Love is a process.
Make a conscious decision every day to wake up and love. There are no days off. There are days where you may not feel it. Some days are easy days. Some days are difficult. Every day you must love.
This includes yourself.
Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.Matthew 22:39
The catch is, you can’t love others like you love yourself if you don’t love yourself. But, how do you maintain yourself in a world that continuously wants to take from you?
After learning how to show love to yourself, you must learn how to set boundaries. Make a definite decision to be clear on your needs and wants to others. You can’t do that without the self-reflection that I mentioned Tuesday, but what does that look like with actual people? You have to
There is a stark difference between being open to experiences and being open to being abused. There are new experiences that can help us grow and experiences that will take away from us. Know what things you are comfortable with and which help you grow. Also, know what things are hard on you and leave you emotionally & physically drained.
Listen to Yourself
If someone asks you to stay late at work, take on an extra assignment, or go out to an event you really have no desire to go to. Pause that moment and think about your initial reaction. Did you make the super uncomfortable face with the scrunched eyes and the uhhhhhhhhhhmmmmmmmm sound? Yeah, that’s you saying you don’t want to do it. Accept that and follow that desire.
This is the enforcement section. Have hours where you don’t answer your phone for work calls. Know when you have the energy for emotional labor and when you don’t. If something hurt your feelings, it’s okay to voice those things. To all of my givers out there, SAY NO!! You don’t have to do everything for everyone. No is a perfectly good answer and you don’t need to offer ANY explanation to do so. Honesty is also a perfectly good habit to build as you get older. They may not always like your answer but they will always respect it more than lying or avoiding it.
Surround yourself with loved ones. Specifically, people that care for your well-being. These are the people that will let you know if you are doing right AND wrong. They let you know when something is off and gladly share in moments with you, regardless of time.
We often want positive reinforcement and people that will make us feel good, but it is dangerous when that is all they do. If you can’t tell me that what I am doing is wrong, I might face an even worse consequence down the line and never know why.
Remember who you are. You are a child of God and worth love, joy, and peace. I will never say it will always be easy, but it is worth every second of learning yourself, embracing yourself, and loving yourself. Don’t let the world take that away from you.
What ways do you set boundaries for yourself? How do you protect your space and self? Let me know in the comments below.
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Turn Your Brightness Up!