Why do we always need to hit rock-bottom to prioritize self-love?
You have one life, and you have one self. The most important relationship you will ever have, the only one that you can craft over and over again and deepen is the one with yourself. Truly. It suffuses the colour of your mood, the quality of your relationships to others, and the trajectory your life will take. I have written about how to start practicing self care in the past, and sure- the topic isn’t new. You will find there are countless articles, Instagram posts and whatnot on the topic. Nothing is new and yet everything is – for me.
The very beginning of this year was a whirlwind, a staggering – emotional- unstoppable motion that left me excited, exhausted and well - a little bit broken.
In a matter of weeks, I was suddenly engaged to be married to the love of my life (that in itself was quite the milestone to arrive to, to take in and process), I had successfully launched a luxury scented candles business (with that same man) and with all the tremendous amount of work any entrepreneurial projects take, I had travelled to London, Dubai and Amsterdam on business, for weeks at the time and back to back. And oh boy, the pressure and guilt and the impossibility of having it all came rushing back, crushing me with its heavy wave.
It’s not that I wanted to be– it’s that I thought I could be the entrepreneur our new business needed, the super performing employee, the writer I wanted to be, the perfect bride, the engaging friend and daughter. And that was just too much.
After hitting the wall two weekends ago, getting physically ill- my body shut down and my mind went dark. Like real dark. I found myself crying, put plainly I got irascible, snappy and just – well, sad. And I took it up with anyone and everyone.
What I hadn’t quite had, was the my time for clarity.
I needed to process the fact, two of the biggest ‘things’ (to avoid ticking the achievements box) had just occurred into MY life. I was engaged. And God knows I had been planning that very day since the age of 16. It would be us. Magically be forever us. We had created, labored and launched a business – which had been a dream in the making for years and years (and years). And yet I was just running after my own shadow, unable to size the importance of it all.
Then, I hit PAUSE.
Whatever your journey is, it is so important to take the time for self. To often stop and reflect on time passing. To be present, to really be present to your life.
So, I wrote down lists, as I tend to do when SH*T hits the fan. Lists on paper help me clearing- up thoughts and seeing more tangibly the bigger picture of my life. The first list bulleted the things that had happened, the huge and the small. On another list, I wrote down all the things that mattered to me. Not in business, not in material terms but the values, the people, the legacy that really did matter and resonated with my why. And a third one of all the selfcare items that were game changers to my mental health and I couldn’t compromise on anymore.
I thought I’d share the later – as a nudge. And if you too - like to write – be as specific as possible. Chat with yourself.
No matter where and (almost) no matter when, Evodie you know that to feel rested, present and happier when you respect your self-time. So be mindful and try to follow this, for your own sake:
5 min meditation every night
1hr exercise by myself everyday
45 min reading time every night
Write a short journal entry
8 hours sleep are your ultimate ally
Gluten, dairy and sugar make you ill – be kinder to your gut
2 after-work events a week are your maximum. You need time alone
dinner time is us time - no work
morning time is us time - no phone scrolling
weekends are us time - less phone
You should be doing more of the things that feel good to you, I can only encourage you to be gentle with yourself. Don’t feel you are being selfish or narcissistic or dramatic. It isn’t just about the good it will do you. I recently heard at a HER dinner, an esteemed woman genuinely questioning ‘why are we chasing gold medals?’. Why indeed? Your gold medal is your mental and physical wellbeing. Your time, the legacy that you leave with others.
So, go and find what restores you and make self, a priority.