As women, it is our nature to give, nurture and protect yet, rarely do we offer ourselves the same in return. If we do, it’s usually out of ‘worn-to-the-bone’ retaliation – Damnit, I’m taking care of me today!, leaving us laden with more than a little guilt. Even though we give of ourselves by choice, who knew there’d be days like this, and so many of them?
Unbelievably, marriage and motherhood are not what’s wearing us down. When is the last time you’ve felt rested? Not just because you woke up in the morning, but rejuvenated? Even with all that we do as wives and mothers, it’s what we’re not doing that’s got us beat. Yep, once AGAIN it’s our fault. But, suppose the adage is true, that a woman is no good to anyone if not good to herself first?
This fall, I plan to follow nature’s remedy and shake loose this dead tree to ready myself for renewal. I doubt that I’ll be making any less To Do lists, especially with the holiday season right around the corner, but I do plan to schedule time for myself on the next one.
For each of the 12 weeks of autumn, challenge yourself to do something in honor of yourself. Turn over a new leaf. Or two, or three!
A few reNEWal To Dos on my list:
1. Clear a day and re-schedule it for yourself. Reminder: Say ‘NO’ in bold caps.
2. Read a book (a whole book) or a banned book.
3. Call out your blessings. Make a collage of your wildest dreams and watch one of them bear fruit. You might be reminded of what YOU like to do.
4. Make one green change. Walk, bike or rollerblade to the neighborhood store or coffee shop. Reusable grocery bags…I’m HOOKED!
5. Build something. Fix something. If it’s only a puzzle, put something together. Appreciate the process and in the end your skill.
6. Write a letter or send a card rather than a quick email.
7. Be the first to say, Hello or Good Morning.
8. Join a group or take a class you’ve been curious about.
9. Take a nap.
10. Schedule a mammogram, PAP, wellness exam – the whole SHEbang.
11. Go it alone – spa day, dinner and a movie, a walk – enjoy your own company.
12. Do something so not you: try false eyelashes or go Brazilian!
13. Say, “I love you” to YOU!