It’s Okay to Show Up for Yourself First!

“Our bodies are our gardens to which our wills are gardeners.”
– William Shakespeare

I AM A PEOPLE PLEASER. Let’s first start there. I have a habit of putting more on my plate than I can possibly chew. It is nobody’s fault but my own. I have tried to remind myself that it is okay to set boundaries. It is okay to say ‘no.’ Yet time and time again, I convince myself that not only can I handle all that is piled on my plate, but I can do it so eloquently that you can’t help but wonder, “how does she do it?” Reality check, I do it, but at a HUGE cost. Always at the expense of myself. Behind the scenes, I am overwhelmed. Scrambling. Having mini mental breakdowns as I mask my stress with smiles and laughs. Why do I do this?! Because I don’t want to let anyone down. Because I enjoy making people happy. There’s no better high in my book. And in a selfish sense, it provides the validation of an achievement. Another task checked off the list. I know, I’m a goal oriented freak. Honestly, it’s part of my high functioning anxiety. But that is a topic for another day. This past weekend I was reminded how quickly I can overwhelm myself. Typical case of showing up for others and not showing up for myself.

In retrospect, this past weekend was amazing. Saturday I spent the day at Bok Towers, a beautifully preserved garden in Lake Wales, FL. After spending the day in Satan’s playground (it was about 90 degrees), I went grocery shopping and continued home to prepare for a girl’s night I was hosting at my place. Truthfully, I should’ve taken the opportunity to nap. Being in the sun and heat all day can take a major toll on your body. But I wanted to clean up the house and make sure everything was fully prepared for the night. So I completely ignored my exhaustion and continued with my tasks. Well, before I know it, it was 4 AM when I finally laid my head in my glorious bed that night…and I had to be up at 9:30 AM. Sunday I attended a women’s self love party for all of the boss babes in the Tampa Bay area. It was a beautiful event filled with emotional moments in between. The event started at 12 PM and ended roughly around 4 PM. After, I went out to eat with a friend. I had every intention of going home after that but another friend contacted me asking if I was coming over her house since my fiance was there with her boyfriend. I should’ve said no but I hadn’t seen her in a while and wanted to keep her company. So I didn’t go home and went straight to her house. By the time I got home, it was 7:30 PM. But my day was not over. We were having a little get together for the Game of Thrones finale (RIP) at 9 PM and the place was a wreck. Of course, I felt obligated to clean. It didn’t take much after that before I was crying in the shower lol exhausted beyond explanation and feeling defeated for being such a crybaby. This is the behind the scenes no one really gets to see. I wanted to hide under a rock for a week straight just so I can recharge. I’m not telling you all of this to complain or make it seem like I have it SO bad. Just a simple timeline that illustrates that I did not take the best care of myself this weekend, mentally and physically. It is okay to be there for others. It is NOT okay to neglect yourself in the process. Because how can you put forward the best version of yourself, if you forget the importance of self care?

So here’s a few tips and reminders for effective self care (for you AND I):

  1. SET BOUNDARIES. Not one person operates the same. It is okay if you cannot, or simply do not want to deal with chaos. It is okay if you feel overwhelmed by too much thrown at you. It is okay to voice at any given time that you do not want to do something. And most importantly, you have every right to say ‘no’ with no explanation whatsoever. Boundaries have to be clear because how else with others know? Those who truly value your well being will understand, PERIOD.
  2. REST UP. I cannot stress the importance of adequate rest. You cannot run like a full service, mean machine if you do not replenish your fuel. Don’t burn yourself out on the account of others. Don’t burn yourself out on the account of productivity. Trust me, it does not work out. You WILL crash and burn as I’ve learned many times!
  3. BE MINDFUL AND IN THE MOMENT. Sometimes, the best act of love you can show yourself is to slow down and be present in the moment. Feeling overwhelmed? Stop everything you’re doing and take a deep breath. Inhale then exhale. Light one of your favorite candles. Take a break. Go work out. Have some fun in the sun. Read. Meditate. Put on a face mask. Eat that chocolate cake!! Indulge and enjoy every moment of it. Be mindful and attentive to your own happiness. Honestly, everything else can wait.
  4. RELEASE THOSE EMOTIONS. I’m a big believer that venting and crying can be cleansing. Not everyone wants to hear you complain. However, I can almost guarantee there is at least one person who is willing to be that shoulder to lean on without judgement or annoyance. Take advantage of that! It is human nature to be heard and understood. Don’t bottle up your emotions. Just remember that although it is okay to vent, it is not okay to dwell. Release and move on. This is something I am working on myself.
  5. UNPLUG. Let’s face it. We all need a day of solitude at one point or another. A day to unplug from all of the outside noise and enjoy some silence. A wide empty space that offers the opportunity to become inspired and motivated. One on one time with yourself is so important. Cancel those plans you were not feeling int the first place. Turn off your phone. Have a day with no organized agenda. Just go with the flow. Utilize your solitude and don’t apologize for it!

Let’s all make a conscious choice to take better care of ourselves. Be more aware of your needs and tend to them. Self care is not selfish and indulgent, it is survival. Be kind to yourself. We all deserve it.

Author: Angie Soul

Like a lotus flower, I emerge from dark, murky waters to reveal my beauty. Feeling and healing on this journey of life; glowing and flowing. I have always loved writing, but it has taken me 29 trips around the sun before I had to confidence to share publicly. I hope my writing, which is near and dear to my heart, sparks light and love in others.

12 thoughts on “It’s Okay to Show Up for Yourself First!”

  1. So true with what you said .
    And I never find time for myself
    Always someone or something.
    Thank you for sharing 😊

    Like

    1. I know 😔 in the end, you are only hurting yourself. Every yes you say to a person, is a no to yourself. Unless it’s something you absolutely love doing. But sometimes it’s just too much, you have to give yourself a break. Thank you for reading 😘

      Like

  2. Serg even said it, I always try to please everyone else. I always try to make other people happy and not put myself first. This right here, touched the heart. I felt this one.

    We gotta work on ourselves. Take a mental break.
    Thank you for this love.

    Like

    1. I’m glad you were able to grab something from this my love. I completely understand how it is to give and give and dont leave enough for yourself. But we have to remember that we can cant give people our very best versions unless we take care of ourselves first. It’s a hard lesson to learn. Thank you for reading 💜

      Like

  3. I kind of wish I didn’t relate so much lol. Especially on this impromptu work vacation I’ve started to do so many different things by the end of the day I’m feeling drained! It’s refreshing to see I’m not the only one feeling a little bombarded with life some days. The 5 tips were much needed & appreciated. 💕

    Like

    1. Girl I bet! To do lists mile long 😂 you are definitely not alone. It’s okay to take a step back from life sometimes. Recharge and center yourself, then go back out there ready to conquer! I’m glad you gained some perspective from this. Thank you for reading 💜

      Like

  4. Lil seester this is me everyday. I def need some much needed me time. I’m exhausted all time tryin to help n make others happy at my own expense it’s not worth it sometimes. I have to learn to say no dammit n stop worrying about how ppl feel or what they will say if I say no. I matter n the sooner I practice n learn this the faster I’ll be ok.
    Love you Lil momma, 🥰🥰😘😘😍😍🍷

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you for these tips because I am exactly the same, always want to please everyone. I get swollen feet every time I wanna cook good for my peoples, way off, but you get the point. We damage our bodies when we overwhelm so this is a great read for me and I definitely needed this. Now I’ll go shower and put on a face mask! Excuse me while I unplug and relax lol

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  6. I need to learn how to show up for myself first. I often put others before me 😏.

    Ps. Lol I wish I had the talent you have or writing! Love you 😘

    Like

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