Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Reflections on Healing: Empowerment Through Self-Appreciation.

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Now that it is getting close to the beginning of February I am gearing up to do a "14 day Challenge of Self Appreciation" in the days leading up to Valentines Day.  

Last year I took the first step towards this by writing myself a love letter.  Today I re-read this letter, and it is amazing how that made me feel!  

As I read it, I also realized that so many of the healing moments that I have experienced in the past year are a direct reflection of the thoughts and ideas I had written to myself last year at this time!  I was amazed once again about the power of the unconscious mind and how it has directed me based on the thoughts I gave it to work with.

I have always been successful at giving my love to others.  But I have been very poor at giving myself love, validation and appreciation for everything that I do and everything that I am.  I have always been the first person to beat on myself for not being good enough.  And in the process I gave others the impression that they too could beat on me.  My resolution in my healing journey has been to change this. 

Slowly I have been changing this pattern in myself and I hope that in sharing my journey with you, you too can start to create a transformation in your life.

Being estranged robbed me of so much.  I have stated before, that I felt I had no value, that I was worthless.  At my lowest point in the aftermath of estrangement, I had no self-esteem left.  Zero! I caught myself walking hunched over, like I was trying to shrink from view.  I never smiled, and if my lips formed a smile because it was required of me in a social context I felt tears in my eyes because I felt “fake”.  All hope and all joy, all exuberance were gone from my heart and I felt defeated. I have talked elsewhere about the decision I arrived at to “choose a new path”.

February 2014, I came across this article about writing a love letter to myself.  The writing of this letter was an empowering moment.  I then followed up by creating a list of 14 days of Valentines to myself.   And I have to admit that I failed in that exercise.  I had the list but every day I found an excuse why I did not deserve to do this nice thing for myself.

So this year I am going to repeat the exercise.  This year I know I am in a much better place.  I care more about me and therefore I nurture myself more.  I show myself more compassion. So I have every hope and intension to make this a successful exercise to show myself appreciation and to reward myself for how far I have come on my healing journey since last February.

I invite you to join me in the 14 Days of Love Challenge

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1.  Write yourself a love letter:  how to instructions can be found here .  

Place it somewhere safe and reread it next year and be prepared to be amazed. 

2.  Create a list of “14 days of kindness for me”! These are simple actions that I can take that express value and appreciation of who I am and what I have accomplished.  From having a coffee outing with a friend, to visiting a museum or enjoying a favorite piece of music.  The idea is to do an activity I enjoy with the intention of seeing it as validating that I deserve good things.  Fill in a 14 day calendar with intentions. 

Feb 1st
Feb 2nd
Feb 3rd
Feb 4th
Feb 5th
Feb 6th
Feb 7th
Day 1 of Kindness to me
Day 2 of Kindness to me
Day 3 of Kindness to me
Day 4 of Kindness to me
Day 5 of Kindness to me
Day 6 of Kindness to me
Day 7 of Kindness to me

Feb 8th
Feb 9th  
Feb 10th
Feb 11th  
Feb 12th  
Feb 13th
Feb 14th
Day 8 of Kindness to me
Day 9 of Kindness to me
Day 10 of Kindness to me
Day 11 of Kindness to me
Day 12 of Kindness to me
Day 13 of Kindness to me
Day 14 of Kindness to me

If you are like me, and you are used to your life revolving around what you do for others you may find this challenge to be very challenging!  

I struggled to create that list last year and I struggled even more to do the things on the list.  I look forward to having greater success this year!

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 3. Create a self-appreciation or self-validating ritual that I can turn always to, to reaffirm my healing journey.  This is a collection of thoughts / meditations, reading materials, music, home spa ideas, prayers or intentions, aroma therapy, peaceful corner that I have always close at hand.   The idea is to create an oasis ritual that I have access to whenever I need to nurture myself.  An example for a place to start. 

Let us celebrate Valentine’s Day this year with not only sharing love with others but also by remembering to love and validate ourselves!

Please feel free to share your successes with me!
Renate Dundys Marrello
2014 – 01 – 27 

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