Most moms have been told “take care of yourself”. Self-care has become pretty mainstream.
But I see a lot of moms stuck at self-care when their soul is asking for self-love.
Seriously, I highly recommend self-care. I recommend that we all get 7–8 hours of sleep at night, and if we have new babies, that we sleep during the day when they sleep. We need to move our bodies, eat reasonably healthfully, and take time to do nurturing things that refresh and rejuvenate us. You may choose to meditate, rest, socialize, get in nature, get mani/pedis, sing, write . . .
Are you doing that? Taking care of yourself—and still feeling like something’s missing? I was totally good about girls’ nights, pedicures, exercise, and other forms of self-care.
But I still felt a sense of emptiness … unfulfilled and resentful … like something was wrong with or missing in my life.
I’ll always advocate for self-care, but to get what you really want, you need self-love.
I needed to know myself, accept myself for who I am, and bring more of ME into my life, my family, my friendships, and my work. I needed to honor my own hopes, dreams, and aspirations and value myself enough to reach for them.
Make Yourself a Priority
I wanted to unravel all of the beliefs and conditioning that have been layered upon me and find the real me.
I needed to treat myself with the respect, kindness, and support I would give a best friend.
I wanted to feel comfortable in my own skin and safe to be me, fully.
My relationship with ME needed to become a priority.
There’s probably a little voice in your head thinking “that sounds self-indulgent” or “selfish.” I get it, we’ve been conditioned to believe that it’s noble to care for everyone else and put ourselves last.
But let’s be clear:
Self-love is the conscious act of learning to accept and love ourselves so that we can give and receive love more freely.
The more I love myself, the more capacity I have to love others. The more I accept myself, the more I can accept you.
It’s the opposite of selfish.
Self-love is powerful. Self-love is transformative.
When we learn to love ourselves, it’s truly a gift to others around us.
When we love ourselves, we
- can get more comfortable with disappointment. When things don’t work out, we don’t see ourselves as a failure. Instead, we recognize that shit happens!
- understand that we need support, kindness and compassion and that we’re entitled to it. So we offer ourselves support and kindness, or even seek some extra in the arms of a loved one or friend, knowing that we deserve it. That we are enough.
- become less concerned with success and achievement and begin to see that we’re lovable and good enough even when we make mistakes and experience failure. We relish in the journey and not just the goal. And when we are striving for a goal, it stops us from judging ourselves as not enough right up until we achieve that goal.
Self-love is the foundation for authentic connection. We all need human connection, and self-love helps us learn to break down the barriers within us that keep us from true connection with ourselves and others.
So, don’t give up that mani-pedi or girls’ night out – we need those!
But if you’re rocking your self-care and still feel the need for something more or something different, maybe self-love is really what you’re looking for. Self-love requires a lot of inner work, but it’s a transformational path that leads you to beautiful places – it’s the unexpected path to true happiness.