I grew up thinking that being a mom meant putting all of your needs and desires aside until, well, forever. While I do believe there’s no greater nor worthwhile job than being a mother, I feel as though we’re doing our families and our communities a massive disservice if we don’t give ourselves what our bodies, spirits, and minds need as well. I talk about the importance of self-care quite a bit. It’s one of the secrets to finding true love and attracting your soul mate.
Always putting the needs of everyone else in front of your own feeds this belief that you are not enough and you’re not doing enough.
Putting everyone’s needs ahead of my own fuels that feeling that I’m not being enough. I used to be plagued with this feeling of not being enough and doing for my kids. And, I instinctively knew that if I wanted to attract more love and joy into my life, I had to create love and joy in my everyday life.
If you want to attract more love and joy into your life, you must create more love and joy in your life.
What I didn’t realize was that practicing self-care actually helps you grow your self-worth and self-esteem. What’s the number one thing you can do to attract someone into your life that cares for your well-being above all else? Care for your well-being. You grow your belief that you deserve a husband that cherishes you, adores you, and cares for you by caring for your own well-being.
Body, mind, and spirit. The more I practiced self-care, the more I believed that I deserved an amazing husband. The more I nurtured my body, mind and spirit, the less overwhelmed I felt being a single mom. The more I allowed myself to take time and do the things that I needed to do to feel good, the more I felt energized to be present and play with my kids. I put all my energy and focus into becoming the type of person that I wanted to marry, and I decided that I wanted to marry someone with high energy, a big heart, who loves life and lives to its fullest, someone who loves to hike and do yoga and someone who is happy! If you want to attract someone who is happy, you need to get crystal clear on what makes you happy, and do them.
What ways can you create more happiness and joy in your current circumstances? I asked myself: What is it really that brings me happiness?And I made a list. Turns out it’s all self-care. Self-care can create more joy and happiness in our lives right now no matter what our current circumstance? You bet your ass it can.
- I love to have pretty nails. Sounds stupid, right? I used to think: “You’re a single mom, you have kids to raise, you don’t need to be spending extra money and time going to the nail salon.” Well, I disagree with that thinking now. I spent 40 years biting my nails to the quick. My dad used to get after me, he used to put the nasty stuff on my nails to try and get me to stop. He told my sister that one time he got after me hard about biting my nails that I developed a stutter! I don’t even remember that – but he immediately stopped and never said anything about it after that. Obviously, it’s a nervous habit and I was nervous as a kid, I know a lot of us are as children. But looking down at short stubby bitten nails makes me feel ashamed of a habit I couldn’t quit, so getting manicures and nails painted helped make me feel happy when I looked at my hands. I no longer had to hide my fingers when I took pictures, and it makes me smile. I think I already wrote about this once because I remember typing something similar, painted pretty nails makes me smile a little. Puts a little pep in my step. You know that feeling when you get a new pair of pants or a dress that fits you perfectly and you put them on and feel just a little extra pep when you walk? Notice those things that make you feel that way, and do them as much as possible.
- Find any small thing you could do to serve someone – help someone – any little thing. Helping someone else helps take your mind off of yourself and your own problems. Seeing someone else smile because of a little thing you did boosts your self-esteem, and that feeling is the good kind of addictive. My genius sister Marilyn asked one year if we gave gifts to the people who serve us (such as those who deliver our mail or pick up our garbage). I had never thought of doing that before. So, I got a few little gifts together for them and waited for the sound of the garbage truck coming down the street. We grabbed the gift and my daughter and I ran out to the truck and handed it to the man driving the truck – and I’ll never forget his face. He couldn’t believe we were giving him a gift! What a thrill! It was so fun. We said thank you and Merry Christmas!!!
- I started taking efforts to take care of my body and be kind to my body. Are you so sick of being mean to yourself and punishing yourself? I used to go to the gym as punishment for what I ate and drank the night before. I was always punishing myself for being less than perfect, but doing that will only attract more suffering into your life. I know. I did it over and over. Then, I made a shift, and I started focusing on just self-care. I changed the focused from doing exercise just so I would be desirable and worthy of true love to taking care of my body. Doing things that helped my body. Doing things that nourished my body. I love to hike and I love to do yoga -I’ve said many times – the best part about moving your body and taking care of your body is that you are healing your mind at the same time – even though you don’t realize it. As Rachel Hollis says: move your body, change your mind.
- Speaking of the mind, self-care of the mind, I think, looks a little different for each of us, but what helped me the most was taking quiet time to read. I’m working on assembling a resource section on my website and will list all the books I’ve read that helped me immensely. And I also would take breaks from self-help and read novels, too. I loved the Hunger Games series so much I read all three books in less than a week. That’s self-care! Getting lost in another world and reading a book just for the joy of it! Enjoy reading now because there’s so little time to read now that I have a partner. I don’t want to sit and ignore him during our precious time together. I want to be present with him, so I hardly read books anymore. I listen to podcasts and books on tape while I drive or workout. So, enjoy your alone time doing the things you need for yourself! Now we read to each other – which is fantastic. It’s still wonderful to read a book and unplug from all our screens as much as possible, Even if it’s 10 minutes before bed each night. Helps you sleep better!
- Spirit- I think our spirit needs us the most. OK, I think I say that about everything. Everything is the most important thing! Our heart can be healed when we heal our spirit. Mama, divorce sucks, I know. Our hearts get split open over and over again. We feel like failures. I failed my marriage, I failed my kids, I failed financially – I lost my home, I went bankrupt, I lost my car, and I felt like a complete and utter hopeless failure in all respects of life. Yet, I also knew that so many people had been through the same thing during the recession. It was so hard on all of us. Thousands of people lost their homes and jobs. I remember walking by my co-worker’s office and he had just found out that a friend of his who had lost his home and job had died by suicide, leaving his wife and three kids without a husband and father. And it hit me that I’ve got to dig out from underneath this feeling and false belief that I failed. It’s just money. I can always find a way to make money and pay the bills no matter what, and this is not something to be in deep depression about. I wanted to be there for my kids and I needed to show up for them – that mean healing my heart and spirit so I didn’t feel like a failure. One thing I found that made me feel better was this Christian church close to my home. The speakers were so gifted and the message were so powerful, I always left there feeling better than when I arrived. I also started singing again at an Episcopal Church. I had stopped singing there when I got married the first time so I could be home on Sundays, but I desperately missed my choir family and the music. The kids loved to go because there were lots of treats and a playground to keep them busy while I was singing during the services each morning. Sunday morning church turned into a ritual for us. They could play, watch moves and eat popcorn, and I got to sing. And I even got paid for it which was astonishing to me. When I was in college, I saw a little sign on a bulletin board in the hallway that said “alto section leader wanted” with a phone number on it. I called and talked to the choir director, and he asked me to come up to practice, and that would be an audition. I had no idea what to expect, and I had only been to a Catholic church once. I had no idea that people got paid to sing in a choir. I’ve been reading music since I could read the alphabet, and I’d been singing in choirs since about that same time! Someone will pay me to come here and sing music? Sure enough. I was a church musician for two decades. I couldn’t believe my luck.
Mamas, the things we do and focus on can drain our soul or fill it up. They can heal our mind or they can make us feel even worse. If we can find things that heal us little by little, we feel as though we are healed, we feel as though we are whole. We feel as though we deserve a whole, healed man that enhances our lives and takes care of us, but in order to find love after divorce, we have to find reasons to fall in love again with ourselves. If we want to attract someone that we love, we trust, and we respect, we have to find ways to love ourselves, trust ourselves, and respect ourselves, which means taking care of that precious body, mind and spirit of ours. That means by giving ourselves the things that we yearn for our future partner to give us, we are showing the universe that we deserve care. The more you care for yourself, the more you believe that we deserve care and love.
At the last Single mom group meeting, the question from everyone was: “Why do we attract men like this? (egotistical, narcissist, liars, emotional abusers, etc.) and there’s only one answer ladies: Lack of self-worth. We have to focus on healing and growing our self-worth, and I promise that self-care is the way we do that. You deserve to get a massage, you deserve to take time for just yourself. You deserve 20 minutes in a hot bath without interruption. You deserve to get a pedicure. You deserve to go for a walk and be in nature for a half hour. You deserve to read that book that has been on your bedside table for two years. You don’t have to be a slave to your kids and nothing else. You don’t have to be a martyr. And, PS, you will be a better mom and a better wife if you are already cared for and loved by YOU.
Wishing you lots of love xoxoxoxoxo