Week 5 – Treats For Yourself…
This is our final week in the series “Accepting and Finding Comfort in YOU” and we thought it would be a good idea to end this with ‘Treats For Yourself.’ But first to recap, in Week 1 we spoke about Finding Comfort In Who You Are. In Week 2 we talked about Caring Less What They Think. In Week 3 we discussed having LOVE For The Haters. And last week we wanted to know if you were down with O.P.P., other people’s perceptions or Are You Down With Y.P.P.? YOUR personal perceptions? So to add the proverbial cherry on top, today we will discuss “Treats For Yourself” to round out Accepting and Finding Comfort in YOU.
Treats come in various ways. I know people who like simple things such as aroma therapy and are ‘treated’ when they can sit in a calming environment with soothing smells, relaxing music and calming light. And I have friends on the opposite spectrum who find tranquility in retail therapy. They can spend hours at the mall shopping in the hustle and bustle and that is where they find peace. Others, like myself, find peace and calm in the pleasure of something sweet. My personal favorite treat is a bowl of Jamocha Almond Fudge ice cream from Baskin Robbins. I am THOROUGHLY pleased, calm, happy and tranquil when Jamocha Almond Fudge is a part of my life experience. LOL…
What is your one ‘treat trigger’ that makes all things right in your world? A concert? A bubble bath? Time with a loved one? A walk outside in the sunshine? Rocking out to your favorite band? A glass of chardonnay? A great meal? A long deep-tissue massage? What is your ‘treat trigger?’ And how do you feel when you engage that treat? Does it make you happy? Joyful? Blissful? Do you enjoy your treat often? Most of us engage with our treats quite rarely as opposed to frequently. We suggest treating yourself often and we will show you why.
We have been conditioned and socialized to believe that ‘treating’ should only happen as a reward for some behavior or accomplishment. And there is value in using treats as rewards. No question. But there is also value in providing those rewards more frequently. ESPECIALLY to ourselves. This is all suggested in an effort to give more LOVE, attention and compassion to US.
In the rat races we all run, we often forget to take the time to simply LOVE on ourselves. We tend to be caught up in satisfying the spouse, the children, the boss, the neighbors, the dog, the parents, the siblings, the stranger we don’t know; and we satisfy ourselves as an afterthought. Or, even if we don’t subscribe to satisfying others first, we still do not offer the love and attention to ourselves in the most fulfilling of ways most times. Providing love, compassion, thoughtfulness, comfort, peace and non-judgment to ourselves should be our number one priority. While this may seem selfish, I encourage you to answer the question: How can I bring happiness to others without first being happy? Or better yet, how much easier is it to spread love, joy and compassion when you first feel it within yourself?
Loving ourselves FIRST is the best way to love others. However, we often lean towards being hard, judgmental and critical of ourselves more than we are towards others. We scold, guilt-trip and chastise from within and that is what comes out. We ALL know people who seem to live a life of misery. Everything is always wrong. Life is ‘hard.’ Pessimism runs rampant. We ALL know this grumpy, hateful person. The authentic reality is, that person acts that way because they continually scold, guilt-trip and chastise THEMSELVES from within. Therefore what we see on the outside is a true reflection of what they feel on the inside. We cannot bake a cake without the ingredients. In other words, we can only produce that which we have access to.
If I continuously judge myself harshly, like many of us do, then I will also judge all that is around me just as harshly. If I am constantly self-assessing and determining that I am ‘wrong’ continuously, I will also pass along that same assessment to the people and things around me. “They’re just wrong. They act wrong, dress wrong, have wrong opinions…they’re just plain wrong.” But if I LOVE me, care for me, provide compassion for myself and my actions and my thoughts…I then learn forgiveness, empathy and kindness. And THAT is what I begin to offer to others around me. By offering myself concern and caring, I begin to grow in gentleness and kind-heartedness which also translates to how I approach the people, situations and circumstances in my life. When we LOVE on ourselves, taking the time to be emotionally intimate with ourselves, we begin to create a space of authentic happiness, joy, peace and contentment that is always sustained and never shaken. THIS is what ‘Treats For Yourself’ is all about. Not only ‘treating’ yourself to a bowl of ice cream or a trip to the mall, but also treating your emotions, thoughts, decisions, words, actions, etc. with love, compassion and non-judgment. You are a powerful spiritual being. BUT you are housed inside a human shell. Therefore, you WILL make unwise choices and decisions from time to time. TREAT yourself to a big bowl of love & forgiveness.
To wrap this series, Accepting and Finding Comfort in YOU, there are a few things we encourage you to try:
- Lose Judgment
Lose the judgment of yourself. The next time you self-assess, start with a feeling of divine love for who you are as a person. Whatever you consider as ‘flaws’ and all…simply love yourself in that space…right here and right now, JUST as you are. Pass no judgment of who you currently are versus who you desire to be.
- Decide Who You Are
Decide who you are for yourself and do not be defined by a label someone else has levied upon you. Simply decide on who you are for yourself. Decide on how you perceive yourself. Whatever you believe yourself to be, is exactly who you become. We all evolve, grow and change. Therefore, choose WHO you are and never mind the way others have labeled, perceived or known you from before.
- What Others Think of You Is None Of Your Business
Seeking to please others is similar to the Greek mythological character of Sysiphus. Sysiphus was charged with pushing a boulder uphill for eternity. This will be the same for you if you seek to gain acceptance of all those you come in contact with. The struggle will never end. There is no finish line in the race to satisfy the world. So to that end…do not devote endless emotion, investing in what others think of you. And do not try to always satisfy everyone else before you’ve satisfied yourself.
- Love EVERYONE, Even When They Seem to Hate You
By providing love to all, we actually create a space for more love to be realized. Not hate or discord. This Universe is a ‘feeling’ Universe and it is responding to what we feel at all times. When we choose to feel love, no matter the circumstance, the Universe responds in kind, providing us with what we all desire most…love. That same love creates a space of spiritual allowance. In the space of spiritual allowance our authentic desires are allowed to grow and ultimately manifest in our physical world. So, to get what you truly desire…start with love. And more specifically…start with the love of yourself.