We often prioritize the needs of other people in our lives letting our own needs fall by the wayside. In actuality, making yourself a priority creates more peace in your life and allows you to give to others in a more meaningful way. Challenge yourself to start improving your relationship with the most important person in your life (hint: it's you) by asking yourself these 5 questions.
1. How well do I know myself? I am not talking about how you like your coffee or whether you’re an early bird or a night owl, although those things are important too. I'm talking about understanding what makes you tick, what your strengths and weaknesses are, and what your goals in life are. By understanding what makes you uniquely you, you will be in a better position to begin living an authentic life. You will be able to express your wants and needs more effectively and begin to see yourself living more aligned with the life you want to live.
2. How often am I checking in with myself? Here is a fun game I play with my clients to see how mindfully they are living. I ask: what did you have for lunch two days ago? The answer reveals so much about how present you are throughout the day. When you are more present in your daily routine, you allow yourself to live less on autopilot and begin to live more intentionally. By checking in with yourself you will be in a better position to give yourself what you need when you need it.
3. Am I working with myself instead of against myself? How much of what you do in your day-to-day is creating happiness, peace, and fulfillment? How much is creating stress, negativity, and emptiness? Begin evaluating your lifestyle to see what feels right and what does not. Choose to fill more of your time with things that energize you instead of drain you. When something doesn't feel right, ask yourself how you can make it better or whether you can create an exit strategy.
4. How balanced is my life? Life will never be 100% smooth sailing, calm seas, and sunny skies. That being said, it also will not always be stormy. Experiencing those challenging days allows us to feel good about making it through and empowers us to appreciate the calm. When you are truly connected to the moments that you are feeling peace, you are able to live in that moment and enjoy it. Choose to find a healthy balance and do your best to maintain it. Acknowledge when things suck and choose to see the positive as well. Working with yourself and knowing when things are feeling off balance gives you the opportunity to catch yourself in real time and make adjustments.
5. How often am I giving to myself? The answer should be daily! Self-care is the lifeline to sustainable peace. It could be an affirmation acknowledging how well you handled a challenging situation. It could be listening to an amazing playlist on your way to work and being truly present with the music. It could be a 5 minute meditation on your lunch break. Utilize all the awareness you have gathered from the previous questions to feed your soul with small and big gifts every day.
I am challenging you to start becoming your own best friend. Begin getting to know yourself better, work with your strengths, acknowledge your weaknesses, find the balance, prioritize your needs, and be generous and kind to yourself.