I have always had a hard time putting me first. Most people I know have the same problem. We are so concerned about taking care of others, we often forget that we can’t help anyone else if we are running on empty.
Yes, it is admirable to always be of service to those in need and especially to those we love. But just like we are told on the plane, “Be sure to secure your own mask before assisting others.”
Saying “No”, “I can not”, or “I will not” always left me with huge amounts of guilt. Sacrificing my own schedule and feelings to appease a loved one was always at the top of the list. What I wanted or needed could be put at the end of the line because putting everyone else first makes me an amazing friend.
No. NO TO ALL OF THAT.
I have finally come to a point in my life where I HAVE to put myself first a lot of the time. There are some times a lot of the times where I do struggle with this but there are other things that I can make a “non-negotiable” for me to make sure I keep on track.
I have been consistent with making sure my morning routine is on point with every step checked off. I’ve learned to not always be in a rush. I do what I need to do for the kids to get their morning going and I cherish the 10 minutes I set for MYSELF. I throw on some music and do every step of my skin care. I take my time putting on every serum that can keep me looking clean and Cullen and slather every moisturizer that can keep me glowing for the gods. A Gua Sha is a FA SHO. It keeps the blood flowing and it’s such a great little face massage to start off the day!
I limit the amount of times I cancel on myself. There have been times where someone has invited me to a last minute coffee date or a lunch during a scheduled workout or during a time I set aside to read. Those things may seem unimportant to others but it’s not just the act of working out or reading, it’s me intentionally choosing an activity that I know fills my cup. I will be much better company on the next coffee run or lunch date once I bring myself some joy.
I still have a lot of work to do but I am finding opportunities to offer some peace and happiness for my mind and my soul. If I pride myself in being a ride or die for my people, I must remember to offer the same energy to myself. Love me.
Since I have been going through so much in the last few years, I have been trying to make a conscious decision to implement activities in my daily routines that bring me joy. I have to do this to keep my spirits up and my mental above water. One of those things are getting back into reading. In 2022, I was able to dive into 7 books. I know that may not seem like a lot to some but it was a whole lot for me compared to the recent years of racking up 0 books.
I love finding articles or following book club posts to find new reads so I thought I’d share some that I got into and especially share the ones that absolutely grabbed me in and got me obsessed with the story and it’s characters. When real life is a struggle, who doesn’t like free falling into a hardcover and doing snow angels in it’s pages?!
People We Meet on Vacation | Emily Henry I loved this book. I enjoyed going on the journey with both characters from when they met to the book’s present day. It was funny. It was romantic. It was spicy. Took me a day to read. I just could not put it down!
Book Lovers | Emily Henry Another book I devoured. It was a bit slow at the very beginning but picked up pretty quickly soon after. If you love Hallmark movies, you will LOVE this book.
It Ends With Us | Colleen Hoover If you know what #booktok is, it made Colleen Hoover books go hella viral and that goes especially for this book in particular. Strong start. Strong middle. Strong end. I absolutely loved this book. It absolutely was not all sunshine and rainbows but the story will suck you in. This is one of my favorite books from Colleen Hoover so far. Fun fact: A movie is in the works!
Reminders of Him | Colleen Hoover This book – couldn’t put it down. This took me a day to read. I felt pins and needles in my heart the whole time reading. It was so good.
Verity | Colleen Hoover Another one day read for me. A. Lot. Of. Gasping. It was just too crazy to put down! I needed to know what happened next. If you like suspense and spice, this one’s for you!
I don’t like celebrating February 14th much because it just isn’t one of my favorite celebrations. But whenever February rolls around, I do have a little tradition I have with the boys.
It all started in February 2019, Kole was 8 and Monroe was 4. I surprised the boys with a little note each day from February 1st through February 14th.
I would cut pieces of different colored cardstock into hearts and wrote little notes on them. I would write little things that told them what I love about them and every night, for 14 nights, I would tape the heart shaped notes on the wall for them to find and read in the morning. To my surprise, they were just as happy and excited finding the notes as they are about opening up gifts on Christmas Eve night.
That year, we ended up keeping the notes up all year round. As the seasons changed and the next February 1st rolled around, the hearts were taken down only to make room for that year’s set of Love Notes.
The boys have a memory box that they keep each of the notes I wrote for them. It is only in this moment, that I am not going crazy over how much of hoarders they are. They never want to let go of anything! There are times I have to negotiate with them on items they can keep and what they MUST get rid of! Thankfully, these Love Notes are a non negotiable for them.
Alas, February 2023 is here and a whole new set of Love Notes with sweet somethings are ready to be written for them.