Yesterday I talked about our yearnings and longings. Being true to them—and to ourselves—is part and parcel of our ability to love. For to truly love, it's necessary to be who we were created to be.
That means we need to be clear about who we are. Clarity is such an essential piece. And we can live many years of our lives simply doing what we thought was ours to do—and what we've even become very accomplished at doing—and still not even know what our true gifts and passions are. Sometimes it takes a bit of digging to get down to that. It's helpful to think back to childhood, too, and remember what really absorbed us and called to us then. There can be clues in that. Or think about what it is that when you're doing that, you truly lose all track of time. What energizes you? What gifts do you bring to the world?
If we are to truly love others, it's important to show compassion to ourselves. When we know and love ourselves well, we can truly be present to the others in our lives. We will be more generous-spirited and open-hearted.
And it's important to care for ourselves. Self-care isn't a luxury. It's really the foundation piece of caring for those others in our lives—contrary to what many of us learned as we grew up! If you and I take good care of ourselves, we won't be resentful when we also spend time tending to the needs of others. But when we spend our lives as doormats and give, give, give to others with no concern for ourselves, we can end up not only burned out—but deep-down angry and resentful.
That's no recipe for a joyful and love-filled life, is it? Does something need to change for you today so that you can practice self-clarity, self-compassion and self-care?