By Nicci Johnson
I truly believe that self-care is a sacred act of service to those around us. But, I didn’t always have that kind of mentality.
So how did I get there? By being honest about where I’m at, open-minded about learning something new, and willing to do something different than I’ve always done to get a different result.
I’ve learned that the way that we grow up creates our belief system. I grew up in a dysfunctional home; my parents were divorced and they both struggled with substance abuse. I was the youngest, the forgotten child, and grew up with the mindset that I was unlovable and unworthy of a good life.
These beliefs reflected on my relationships growing up. I pushed people away, was controlling, and had a victim mentality. I did not know how to love myself. I looked for love in many different forms: numerous broken relationships and unhealthy relationships with food, drugs, and alcohol.
It wasn’t until I got sober seven years ago that my relationship with self-care and self-love began. I entered a program where people loved me until I could love myself. I learned that it’s my responsibility to take care of myself to be able to show up for those around me, and to love myself in these healthy ways:
Honesty I wake up in the morning and I get real with myself. Where is my heart? Where is my mind? I have to be honest about where I’m at in order to feel grateful for what I have. So, I write a gratitude list in the morning, whether it’s big or small, there’s always something to be grateful for.
Open-mindedness Part of self-care is being self-aware. There are things that block blessings. Some of those are — and not limited to — pride, ego, manipulation, lies, and fear. Fear is a manifestation of a ton of roadblocks that keep us from moving up to the next level in life. Once I become aware of things that block me from moving forward, I pray, ask God to remove those defects of character and become willing to do something different. Which leads me to the last part …
Willingness to change If nothing changes, then nothing changes. I have to make a decision every single day to make a change. I did this in my recovery one day at a time. And, I can do that with everyday life as well. It’s a no-brainer, if you want different results, you have to do something differently. If your system is broken, why keep running in circles? Fear of change? Fear of stepping out of your comfort zone?
When I follow these three rules, I find clarity and peace, and most importantly self love. My word for 2020 is action. Join me and make the choice today to take action — do something different with your life. It’s time. Now is my time. Now is your time, too! Love yourself enough to go for your dreams; it’s your birthright. Your future self will thank you.