Thursday, October 15, 2009

Take care!

This week's topic was "DIY: Project ME!" about taking care of yourself as a priority in weight loss. What? you might say..... What difference can it make in weight loss?

Plenty. So here's the deal: take care of yourself because no one else will.

It doesn't matter if you're married or single, in good health or struggling, childless or Michelle Duggar ........... if you learn nothing else in life it's that no one else can care for you. You have to care for yourself first and foremost. Oh sure, there may be people around (spouse, child, etc.) to help you in your self-care, but you have to do it for yourself.

I don't know why exactly, but sometimes we have a lot of trouble with this concept. Maybe because we're women -- generally, the nurturers, caretakers, etc. It might be because we're Southern and it's drilled in us that the key to JOY in life is to put Jesus first, Others second, and Yourself last. There's guilt for not handling everything life throws at us. There's difficulty in saying no to people we care about (and then feeling resentful for not saying no to those who need to be told that, but we just can't bring ourselves to be meeeeean to them).

I know. Believe me, you've no idea how difficult it is for me to set a boundary because I want everyone to like me. However, the older I get, the more I realize I need to say "no" in order to really care for myself as I should. I mean, seriously, where in the Bible does it say, "Love your neighbor better than yourself?" It doesn't, by the way. It's "as" yourself. So really -- are you helping people by always giving in, and feeling resentful? Really -- do those whom you love truly benefit from you being sick and tired of being sick and tired? And really -- are you helping yourself when your inability to say "no" to others means you can't say "no" to the Twinkies calling your name?

If you don't take care of yourself, no one else will.

This is my mantra. I am 10 days from turning 40. I am single -- partly by circumstance, but mostly by choice (I am so incredibly choosy, I make Jif look like a floozy. Word.) I have no kids, and Maddox ain't gonna be around when I'm 80. I have a brother, and lots of friends, and right now, my parents are still here. But when it comes right down to it, there is only one soul on this entire earth who has the responsibility for my care: me. I have to do this and do it right because I'm all I have. That's it, that's the list.

Do I still have trouble with boundaries? Sure do. We all want everyone to like us, but I'm learning to appreciate being respected rather than liked. And I'm learning that it's okay to be a little selfish for the greater good.

And isn't your care -- physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, and every other way -- really in your best interest?


Nancy said...

You are absolutely right. I will try to make this my mantra, as well. Thanks once more for the wonderful, calorie-free food for thought! And early Happy Birthday!

Buck said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog. I'm glad you enjoyed the bit about growing up Southern Baptist.

Also, I'm glad to have found your corner of the forest in blogopia and will be stopping by.
Good stuff!