Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Challenge of Love

The other day for my meditation I pulled the Self Love Card from my Journey Deck.

Self Love
Often we are so busy - there's so much to do, to accomplish, to achieve - that we overlook our own self. This card is inviting you to take some time to honor your self.
Often we are quick to forgive others, quick to see their talents and their beauty, but much harder on ourselves. Take a moment to sit quietly in gratitude for all that you are. Make a list of all the qualities, talents, moments of giving, caring, kindness, beauty, brilliance, creativity that your own self has given you. Let the list overflow.
Ten make a fresh page of praise, expressing your gratitude for being yourself. When was the last time you praised yourself or acknowledged your beauty? It's time to be reckless: lavish yourself in self-love. Then find a gift, something significant, just for you. It can be a flower, a piece of music, something meaningful that says, "I honor you, I cherish you, I'm grateful." It's time to honor your own self. You deserve.
This got me thinking what a great idea this was for me to do and what a great idea it would be to share with my blogging friends. So I decided to make it a bit of a challenge. Instead of sharing fun facts about yourself, I am inviting you to spend some time doing the exercise above and sharing it on your blog. You can invite others to do the same and soon we will have a community of people who are appreciating and loving themselves.

Now I know it may seem awkward for some of you to "brag" about yourselves (because it was for me too). But I encourage you to push past that uncomfortable feeling and really give yourself some love. It isn't bragging. It is sharing your gifts with the world and more importantly giving yourself a much needed boost of confidence and a dose of self love.

Here is how it works: Do the exercise exactly as described above for yourself and then choose 3 things from your list of qualities and traits, and 3 from your list of self praise to share. At the end, post an online gift in the form of a picture, song, or video that honors you. Have fun with it. Here is mine:

Qualities and Gifts
1. I have beautiful eyes - for years people have commented on them. Strangers have come up to me and told me how beautiful my eyes are. Even when my skin and body where looking worse for the wear, my eyes still looked beautiful. I feel especially blessed that my children seem to have inherited my eyes.

2. I am a good communicator and public speaker - I am not sure what it is but when I am on, I am on. I am able to communicate in a way that is down to earth, simple and effective. I have taught people how to do many things over the years and I always get comments on how much they enjoyed it. It is definitely one of my strengths.

3. I am always willing to help out a friend in need- I have helped many people throughout the years with many different things. When I was divorced and living in a house with my 2 small children I let one of my friends stay with me. She also had 2 small boys about the same age. I had a small house so all 4 boys stayed together in one room. It makes me feel good to be able to help out when someone is going through something tough.

Praise and Honoring:
1. I honor myself for continuing to learn and to grow. It was easy to get comfortable inside my own little world and just stay there but I have expanded beyond that and am always learning new things. I have changed so much that sometimes I don't even recognize the old me. It is so awesome because this is the TRUE ME! Not what I think people will relate to, only what I relate to.

2. I honor myself for looking beyond "me" and doing what is right. When I got divorced and my ex-husband had a child by another woman I could have easily held onto the hurt and anger but I made a vow to myself that I wouldn't do it. I would not blame that innocent baby for being born into this situation and I would encourage a healthy relationship between my children and their brother. I used to babysit him on a regular basis, take him out with us, and we have even taken him on our family vacation with us. It is a healthy relationship for everyone and one that I am proud of.

3. I honor myself for learning how to love myself. This post would have been impossible for me to write before. I didn't really like any part of who I was. The funny thing is that nothing about me has changed, I now simply allow the truth to be heard by myself. I am proud that I have taken time for me, that I have learned that it is OK to think I am pretty cool. I am proud that I have learned to balance loving myself with loving those around me.

My gift to myself:
I thought long and hard about what gift I wanted to give myself. I began searching the Internet for a beautiful picture, I thought of all the moving songs I know that touch my heart and all the inspirational videos I have watched that have moved me to tears.

In the end, I decided on the following pictures of my children. As soon as I saw them I knew they were perfect. The first is the official Christmas card picture I sent out in 2007. Wow, they are beautiful and they take my breath away.

The second is the funny picture they got to take as a reward for posing so nicely for mom. It cracks me up and helps me remember the simple joy in life, the childhood innocence that I have long forgotten but is being awakened in me. It reminds me of the true gifts that I have been given in my life and the joy that I have everyday, right here, under my roof whenever I am present enough to accept it.

Love to all of you!!!


Lisa, aka Pixywinks said...

Now that is a challenge! I'm having a hard time just deciding on 5 things about me. LOL.
Your's are good. Hooray for self-love!
The boys are so handsome and hilarious.

Kristi said...

What a great challenge....I will get on that tomorrow. Today is a reading, not a writing day :)

Your kids are beautiful and do have your eyes! Are your 2 younger ones twins?

Your compassion and self love is shining through your words, I am so happy to have gotten to know you.

Hanlie said...

I love this post! Your children are beautiful! The picture has stirred my longing again...

This will take some time for me to think about, so I'll do it in a while...

You're a lovely person and I wished we lived closer together!