Ultimate self love, now that’s a come-hither headline if I ever heard one. And 100%, yeah baby, count me in. Spoiler alert, it is all about you, but in the realest and most in your face way.
5 years ago this was the post I put on Facebook.
“Pain medication and recent frequent exercise has resulted in no pain right now. This equals a little time out of the house today and I don’t care that it’s – 15 C . Celebrate the small stuff people and appreciate the moment.”
We’re beginning to understand the power of gratitude and appreciation as the road to greater happiness. Certainly it turned a bad situation into a more tolerable one for me. But is that good enough? Tolerable?
How is it that we can take the worst situation and turn it into one where we can appreciate what is?
It’s a choice of course, like so much in our lives, even when we don’t realize it.
Responsibility for self is an act of self love
Depending on our situation, maybe gratitude for the circumstances is exactly the right course of action. And, in it’s own way, living in chronic pain taught me a lot which has informed how I live my life now. In a bigger sense I came to realize a profound lesson in the power of becoming 100% responsible for my happiness. Responsibility for self is an act of self love.
At the time of writing that post I’d no idea what to expect from my life. I wasn’t working – couldn’t and didn’t know if I would again. Outings were almost impossible, and I was socially disconnected from the world. Physically and emotionally I had entered a dark time. It was also, ultimately, an opportunity to seriously reflect on who I was and what I wanted.
Over time I came to understand what I had control over and what I didn’t.
I began to journal and released my inner thoughts of my life and all the things I still hoped to do. I also began the journey of facing the truths of my relationships. Where I’d let myself down and how I wanted things to be better.
A search for belonging
My physical pain reflected the inner emotional pain I’d carried for years. I didn’t know that then. The journal writing and deep reflection helped me sort things out. I realized I’d been searching for belonging. Something I hadn’t experienced in my family of origin. I thought I had found it with my husband and his family.
Over time, I realized belonging begins within yourself, a piece of self love we don’t really think about. If you love yourself then as the late Maya Angelou noted –
You only are free when you realize you belong no place — you belong every place — no place at all.
Focusing inward, telling myself the truth, I realized I was never going to find what I sought within that marriage. It was hard to admit, but it also meant I could see where I had choices, even if I didn’t want to consider them.
While on the one hand he was caring and helpful in the face of my then physical reality, I’d also come to see how distant we were from each other. Other than sharing a history of raising a family, we’d very little in common. Our desires and ideas of how to live out the rest of our lives couldn’t be more different.
Laughter and shared experiences that brought us together, had been lost years before. Upon reflection, I couldn’t remember the last time we’d enjoyed each other’s company.
Despite my prognosis, I realized I needed to seriously review who and what I was willing to accept in my life.
The relationship was unhealthy and dysfunctional. While we’d both made various attempts to fix it, there were deeper issues that weren’t getting resolved. I could either accept them and continue to feel like a second rate, intrinsically flawed person, or I could choose a new course of action.
Becoming 100% responsible for your life
While I didn’t really see it for what it was, becoming 100% responsible for my life was the ultimate in self love. Whether I chose to stay or leave, how I treated myself, what I expected from others and from myself was a game changer.
I began to ask myself questions about my values and my dreams. What I wanted to achieve and the people I wanted around me. And finally, how I wanted to feel.
Each of us, regardless of our circumstances, are ultimately responsible for our life outcomes. The degree of happiness, of fulfillment, of feeling of worth and serving a higher purpose are our choice.
5 years ago, my physical pain was the price I paid for not being 100% responsible for my life.
Accepting the gift of self responsibility, means an opportunity to release pain, physical and emotional and truly live in the way you are meant to live.
Once I did, when I made the necessary and yes, difficult decisions; choosing to practice self love by no longer tolerating less than what I, or any of us deserve, my physical recovery was possible.
5 years later and I am now doing many of the things I thought were beyond my reach. Not only am I pain free, I have and am creating the life I wrote about in my journals.
It’s possible, for any of us, to create the life of our choosing. One that brings joy and satisfaction. Not that there won’t be challenges, because that’s the nature of life, but now you’ll realize you’ve always have the choice as to how to handle them.
So, what about you? Is your life where you want it to be? Are you ready and willing to make the changes necessary to create the life you’re yearning for? Don’t wait for a health or life situation to give you a shake, there’s no need.
This, my friend, is a great place to let you know that I will soon be bringing something new to my work.
Emerge is like no other online event you’ve attended.
I’ll share more details soon, but if you’re interested in knowing more about how to create a richer and more meaningful life, stay tuned. Great things are coming your way.