Need replenishment? You must be depleted. So, how does a depleted person find the time and the will to replenish? By putting yourself higher up on your list.
We all know how to take care of ourselves; we just seldom make the time to do so. We put other things higher up on our list and never get to us. When a friend says you need to take better care of yourself, do you say “YA BUT I can’t right now.” Here are three YA BUTS you might be using to keep yourself low on your list:
- YA BUT taking care of me is selfish. Understand that taking care of you is not selfish. It doesn’t mean ignoring the needs of others; it means not ignoring your needs. Not putting yourself first is selfless. Literally not having a self.
- YA BUT others will be mad at me. Taking care of you is vitally important to personal happiness. Keep in mind that if you are happy, you will treat others with respect. By not being happy, you become irritable, creating a tendency to disrespect others. Disrespecting someone only creates negative consequences and so amplifies your unhappiness and the other person’s. Stop this downward spiral before it begins.
- YA BUT they can’t do it without me. Remember that they can’t do it when you are depleted either. Put first things first. Every frequent flyer knows the phrase, “In the case of cabin decompression, put your own mask on first before helping others.” This goes for off the airplane, too. If you have nothing left to give, you can’t help yourself, much less others.
Next time you hear yourself using a YA BUT, do one or all of the following:
Know which way is “west”
“Go West, young man” is a quotation by American author Horace Greeley concerning America’s expansion westward in the mid-1800s. If you know what your true “west” is, you can focus on it and use to guide your decisions. If your “west” is career success, career success means being the best you possible.
Decide what it this takes to be your best self. Rest, exercising, meditating, eating right, and spending time with good friends all become a part of your career success. They become important. You find time. If your “west” is happy, well-adjusted children, model what it takes to be happy and well-adjusted yourself. 80% of what we teach our children is the behavior they see us doing. Know where your “west” is and make decisions accordingly.
Use an affirmation
It is a well-known fact that one comes to believe whatever one repeats to one’s self. I started saying the affirmation, “I have more than enough time to do all the things I want and need to do,” when I was a busy working mom with small busy children.
I said it like a mantra and found my time was not finite but something that grew as needed. With this affirmation, you will have plenty of time for what you need to do – including taking care of yourself.
Know your crash point
Women sometimes are depleted because they put the needs of others ahead of their own needs. They go until they run out. They crash physically, mentally or spiritually OR all of the above in what becomes a FORCED replenishment. Your body makes you replenish.
What do your crashes look like – headaches, illness, grumpiness, a good case of busyness? Know what your forced replenishments usually are and begin to catch them before they reach the crash point. Don’t know what they are? Ask as trusted friend.
Imagine what you would say to a friend who needed replenishment. Now do it yourself.
Where are you on your list?