Sunday, January 28, 2007


Funny how you learn things. If you asked me last week, I would have said that for me to be happy, although I loved everything in my life, a lot of things would need to shift or change (less responsibility, more creative expression, a different home, etc.). I was totally drained and had no inspiration about my life at all.

Today, however, I'm sitting in the same apartment, with the same (not-so) chubby kitty on my lap (getting in the way of typing), feeling totally different. What's changed?

I took care of myself. Go, me!

Over the past week, including last weekend, I've been trying really hard to not stress, to listen to what my body needs (whether it's a walk or a turkey sandwich or hugs or whatever), not pressure myself creatively, etc. Day by day, although there were a few dips, it started to get better.

Yesterday, I took an idea that I'd been playing with for months and turned it into a painting. It was so much fun to not be all perfectionistic about it. I successfully battled the voices that wanted to tell me that because it didn't take three days to paint, it wasn't any good. I also let myself create it just for me, just for us, just for the house. And, I love it! And I want to make two more today!

I feel better about the house, I feel more optimistic about creative stuff (although I still need time off, I'm not ready to jump back into production mode yet), I'm happy to sit on the couch wrapped in a blanket and read the paper. I don't feel like I have to do crazy-making housework, I'm not feeling guilty about anything, and I'm feeling quite inspired creatively (both personally and business-wise). I don't have to cook for M. Terri did a lot around the house yesterday for me (while I sat on the couch and watched a movie!), so I feel all caught up. This is great.

So I was thinking, if this feels so wonderful, to take all this pressure off myself, what if I did it for a whole month? A month of being committed to taking care of myself in every way, as best I could? What would THAT be like? It's like the complete opposite of our Puritan ideal. Instead of berating myself for every mistake, I'd be encouraging and loving. Instead of eating in a hurry and feeling guilty, I'd plan a little bit ahead and have good food and enjoy it. Instead of wearing myself out with being perfectionistic about the house (which doesn't do any good anyway), I'd take that energy and go for a walk or jog.

What a crazy thought. I'm going to do it. I'm practicing for it right now, but starting Feb 1., in honor of Valentine's month, I'm going to spend a month being kind and loving and appreciative of myself! Let's see how this work out.

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