Published in Sixty and Me, July 2015
Lucille Ball said it: Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself first to have a positive and joyful attitude in life. Loving yourself first kills the negativity that builds up in our hectic environment and culture. We’ve got so much going on in life that the way to keep our life balanced and healthy.
You know what it’s like to feel off balance from time to time. When things don’t go well, we have a queasy feeling in our stomachs. Thornton Wilder, one of the great playwrights of the 20th century, had a line in his wonderful play, “The Skin of Our Teeth,” which I still say today (I played the lunatic maid, Sabina, in this play decades ago): The world’s at sixes and sevens! I have absolutely no idea what that means, but it’s crazy enough to lend credence to my sometimes off-kilter condition.
How do we re-connect and re-discover our authentic self because if you’re anything like me, sometimes I lose track of it all. The micro gets in the way of the macro and I can’t seem to find the forest through the trees. I may look cool and collected, but I’m a mess inside. Focus is off, lump is tickling in my throat, and dreams are creepy. I have anxiety over just being anxious for who knows what reason and why are my adult sons so distant and cryptic?
What in the world is going to happen next? These are all the fears we produce over and over again and keep us stuck in the quicksand of our own making.
Do we have the patience to wait until our mud settles? Can we remain unmoved until the right action comes along?
Well, yes if we love ourselves first, be true to our values and know that we are simply part of the spectrum of a life that we are making – the great, big, wonderful life we are living in in the present.
There are many life’s lessons to regain our strength, to find balance and be the best that we can be. It takes a little thought, a little patience and some old-fashioned tenacity, resourcefulness and resilience to keep us loving ourselves.
Here are a few ways to practice self-love in no particular order:
Follow your heart
The one brilliant piece of advice my Jungian therapist gave me in my year of therapy was: follow your heart.
Be true to yourself
If you know who you are and acknowledge the truth of your journey, your dharma, there will be no struggle.
We create our own status in society
Apply no blame to others because we are responsible only to ourselves; we make the choices.
Prioritize what’s important
Begin every day by doing the most important thing – something that promotes positive energy, lights your fire, adds to your knowledge.
Cultivate the art of saying no
Saying no, if that is what you really want to say, gives us strength and we take care of our needs.
Have confidence in your abilities
We know we have everything inside us to be the best that we can be.
That’s how we learn and grow.
You’ll be delighted.
Find compassion and forgiveness in all things
And the positive energy will be a prevailing force to ensure balance.
Have an attitude of gratitude
Gratitude will inspire your life and create abundance and positive energy for living.
There are simple and effective life tools for a healthy and balanced life. But first love yourself best.
This is a guest post by Joan Moran. Joan is a keynote speaker, commanding the stage with her delightful humor, raw energy, and wealth of life experiences. She is an expert on wellness and is passionate about addressing the problems of mental inertia. A yoga instructor and Argentine tango dancer, Joan is the author is “Sixty, Sex, & Tango, Confessions of a Beatnik Boomer.” Check out Joan’s website, Twitter.