It makes sense we often put our stuff ahead of ourselves. We’ve been told we need things to be happy. We’ve been made to believe that we are not enough. That we need a certain item, person, way of life, activity, amount of money, acceptance to feel okay again. This way of thinking can make us insatiable for something outside of us to take care of us. It also makes it hard for us to let go of those things that we brought into our lives to fix ourselves, even when they aren’t doing that.
We have the opportunity to shed this way of living by being honest with ourselves about how putting ourselves second is effecting us. That means taking time to look at our life. That looking will be different for each person.
For me it means noticing how I’m feeling in the moment. How is what I’m interacting with making me feel. For instance, last night, I decided to check email before going to bed. I felt it was an important action for me to take. But I noticed as I was looking at the email, I felt let down. None of the email was actually important. But what was more apparent was that I became aware that I put email higher than my well being. I wasn’t respecting that it was the rest time of the night. At that moment I needed to tend to myself.
I didn’t like that feeling. So I closed my laptop and laid down on the carpet in front of the fire in the fire place. I did some stretching. That felt good. It helped release the stresses of the day. I felt my connection come back to my heart. It always serves me to come back to my heart. It feels like the center of me. I felt okay again.
While stretching, I remembered the old days of answering machines. When I came home, the first place I would go was to check the answering machine. I craved seeing the blinking light. That meant that someone called me. That light made me feel important. I felt that I mattered. That meant that without the blinking light, I was something less.
I realized that I was feeling the same way about email. The craving to check email came from a desire to feel better about myself. I was looking for proof that I was okay. If someone took the time to write me, that meant that I had value. I was looking for something outside me to feel better.
It took noticing the pain living that way was causing me to stop that action. Once I did, my heart led me to something that nurtured me. It was during the nurturing that I got the insight.