refill it for the pure enjoyment of being full.
Travel Somewhere New
I love traveling, even if it’s only a few hours away. I just love the idea of doing something so different from the normal routine and going into the unknown. My favorite adventures are experiencing historical sites and walking into different cultures. This can be anything from bright lights and big cities to the quiet and peaceful sounds of ocean waves or gentle wind. I rarely know anyone who comes home from a mini vacation who wasn’t satisfied with the downtime.
A Swedish massage followed by a full nutrient packed facial sounds like heaven to me. When my husband and I went on our babymoon cruise to the Bahamas, I made a point to go check out their spa. This was the most luxurious spa experience I’ve ever had! The view was the beautiful ocean, and it took me to a place of pure zen. There is no better way to relax than relieving muscle tension and draining the lymphatic system. I also recommend booking a couple’s massage or planning a hot date to the local hot springs too!
I am a full-blown shopping addict! I admit it, and there is no way of curing this guilty pleasure. Go buy a new outfit, get the sexy mesh black bra, put on some heels, and strut that beautiful body you were blessed with. I can’t tell you how amazing it feels to put on a new outfit or handbag and feel extremely confident knowing it was deserved. Soak in the extra attention girl!
Pop Those Bottles
Who says you can’t treat yourself to some delicious chocolates or a fulfilling meal to celebrate yourself? I am a huge fan of dressing up and making reservations at the best dinner spot in town. If you’re single, invite the girls out for some apps and drinks, treat your best girlfriend to some champagne and a candlelight dinner, or have a movie and snacks night in. We all know she needs it just as much as you do!
Sweat out the Stress
Hello! There is no better way to de-stress than to MOVE! Physical activity has already been scientifically proven to be a natural stress reliever, not to mention extremely beneficial to our overall health. Go try out that new hot yoga class you’ve been eyeballing for weeks and commit to it. Go join a barre studio, sign up for a dance class, or take it outside and snowshoe. The options are endless! Enjoy the alone time or make it a date with your spouse or best girlfriends. Not only will you be walking away with some new endorphins, you may just find a new hobby!
I really want you to see your full potential and worth as a fellow hustler, mother, and boss babe and to enjoy spending time on yourself. You are worth it! You deserve to treat yourself every now and then. If it’s hard to fully admit and commit, stop and remind yourself it’s for your overall health, which also greatly benefits your family and career. Without self love and acceptance, you will be pouring from a very dry, empty cup. Refill it! Fill it with the good stuff, and celebrate all that you are made of.