The past month has been weighed down with money worries, career anxiety, fear for the future and feelings of insecurity. This in turn has had an effect on my self-esteem; how I see myself and how I feel when I’m with others.
The main outcome of a much-needed business coaching session this week was that I need to love myself. And yesterday, I had another revelation.
I’ve been depending on external factors to make me feel okay. I’ll be good enough if and when… I’ll relax when I’m earning more money. I’ll be worthy when I have a flourishing business. I’ll feel secure when my boyfriend does and says all the right things.
However, the reverse should be true. I need to feel good first, anyway, irrespective of anything or anyone.
I have to love myself just because. I must stop placing conditions on my self-acceptance.
And I definitely need to stop waiting for someone else to make me feel good. Because that strategy is destined to fail. Catastrophically.
It’s guaranteed to foster pressure, disappointment and resentment. Feelings become extremely precarious. One action, one word, one thought has the power to tear everything asunder.
What I want to do now is come back to me. That creative, happy individual who knows herself, and who has a full and balanced life with work and friends and hobbies. Who now also has a boyfriend who’s gorgeous and good and full of love and enthusiasm.
But just because I’m now in a relationship doesn’t mean I should lose myself in it. An intimate relationship is actually an opportunity to find myself more deeply than ever before.
I need to live my life. Do the things that give me energy and inspiration. Be there for myself.
I have to stop abandoning myself whenever things go “wrong”. I must remember my worth, see my light, and know that I’m deserving of love and all the good things in life. I need to focus on all the positives that are right there in front of me.
Today is Thursday and I have the day off. Part of me feels ashamed that I’m not busier, that I’m not a part of “normal” working society. Then I remember that I have to stop rejecting myself.
“What’s the most loving thing I could do for myself today,” I ask.
An image of walking in nature flashes before me.
“The sea,” I think excitedly.
“Healthy, delicious food and coffee. And a good book,” I add.
I’ve come up with the perfect recipe: I’ll hike along the coastline from Bray to Greystones, have lunch in one of my favourite restaurants The Happy Pear, then wander back to Bray.
Most “normal” people work on a Thursday so I go alone. And that’s kind of perfect. My very own mini-Camino.
I don’t listen to music and I put my phone on silent. The weather goes from windy to sunny to rainy.
As I walk, I start thinking. Then I realise that I’m feeling bad. I observe this with interest.
Nothing has actually happened in the here and now and I’ve still managed to make myself feel bad. When instead I could be enjoying the beautiful views of aquamarine waters leaning into the horizon, mountain and birds and yellow furze. I could be breathing in the fresh air. Appreciating this time, this peace, this space…
So today I choose to come back to me, to stay with me, to love myself and to make myself happy. Because when I’m present to myself in this moment all is right in my world.
Today I take this big lesson from my little Camino back to my working life and to my romantic relationship but most importantly to my relationship with myself.
Images: Author’s Own
I felt like I wrote this myself. It feels nice to not be alone. I detach, my mind is in space, and my relationship suffers. Sometimes I feel like I’m addicted to melancholy. Baby steps I suppose. I, too, try to become aware and look at how I feel with interest rather than judgement. It’s a work in progress. Thanks for this post
Thanks for the comment, Katy.
It’s nice to share and realise that we’re not alone and that there are other people feeling similar ways to us.
We can get used to our default patterns. It’s just a habit. But we can change with awareness. And with change comes growth and a better life 🙂
What an inspiring post Sharon. Makes me want to jump in the car and head to this ‘Little Camino’ today! Loved the photographs. Really looking forward to taking this hike soon. Thank you again. Margaret
Thank you for the comment, Margaret.
I love this hike 🙂 Enjoy it whenever you go…