self love

the power of saying no

A wise woman (Jacki Carr) once said to me, "Your yes is only as powerful as your no." At this exact moment, the figurative light bulb floating above my head flickered on with so much force that it nearly shattered into a million tiny pieces. This was a total game changer for me, you guys. Since that fateful moment, I've been doing a lot of thinking and reflecting on the subject of yes and no.

Stemming from my "real" post on how I'm a people pleaser, I've started to notice that yes gets a thrown around a lot, many times willy nilly if you know what I mean. Yes to this, yes to that, yes to everything. This gif sums up my relationship with yes:

You get a yes! And you get a yes! And you get a yes! Everyone gets a yes!

And then I find myself stretched thin, committing to things I have no desire to do or that I want to do I just plain don't have the time for. And then come the maybes. And then come the cancellations. And inevitably then comes guilt following up the pack and inspiring shame and insecurity to step up to the plate as well. It's a nasty little cycle - a hamster wheel I've been stuck on for far too long. And then, worst of all, my yes becomes untrustworthy and pretty much useless. This is no bueno, man. No bueno at all.

It's not because I'm a flake, at least not intentionally. It's either because a.) I want to and I want to connect with you, or b.) I don't want to but I want to connect with you. Does that make sense? It has become a second nature for me to spit out a yes, rather than standing behind what I truly want and need - which might be next week rather than this week, yoga instead of pilates (pilates? oh hell no, I thought you said PIE and LATTES!) or an extra hour of sleep rather than an early AM coffee date.

For me, what this comes down to is twofold: my willingness to say yes when I really mean no is first and foremost me not being able to unapologetically step into who I am, what I want, and what I need; it's also about balance - which is something I've always struggled to create for myself. I've always believed that If I'm not running from one thing to the next, perpetually exhausted and hustling, then I'm not doing it right. Well, that's a whole other story to be discussed, but let's just leave it at no, it doesn't have to be like that.

So, I've been experimenting with saying no. I'm trying it on here and there, and I'm surprisingly starting to like it. I still throw out a yes or a maybe every now and then when I shouldn't, but I'm only human.

I'm starting to fall in love with the fact that there are little to no residual feelings leftover after a hearty no like there are after an uncertain yes or an half-hearted maybe. There's clarity's and satisfaction in knowing my no is helping to create space for "fuck yes" - which as you know I am all about as of late.

With that being said, try not to take it personally next time you get a hard no from me. It's not you, it's all me baby. Know that next time you get a yes it means I'm all in and ready to rock.

self love

Yep. Self love. I need A LOT more of that in my life. (No, not that kind. I know at least some of you went there.)

Self love is a term that I've come to be very familiar with throughout my journey into yoga and from following some of the brightest and most compassionate yogis like Jacki Carr and Mary Beth LaRue. Although it's something I've been hearing for years and is always at the back of my mind, it's something that I've never put into practice.

I've found that, like many other things, self love is a lot easier said than done--at least for me. Brace yourself, because I'm going to be awkwardly, brutally, terribly honest: I don't love myself. I really, really don't. I can never live up to the standards I set for myself and nothing I ever do is good enough. Quite honestly, I could go on forever: I'm not pretty enough, I'm not thin enough, I'm not funny enough, I'm not smart enough, I'm simply not enough--not for myself, not for anyone. Well, shit. What good does this kind of thinking do me? Absolutely none at all.

The turning point? Taking a moment to slow down and think about the past several months and realizing that I wasn't proud of myself for graduating college or moving to Aspen. Wtf? I've gotten to the point where I'm not satisfied with ANYTHING that I do, and these are definitely things that anyone else would and should be ecstatic about.

What's the root of this problem? Looking for happiness in others--which, as it turns out, isn't a sustainable way to be happy. It's actually exhausting, fleeting and ultimately just makes me miserable. Not to say that others can't and don't contribute to my happiness, but true happiness is something that I have to find within myself and allow myself to have.

Well, enough with all of these fucking not-enoughs. I'm more than ready to be happy and, even though it pains me to say it, I deserve it. I do.

It's a slow process--definitely baby steps--but I'm learning that it's OK to be happy with myself, to be proud of something that I did or that I created. I'm trying to teaching myself that I won't burst into flames if I acknowledge myself for something I did. Being happy with myself doesn't inherently make make me conceited, it doesn't make me smug, it doesn't make me selfish. It just makes me happy.

With that said, here's a little test run on self love: I acknowledge myself not only for being vulnerable (which is another thing I'm currently working on 'cause no one likes talking to a brick wall, right?) and writing down my darkest, innermost feelings in this post, but also for the fact that I'm taking time to write, which is something that is in my goals and is extremely important to me, but not always a priority.

Boom. I did it.

Cheers to self love, guys. Peace 'n blessings.