Start Your Day Caring For Yourself – in less than 3 minutes!
Self-Care Belief and Habit #1
Believe: “If I start my day by taking care of me, I will feel better taken care of.”
Take A Daily Act of Love: Ask yourself what you need, first thing, every day . . . and then give it to yourself, without question and without fail.
How many times after waking up in the morning have you checked your email, voicemail or electronic device before you peed? Thought about your to-do list before you thought about how you were feeling? Dialed into the Internet before dialing into the Divine? Started your day startled by your buzzing alarm clock? How many times have you inputted and ingested stress-producing thoughts and energies that remind you of how much you have to do, how much you didn’t get done yesterday, and how little time there is to get it all done? Or started your day time-deficient, love-starved, and disconnected, feeling like you’ve already failed and fallen behind, focusing on everything and everyone else except for yourself?
Kristine Carlson, author of Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff for Moms and Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff for Women, sums the power of this self-care belief and habit up the best: “How you start your day is how you live your day.”
Start in stress, live in stress. Start feeling like there’s so much to do, live feeling like you never get enough done. Start disconnected from yourself, live the entire day unaware of what you need. But start your day connected to yourself, and you’re way more likely to make sure that your needs get taken care of as well as everyone else’s. Start your day connected to your breath and your body, and you’re likely to stay connected to your body and its needs. Start your day connected to the Divine, and you’ll feel supported all day long and be able to hold a stronger sense of inner peace throughout the day.
Have excuses started rolling through your mind? “I don’t have time to meditate for thirty minutes; my children need me.” Or: “I’m just not a morning person. I don’t have time . . . I don’t have time . . .” While all these things may be true, they are never the real reason why we can’t. We just don’t believe that we can.
You don’t have to spend thirty minutes on a cushion, teach your kids how to make their own breakfast, or start waking up at 4 am for exercise,. You need to shift your mind-set to one that assigns top priority to your own mental, spiritual, emotional, and physical health. And then watch the miracles occur! When you start to value yourself by spending your time on you, and by choosing how you start your day, your entire day will shift. Try the following simple but mighty Daring Act of Love. One takes less than three minutes, and the other requires no extra time at all. Then notice how they change your self-care pulse.
Daring Act of Love: Start Your Day by Taking Care of Your Needs
Upon waking, open your eyes and then close your eyes immediately. Put one hand on your belly and one on your heart. Take three deep breaths and ask yourself this question: “What do I need in order to take care of me today?” Listen for your best friend’s answer (that is the voice of your Inner Wisdom). She will tell you. Whatever she says, make sure you get it. Make a commitment every morning to give yourself what your Inner Wisdom says you need. This may be a actual thing, an action to take, or who knows! Do this ritual for seven days and notice the impact. Become aware of which of your unconscious anti-self-care beliefs get revealed and which of your habitual patterns get pushed out of their comfort zone. Challenge yourself to go beyond comfort into radical self-care!
For extra support, keep a journal close to your bed and write down what your Inner Wisdom says and the commitment you make – on behalf of yourself as your own b.f.f – each morning. Use it as a big permission slip that says, “You can <<insert self-care commitment>> today.” Rip the page out of the journal and take it with you as you go about your day. When the time comes to take action, read the permission slip to yourself and take the radical act of believing you are worth spending your time on.
The excerpt above was taken from the book “Madly in Love with ME: The Daring Adventure to Becoming Your Own Best Friend” written by Christine Arylo and published November 2012 by New World Library.
To receive the free Self-Love Kit including a hand-illustrated e-book and powerful self-love teachings, including on radical self-care, from Christine Arylo, go to www.MadlyinLovewithME.com