Saturday, February 7, 2015

Can I Get a Little Love???

If your mother did not know how to love herself, or your father did not know how to love himself, then it would be impossible for them to teach you to love yourself. They were doing the best they could with what they had been taught as children.

THAT statement speaks volumes to those of us who continue to self sabotage throughout our lives. So, what comes after we realize and embrace the fact that our parents were ill equipped to teach us how to love ourselves? What are some things that can move us down the path of self-love and acceptance? We are obviously on our own in this venture so let's explore some options for healthier living through loving ourselves. Let's attempt to figure out how the hell to do that after years spent mistreating ourselves, shall we?

#1- What the Fuck Are You Eating???

Seriously, what are you putting into that body of yours? Chemically processed foods, GMOs, refined sugar. Nope...not good, my friends, especially if, like me, you suffer from depression. When I eat well, I feel well not just physically, but emotionally, too.

At times when I fall into a funk I've been known to binge eat junk food-McDonald's, Taco Hell, donuts, candy bars and my personal favorite: French cream horns (I live for them!)

Sugar absolutely destroys my sanity! I mean that wholeheartedly. Nothing can push me further down the rabbit hole faster than a few days of shoveling processed sugar and empty carbs into my body. It's a vicious circle you can get trapped in and it is UGLY!

I have to STOP, get a grip and gently explain to my strung-out self that I am single-handedly making my depression that much worse. Loving yourself means you are willing to make proper decisions when it comes to nourishing your physical and mental states of being. CHOOSING to feed your body well is a vital step towards learning to show yourself love. Your body and mind will thank soooo many ways!!

Nutritious Foods to Help Fight Off Depression

#2- Shake That Thang

9 Health Benefits of Dance by Madeline Knight
1) Boosts memory
2) Improves flexibility
3) Reduces stress
5) Helps your heart
6) Lose weight
7) Balance better
8) Increased energy
9) Make friends

I've always been one who enjoyed dancing since I was a toddler. I am certainly not claiming to do it well, but who cares when you love something...DO IT!!
Getting up and moving can be a grueling challenge when you are all funkified and blue, feeling like civilization would be better off without your sorry excuse for a human being. I am here to tell you that if you can drag yourself off that damn sofa that your ass has been glued to for days, turn on some music you love and just start slowly shaking your groove thang, I PROMISE your depression will diminish. Dance, be depressed, repeat!

Play this video...I dare you to not start grooving along. 
Oh, know you love Abba!! lol

#3- Let's Make Some New Friends

Listen, the very last thing on our minds when we find ourselves locked in yet another battle with our depression is finding and making friends! OK, I totally get that, but self isolating is making the sitch that much worse for us, so what can we do about this? I had to do some serious thinking on this one because most of the suggestions I've read to date truly were lame. Sorry, I'm not looking to join depression anonymous or a church group. Hey, if it works for you then God bless, but neither are my thing...sorry, just being honest here.

I'm thinking more along the lines of really sitting with yourself and getting tuned into what your interests are. Not just activities or hobbies you may already excel at, but shit that you absolutely suck doing. Nothing bonds two people faster than bowling three straight games of gutter balls or admiring your pottery ashtrays that were actually meant to be vases! What brings people together more than being able to laugh at themselves??? AND those are EXACTLY the type of friends we need.

Just sign up for a class and then see what happens. Most of the depressed people I know are some of the funniest muthas I've ever met so you should have no problem making friends. The real challenge here is going to be making yourself actually ATTEND these classes on the regular and that's where this love yourself thing comes into play-
Ask yourself this question:
"Do I want to get better or do I choose to spend the rest of my days in this foggy, sullen haze?"
If you answered yes to the getting better part: sign up for something, ANYTHING right now! No one cares if you miss half the classes. I'm still giving you an "A" for effort, pals!!

Oh, and if you decided you'd be better off staying in your depressed state, well you are probably going to remain friendless for a while. lol
You'll get there, eventually.
C'mon, show yourself some damn LOVE already!!

#4- Fill That Brain of Yours With New/Old Ideas
So we are eating healthy, dancing, taking classes and making all sorts of new acquaintances....what next? What should we do now? How about some old fashioned thinking?

Depression has a way of knocking us off our original life plan. We get slammed around by the illness and lose our way. That's just how it is, comes with the depression package, no worries...if you are still here, there's still time to get back on track.

Try to recall your passions (I KNOW this is no easy task, trust me) and begin to pursue them again. Baby steps and know this is a loving thing to do for yourself. Let joy slowly return to your life.

#5- Why Do You Continue to Work at a Job You Loathe?

Ugh. I'm facing this dilemma as we speak, readers!
A paycheck? Health insurance? Being capable of paying the bills on your own? Sheer terror of being unemployed??

I really don't know why many of us waste so many years stuck in jobs that make us ill almost on a daily basis. My job stresses me the eff out. I want out desperately. I think I'm loving myself enough to make this happen, BUT not without a solid plan and that does not come together over night.

I am currently giving this much thought and consideration. As we age we naturally question what our current state of affairs is doing to prepare ourselves for future happiness.

***How do we set ourselves up to be comfortable and yet at the same time at peace? I welcome your opinions as well as your story on how you personally have made the transition from job-you-hate to I-love-what-I-do.***

I conclude this exploration on self love by sending you my best wishes in finding and expressing the same always.

Hoping you enjoyed them!!

We can do this!!