As I get closer to birthing this baby, I am dedicating my Wednesday missives to breaking down what makes for healthy self-care in relationships.
Today, I just listened to my very wise teacher Diane offer the teaching that as human beings, we develop ourselves through our connections to others. No matter what, we are in relationship. We have a family, a few friends, perhaps an animal or two, and maybe even a relationship to some kind of spiritual force. And we always, always have a relationship with ourselves.
We need relationships to learn, to grow and to thrive. Without them, we start to break down on every level. They are that important.
Since relationships are so important, does this mean we have to be a doormat in order to hold onto them? Hell no! Having healthy self-esteem means we get to set boundaries with the people in ours lives who need boundaries. We are allowed to feel differently than them, act on our own feelings and let go of people-pleasing (finally).
(For more on this, please check out last week's video on how to differentiate our own emotions from other people's. This simple insight has been life-changing for me!)
This week, I'm sharing how our relationship with ourselves is reflected in our relationship with others. This concept reminds me of the Buddhist saying: "How we do anything is how we do everything."
If we are in a good relationship with ourselves, chances are that we have at least a few satisfying relationships with other people. If we avoid intimacy with ourselves - perhaps through a numbing practice like workaholism - then it's going to be really hard to invite or maintain healthy intimacy with others.
Particularly, there are two concepts - "Self-Improvement" and "Self-Care" - that I believe can make or break the experience of intimacy in relationships.
Understanding the difference will help you...
-treat yourself with real kindness.
-treat others with the same kindness.
-finally make the self-care breakthroughs you've always wished for.
-inspire others around you to do the same (without nagging them!).
To learn the subtle yet essential difference, please tune into the next video in the series, "How to Stop 'Fixing' People (And Finally Start Being Happy)." (Just click the image at the top of the page)
Check back again next week when I will share more relational self-care insights. In the meantime, please pass along your feedback and ideas for other videos. Hopefully this baby will hold off so we can continue having this conversation for at least few more weeks.
Thank you for being here in relationship with our self-care community! It means everything to me and I hope it gives you back something of value as well.