2 months ago, I stood in the shower in my NYC hotel room, sobbing.
I am one of those crazy people who wants to be more awake all the time, even if it hurts. I want people to lovingly call me out and show me the parts of myself that I can’t see, revealing the patterns that I am living so deeply in that they’re the air I breathe. I want to be challenged. I want to grow. I am a human, so I resist the hell out of it sometimes, but still, I want it.
Why? Because I’m here, alive, so I might as well open my eyes to all there is I can possibly see. I want to see. I want to feel.
On this particular day, I had just spent 12 hours being coached by my dear friend, Michael Ellsberg. 12 hours straight. It was beyond, beyond, beyond intense. Painful. Beautiful. At the end of the day, I lit candles in the bathroom and stepped into the shower. As the warmly-lit room filled with steam, I looked through the glass and saw myself in the mirror. Naked. Unraveled, spent and present. I put my hands on my belly, water streaming down my face, and an awareness washed through me…
I am it.
My primary responsibility
in my entire life is to take
care of me. This body.
I cried at the recognition of my impermanence.
I cried at the recognition of my sacred duty.
I cried at the recognition of all the times I’d put myself last.
I cried at the recognition of how much I was still waiting.
After all these years, I was still waiting to feel taken care of by the world, instead of sinking deeply and wholly into taking care of myself. There were still so many more layers of depth to my own experience of self-love.
We do this all the time –
wait for the world to take care of us.
: We wait to fall in love, or to fall back in love with our partner, so we can start building a life together.
: We wait until we feel better in our bodies, so we can start playing and allowing ourselves to be seen.
: We wait to hear what they want, what their plans are, what they think, so we can make plans for ourselves.
: We wait for our business to make enough money to sustain us, so we can finally start having some fun.
In the meantime…we struggle, we try to figure it out, we get by.
But… “in the meantime” is where life happens.
Struggling, hoping and waiting is a completely unsustainable approach. It doesn’t give us more energy, more life force, more incentive and more motivation to keep going — it gives us less. This old paradigm of work-work-work until one day when we finally have what we want keeps joie de vivre at bay. Do you really want to leave your joie de vivre to chance?
In the meantime…you are alive.
What if, instead of approaching creating your epic romance, fit body and fabulous business with struggle and overwhelm, you approached it with a focus on pleasure and sustainability?
What if you made it your job to take care of you?
The best kept secret, as I’m learning and integrating every day, to having what we desire is:
Having the kind of life today that nourishes the feelings you crave – living your “skinny life”, your “successful life”, your “epic romantic life”. This means creating sustainability and satisfaction in your life now, so you can keep moving. It means living a life of ever-increasing pleasure and ease. It means giving yourself the experiences that you think those other things will give you. It means not only talking about self-love, but living it.
When struggle shows up, as it will for us all, use it as a red flag that you need more spaciousness. More pleasure and ease.
Within that frame, here’s what self-love might look like:
: Keeping your side hustle while you build your business.
: Going out with your friends instead of writing your business plan.
: Writing your business plan with lipstick on and a glass of wine in hand.
: Buying a bright red dress that you feel great in, before you lose another 20lbs.
: Eating gorgeous, delicious food that nourishes your body because it feels amazing.
: Savoring a gourmet donut with your girlfriends at 1am, while laughing.
: Getting dressed in your favorite outfit…on a Tuesday.
: Running the numbers with Stevie Wonder playing in the background.
: Having a shower even though you are totally exhausted. It’ll help.
: Saying Yes to invitations from your friends, even though you have work to do.
: Subletting your apartment and buying a ticket to Costa Rica, so you can finally learn to surf.
: Not checking your email until 11am, because you’re more creative and productive that way.
: Making your own plans, not in defiance, but because you know what you want.
Or maybe it will look like something else.
Only you know your true expressions self-love.
Understand this: your business, lover or
skinny body aren’t going to give it to you.
It’s not their job, it’s yours.
Locate where you’re struggling (not enough money, working too much, eating mindlessly, etc) and start giving some loving attention there now. Infuse pleasure, so you can keep living into your desires. If these are your desires, who else is responsible for giving them to you but you?
It’s time to love the one you are entrusted with.
Self-love is your job.