Practice Self Care: Approve Yourself.

Practice Self Care: Approve Yourself.

As humans, we all have a sense of belonging. For much of our lives we live seeking the approval of others, often using it as a barometer of how we approve ourselves. Many people spend the bulk of their lives trying to please others and engage in much self sacrifice and martyrdom just for the approval of others. In our capitalistic society/city life, working incalculable hours a day until every cell and bone in your body is overworked, defines you as a hard worker with good work ethic. In an unbalanced system, a person or parent has to be overworked, exhibit martyrdom or immeasurable amounts of selflessness to be revered as a saint, beautiful, acceptable to a subsystem, and merely perceived as “good enough”. It appears we are re-defining what “good” means with extreme characterization, while ultimately losing the peace of balance.

Imagine the words Selfless, Self Care, and Selfish on a spectrum. Selflessness appears on the passive end of the spectrum, and can lead a person to be self-compromising,self-neglecting, and co-dependent: all which can be truly self defeating to your self esteem and self value. Being too nice can also be used as a form of manipulation and can also be linked with Selfishness depending on a person’s conscious/subconscious intentions. On the polar opposite side of the spectrum is Selfishness. Selfishness can also be seen and experienced as too aggressive, isolating, and anti-social. Self care can be found in the middle of the spectrum, holding both sides together like Lady Justice holding the scales. Self care is balance, warm, loving, respectful of self and others, and assertive. Self care advocates for your needs while respecting the needs of others. Self care says “I accept and approve me, I acknowledge/am accountable for my wrongdoings, I practice empathy and compassion for self and others, my needs are important and worth advocating for, the needs of others are also important- but I will not do what neglects my feelings and needs for the needs of others”.

What others think about you is none of your business indeed. It’s important to acknowledge wrongdoings when they have been committed, but it is also equally important to detach yourself from the projections of others. Their objection and aversion with you, their ill-will and conscious retaliation toward you is not your burden to carry and not your stuff to own. At times, people project their inner processes/turmoil on you and displace their frustrations on you when it has nothing to do with you and more with their fears and reflections of themselves and/or an unresolved past issue.

Stop using the displeasure of others as a barometer of how you approve yourself. Nevermind the disapproval of your family. Nevermind the disapproval of your partner’s family. Nevermind the disapproval of your friends and foes. There will always be differences of opinion. Everywhere you land in life, there will always be someone that praises you and someone that does not. There will always be someone that believes in you and someone that does not. Their judgments are about them, not about you. Spending your energy on proving you’re wonderful only takes away from the energy you spend on making yourself even more wonderful. Focus every energy on building and living your dreams so that you may see them unfold. Self Love, Peace, and Happiness exist for you, but you must not get in your way to actualize it, or allow others to dictate your purpose. Practice the balance of Self Care; as being a martyr in any area of your life will not provide you with the peace, confidence, rest, and assertiveness self care affords. Do not play small in the world so that you may achieve the approval of others that do not understand you or your dreams. Be mindful of where you direct all of your attention and energies so that you don’t spend your life worrying about gaining others’ seals of approval. Give yourself the seal of approval. Live your light.

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