Twelve Steps for Self Care

12 Steps for Self Care

1) If it feels wrong, don’t do it. Usually, when I do something which doesn’t feel right it ends up being a disaster.

2) Say “exactly” what you mean. Communication can be frustrating and sometimes I wondered why the other person didn’t understand what I meant to say. When I analyze what was actually said, I realize I didn’t use the proper words or maybe I was trying to sugar coat it or danced around the meaning, which left a false impression. Other times I just didn’t know exactly what was meant until the conversation was over. Maybe those are the times it’s best to be quiet and just listen to the other person.

3) Don’t be a people pleaser. It is enjoyable to please others, but when words are just said and not heartfelt, it’s lost pleasure and becomes bothersome. When you hear “we should get together sometime” or “let’s do lunch” from the same person every time you run into them, it’s lost its meaning.

4) Trust your instincts. Remembering this can save grief and regret later on. My best results come when I listen to the inner voice and trust my instincts.

5) Never speak badly about yourself. Sometimes I do this in an attempt to be humble, but it doesn’t build self-character. On the other hand, when I hear someone else doing this I feel uncomfortable and don’t know how to respond, wondering if they’re looking for compliments or sympathy.

6) Never give up on your dreams. I feel uncomfortable using the word never, however it’s true that if you don’t dream it, you won’t achieve it. Some dreams just need adjustments along the way while achieving them.

7) Don’t be afraid to say “No”. It’s not possible to do everything, therefore saying no is better than saying yes and not doing it.

8) Don’t be afraid to say “Yes”. Sometimes “no” is the easy way out when asked to do something we’ve never done before. When we say yes and stretch outside our comfort zone, we learn and grow.

9) Be KIND to yourself. It’s easy to judge ourselves without understanding why we can’t accomplish what others do. Often we compare our imperfection to someone else’s perfection, not realizing their circumstances or the time and effort they’ve put into perfecting this skill. Because we’re usually striving to be a better person, it’s difficult to accept our own shortcomings and mistakes. It’s important to be the best you can be, while forgiving yourself and learning from your mistakes.

10) Let go of what you can’t control. A lot of energy, time and emotion can be wasted on things out of our control. Progress is best made by focusing on what we can control.

11) Stay away from drama and negativity. I usually avoid this by not listening to talk radio or watching much television, but I don’t stay away from people I care about because they are going through a rough time which is causing them to be negative.

12) Love. There’s a difference between love of self and an excessive love of self. A balanced love encourages us to love others equally. I undoubtedly cross over the line sometimes, but try to be aware of it. I know I’m happiest when giving genuine love to other people and realize that’s when I feel the most loved.

 

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