Kindness and care starts with you

Kindness and care starts with you

We're all familiar with the idea of being kind and caring but how often do we apply it to ourselves? Because, it all starts with us, right? If I'm not nice to me, if I don't respect and care for myself, it makes it pretty hard to be me. 

Caring about other people, what they need, how they feel, checking they're okay, worrying about them – that comes naturally, it's what you do. You don't want to do anything that could possibly cause disruption, upset someone or offend them, even by accident (which by the nature of being an accident would be unintentional) but you still worry about it. 

But what about you? What about your needs, your feelings, disruption to your life? What care do you need, what do you need to feel okay? I know, I know, you're fine, you'll look after yourself once everyone else is taken care of, they come first. So, does that mean you come last? Your needs, your health, your peace of mind – they're less important than the next person's? 

Kindness and care starts with you

Written that bluntly it may seem daft but this is the message so many of us give ourselves all the time, even if not consciously. By taking care of everyone else, by forming a mental queue in your head where your family, your friends, your work, your colleagues and your community all come first and you come last you're telling yourself that you and your needs don't matter. 

And your needs do matter. You matter. Not only to yourself but to others. When you don't take care of yourself it's not just you who misses out. And when your needs are met it's not just you who benefits.

You aren't on this planet to make everyone else's life better, to worry about everyone else, and to make do with a shadow of your own life. You're here to live with ease, fulfilment and joy just as everyone else is. And that begins with giving yourself the time, consideration and compassion that you give to others.

When you're rested, nourished, relaxed, energised, supported – when you feel like you – how does that really feel? What are you like around other people? And when you're tired, stressed, harassed, feel put upon, under pressure and uncared for, what are you like? How do you go about life?

When you feel good you feel good and that's important. That matters. And when you feel good everyone else benefits too because you're calmer, more patient, relaxed, creative, resourceful, fun and all the things you want to be and can be.

So, how can you give yourself the love, kindness, compassion and support you need, so you can feel your best for yourself, as well as for others?

gabrielle april 2021
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