I have spent a lot o' my career working with girlkind helping them to dig on their sweet selves, but in an interview last week, when the interviewer asked me 'so Lisa, how can we love ourselves in order for our lives to be better?' - a question I've answered a whole lot of times - I checked in my with my big, beat-y heart and said:
'If we want our life to be better, it's not about loving ourselves, it's about showing up in our most glorious messy, complicated imperfect way.'
Now, at the risk of undoing pretty much my entire life work by saying 'so you know how I've been telling you that life becomes sweeter when you love yourself? Tuns out that's bullshit,' I need to preface this whole blog post/convo with the following statement: digging on yourself is awesome. Fact.
It's just that...well, that shit's not easy.
Especially when we live in a world where we've been conditioned to compare ourselves to others, we're shown that successful people are pretty and shiny and have just-stepped-out-of-a-salon-hair. We're fed fabulous soundbites by Oprah's new generation of spiritual thought leaders - Gabrielle Bernestein, Marie Forleo and Mastin Kipp - who are all are super shiny, successful glossy types who's work I absolutely, positively dig, but they feel like the spiritual equivalent of the too-cool-for-school clique who I used to avoid at school.
You see, after studying this self-love lark for pretty much my entire life, before you start to love yourself, you have to like yourself and to like yourself, you need to really be able to hold your hands up, be vulnerable and know yourself, dark and light, inside and out, and be able to admit that you eat an entire bowl of Angel's Delight in one sitting or that sometimes you make big ugly eye water, the kind where you do snot bubbles through your nostrils because...well, you just do. You're not perfect and that's totally okay.
My gorgeous gal-pal Tamarisk wrote a feature last week about the new, much-talked about phenomenon o' self-care, and how there's a not-so-subtle undercurrent that self-care is basically eating well, exercising, saying positive affirmations and having the odd bubble bath. Now, don't get it twisted, it IS about those things but it's about SO much more than that too. Tamarisk points out that self-care is about making decisions that are actually FOR the self, knowing your boundaries, what feels good and what doesn't. High fives to that, sweet thing.
There are times when I want to put off going to yoga because I'm too tired/have too much work to do/don't feel like it - delete as applicable - sometimes I don't want to write because I'm waiting for the muse, except the muse doesn't come and I've written zilcho wordage, but do you know what? I show up anyway. Last year, I was asked to do a presentation to a global company about self-esteem and self-love, I shit myself. I thought of a gazillion ways to get out of it, but I created the presentation, put on my pretty pink dress and some ridiculously over-sized accessories and showed up anyway. (In case you were wondering, it was awesome, and they've asked me back this year - hurrah!) Last week I didn't have any clean yoga clothes to wear to yoga, so instead of making my excuses and not going, I went in my PJ's because they were clean. True story.
'Show up anyway' is my mantra.
You should make it yours too. In writing, in yoga, in life.
I ask all my writer-girl clients to make a writing date with themselves every single day even if it's just for 10 minutes. To simply sit down, open up a notebook, or their laptop and simply write. Y'see, in order for inspir-o to strike, or for the muse to come visit, or for the universe to conspire to bring you awesomeness, you need to show up. If you're at your computer typing from your heart, or on your mat in baby pose, or simply out from under your duvet where you'd quite like to have hidden for the forseeable future, opportunities will arise, lesson will be learned and a fuller, sweeter life will be lived, which ultimately, will make loving yourself a whole lot easier. Cool, huh?
Life is beautiful, complicated, messy and fabulous. In equal and unequal measures depending on the time, your mood, your hormone cycle, the moon, what song played on the radio this morning.
Show up anyway, I dare you.
When writer-girl’s write together, awesomeness of the very best kind occurs, so if you want to write YOUR book and tell your story in 2013 – show up, join me and a girl-gang of writer-girl rockstars for Write The Freakin’ Book: Group Jam - you can register your place now.
If you’d prefer a li’l alone time with me, unfortunately, the Write The Freakin’ Book: 1 to 1 are now fully booked up until mid-Jan 2013 – there is a wait list, so if you’d like to sign up, please email me: Lisa@sassyology.com I do however, have You + Me = Book Writing Badass-ery sessions available through December, so If you want super-charged clarity about your idea, where and how to publish or would like your own YOU-nique pink-print to writer-girl success, sign up now.