Many of us spend a lifetime disappearing into those we love; entwining ourselves in their happiness and their well-being. We “rise to the occasion” for him, her, them and it … and yet, somehow, fail to do this for ourselves.
How is it that we can be a good friend to everyone but ourselves? If you can be the rock of gibraltar and Zen master for others, then course (of course!) you can be that for yourself too.
In fact, you must be.
No matter what age you are, you can be your own best friend. You are in very capable hands. Have you ever desired more love, contentment, romance, money, health, adventures, friendships and faith? I know I have.
If you’re ready to lean into a kinder, more loving, more supportive relationship with yourself, here are four places to start.
1. Say attentive and affectionate things to yourself (yes, out loud).
A best friend compliments you on a perfectly assembled outfit, a lovely meal, a conscientiously chosen gift. You should do the same to yourself. When you’re in the privacy of your home, make time to give yourself one true, kind verbal compliment every day.
Your hair looks great like that.
You handled that tough meeting really well.
You started your day with a workout? High-five!
2. Treat yourself.
I bet your best friend sends you the occasional postcard, care package on your birthday, or buys you cute little so-and-sos because something made her think of you. You have the exact same power.
You get to treat yourself to massages after a long week, brunch at that sweet cafe on the corner, or a pedicure when you need it. You don’t have to wait for someone else to treat you well.
3. Take care of the nagging, annoying things that are distracting you.
Your best friend might (lovingly) tease you about that pile of clothes you keep meaning to bring to Goodwill and how your car always needs work. She might even nudge you toward her mechanic. She just wants you to be safe and live in a space that you love.
Give yourself a BFF talking to and make a list of all the things you need to really, finally take care of. Then do them.
4. Give up those bad habits and show yourself some tough love.
Every time you try to use that nearly maxed out credit card or order a fourth glass of wine or skip yoga class, do as a good best friend would: use some of that tough love on yourself.
Make a budget and stick to it, swap green tea for coffee, enroll at the gym that’s right around the corner.
If this list isn’t enough, perhaps a sincere declaration is necessary.
I love you. I’m here. I will protect you and support you until your last breath.
There is nothing you can ever do to lose my love and respect. I will love you through despair, defeat, joy, and delicious contentment. I am braver than failure and stronger than doubt. I will stay with you through it all.
Your love and support is not just for the world around you but also for the world that exists within you.
Written by Dr. Dannielle Dowling,
Dr. Danielle Dowling is a life coach and psychologist. Her book ‘Soul Sessions: A 5-Week Guide To Crafting Greater Joy + Making Big Things Happen In Life’ launched and she’d love it if you downloaded a free, 12-page sample here. Her goal is to motivate women to live inspiring lives; experience a life better lived and achieve their dreams whatever they may be. Connect with Danielle on Twitter and Pinterest.