Life can be hard can’t it? Especially when you have so many different things on your mind, so many people to consider and so many relationships to balance. Are you an expert at what others need but often forget about your own needs?
You’re not alone.
Before my career as a coach, I also had experience in this. I would say that I was living a life in which my main focus was the happiness of other people for probably an entire decade. I would always say to myself “if they’re happy, I’m happy”. I didn’t quite understand till later on in life how this attitude if used excessively was quite damaging to myself and in actual fact did not create happiness but the total opposite – unhappiness. I somehow felt stuck. I felt like I was great at listening and hearing other people, knowing how to make them happy but when I sat back and had a moment to myself, I realised that I was actually not that happy myself. I always felt like I was missing something which made me feel like there was always something more that I didn’t have. I always looked externally for the answers, whether that was to change jobs, move house or buy something that would make me ‘feel better’ and to no surprise, the answers never came to me. However, that all changed when I started having coaching and then eventually became a transformational coach myself.
So how did I manage to prioritise my own needs without fully letting go of the needs of my loved ones and how did I create a much more fulfilled life that gave me more overall happiness in myself?
The short answer is…I realised that confidence and happiness is not found externally but it is found internally within ourselves, however, to access this internal wonder is easier said than done – to dive deep into yourself is not an easy task which is a requirement if you want to step into a life of fulfilment. Only when you take the risk of truly diving deep into yourself is when you can make really powerful decisions and mind-set shifts. It can be painful and triggering, but once you move through that and get past that stage, you start seeing and experiencing the magic that’s within you. This is such an enlightening experience and we are ALL capable of experiencing this.
Most of us, however, rarely do the work to meet with our true selves, but the truth is that we all have magic and power within us but we need to make a conscious effort to find it and that takes real dedication to inner work.
When I took a deep dive into myself with the help of my coach, she made me realise that I have my own tools and resources within myself to tackle life’s challenges much more smoothly and affectively. More importantly, she supported me in knowing how to use these tools and resources by finding, understanding and prioritized what my own needs were and then using my tools within myself to action what I need from life, others and myself. The truth is – the more you respect your own needs and learn how to navigate them in the best possible way, the more you actually respect other people’s needs – creating much more balanced relationships all round. It’s a win win!
So, how have you landed here reading this post? Are you feeling somehow stuck, exhausted, stretched or unmotivated?
First of all, I cannot recommend transformational coaching enough as speaking from personal experience, transformational coaching was the passage for me in meeting my deeper self, making me feel much more fulfilled all round. In the meantime, here are some examples of what you could do to support your self-care and wellbeing.
1. Have a break from social media – I know that many of us are so often taken over by the influences and pressures of life, that often our own wellbeing is not our first priority. We find ourselves aimlessly scrolling on social media platforms and seeing people living what seems to be ‘wonderful lives’ to the outward world and that often gets us comparing ourselves to others which we all know isn’t good for our mental health. Try putting a time limit on how much you allow yourself to be on social media platforms – It might help you become more connected with yourself which is what is needed if you are searching for answers on how to turn to and respect your own needs.
2. Make time for yourself – We live in a world where a huge amount of us are workaholics, which is another contributor in making the gap between disconnection and connection to our-selves greater. I have been guilty of not making time for myself but I must say that the more I made a conscious effort to work on myself internally, the better I became (and continue to become) at putting my self-care as a priority. Ultimately, this doesn’t only benefit me, but everyone and everything around me too – when your self-care is in check, you are then able to give much better quality love and care to those around you and to your job and tasks you need to attend to in life. But that starts with putting some boundaries in place with carving time out for yourself. Perhaps allow yourself a certain amount of time a day or a week to carve time out for yourself and do something you love, even if it’s as simple as journaling or reading a book.
3. Communicate – We so often keep things bottled up inside of us. Try talking to your friends and/or family that you can talk with openly and if you don’t feel like you have the right people in your life to do so, then try finding a community in something you are interested in – book clubs, sewing clubs, sister circles, yoga workshops and try talking more openly with people you meet there. But no cover ups or facades, ok!?…If you feel down, don’t say you feel fine – be courageous enough to speak what you’re feeling.
4. Vocalise your needs – If you need something from someone, be honest with them. Your voice is worthy and your voice needs to be heard. We often carry shame in speaking what we really need or what we really want and then often find ourselves in situations that we don’t actually want to be in. Try to tell yourself that your needs are important and that your voice is worthy and needs to be heard.
5. Listen – If you put your practice and boundaries in by making yourself be heard, you have got to listen to others too when that’s needed from you. Listening to people is a two way healing process and it’s harder than it sounds. When people are opening up to you, they don’t need to hear “oh yea that happened to me too…” or “Oh this one-time I….” – No, they just need to be heard by you and that’s sometimes just sitting with what they are opening up to you about. People rarely need advice, they just need a listening ear and you’ll be surprised once you practice active listening how nourishing that actually feels for both parties involved.
Now to the fun parts…
6. Create a ritual like sageing your home – Sage is a very powerful herb that originated in Native America. It is known to clear negative energy and brings new positive energy into your atmosphere. I use sage daily and walk around my home with it to cleanse myself and my home. Replenishing your environment (where ever that is) is so important to make way for new energy. I usually put candles on whilst doing this to create a really nice healing space and ritual. Once I’ve saged my environment or while I am doing it, I do some meditation or do one of the things I will mention below at the same time….
7. Yoni-steam – (For females only). This is a vaginal herbal steam. This really helps clear the sexual passage which in females often carries blockages from our experiences. This always helps me connect to my root and really helps with checking in with myself. You can get the herbs from a herb shop and you can buy a yoni-steam seat or just use a pot or bowl.
8.Tell yourself three things that you love about yourself everyday – In time, you might start to realise the things you never liked about yourself are the things you are starting to appreciate now. If there are things you really don’t like about yourself and they are not going away, start to question why. Is it society making you feel this way about yourself? When did you start not liking that about yourself? And where did this come from? This can really help you own your shadows and work with them deeply.
9. Find something to do that you love – Mine is yoga. Creating a dedicated space and time for something you love is a great discipline to your wellbeing. In the past, I would find it so hard to say no to clients when I knew it was my yoga practice time. But now I find a way around it – no one is disrupting my yoga schedule and your time’ should be preciously guarded too.
10. Eat healthy food – Be mindful of what food you put into your body. Remember your body is your temple and you really are what you eat. I’m not going to suggest what to eat because healthy eating means different things to different people but whatever it is, be mindful and eat nourishing foods. Obviously the leafy greens go without saying and preferable organic and locally sourced.
11. Create a spiritual alter in your home– (and by that I don’t particularly mean religious although it totally can be) This helps bring you back to yourself. A few examples of what I have is a big Buddha which for me represent peace, a candle, different crystals, a gong bowl, incense, a picture of a uterus which helps remind me how powerful women are, and a few other things that come and go. This sacred space is personal to you and can support you in re-focusing and be in a sacred place that you can meditate in front of or set affirmations.
12. Do some solo trips away – I know this cannot always be done, but if you can, travel alone. Travel to places where you can really experience the authentic true culture of that place. Interact with people that aren’t like you. It will open your mind up and make space for yet more self-discovery. Expanding of the mind and being open to new cultures, people and ideas will only support you in going further and deeper into your journey of self-discovery.
13. Face yourself – Be honest with yourself…this could be, for example, to really explore some dark sides of yourself. This could be negative inner judgment, childhood experiences/traumas, how you view yourself and others, how you treat yourself and others, how your positive/challenging experiences in the past shape you today? Do you need to do some un-doing perhaps, or do you need to give more fuel and energy to the parts of you that you love?
Last but not least I am going to leave the most important to last –
14. Hire yourself a transformational coach –
As I mentioned, before I became a coach and grew my own coaching practice online, I had transformational coaching myself and it was a true game changer to my overall happiness and fulfillment in my life – It totally transformed me.
Transformational coaching is a little different to therapy and traditional coaching whereby we explore all areas such as past events and experiences that may have created unconscious patterns in the now as well as exploring inner barriers and blocks, all in order to open up new possibilities of yourself to walk closer to your desires and wishes, creating new ways of thinking and acting to help fulfill your deepest yearnings.
Transformational Coaching can help you find the tools within yourself to deal with challenges life throws at us and help you become the you that you may be able to see but aren’t quite living to its fullest yet.
As a Transformational coach, I have supported many women overcome their hurdles in life to step into a life that feels full for them, a life that they could have only dreamed of. I have worked with many different types of women from a variety of backgrounds and cultures and maybe today might be the day that you take that step in booking yourself a session.