WOW. Spoke to the Alexandria City Sheriff’s staff yesterday at their company retreat and all I can say is that we all owe a thank you to those that serve us in other ways. Yesterday was a day of gratitude for our veterans, I claim today as a day of gratitude for all of those in public service – you cannot imagine what they do and how difficult it can be. They worry about doing a good job, being the best they can be and making things better for those that come their way.
In my talk to them I stressed how important it is for those that give to take care of themselves. Don’t you find that you lose steam when you have given all that you can – whether it’s exercising until you can’t move anymore or working until you can’t keep your eyes open or doing chores around the house until you can hardly walk? It’s the same for our energy and the spiritual side of us – you have to refuel and fill up in order to give back out.
It seems we often think of this idea of doing for us or taking care of ourselves as selfish. I would offer that it’s anything but selfish, it’s our job and responsibility to nurture and take care of ‘us’ as part of the overall ‘management of you.’ Simply put, as my mentor Jim Rohn says, ‘If not now, then when? If not you, then who?’ and I would add ‘If not FOR you, then FOR who?’ —
Maybe the mystery is in the how. Maybe we all get stuck on this idea of grandeur when it’s really the small things that can lead us to the big. A fresh cup of coffee from your favorite shop, a five minute break to listen to some great music, a quick conversation with an old friend, a moment of gratitude for your thankful thought of the day, these are the tiny things that help start the process of taking care of you move forward If you do these small tasks to take care of you, you will build momentum in the art of doing for yourself. As you do this, the trip to the spa, the afternoon off to be free of responsibilities, the movie you decide to go see, the day hiking and going outside, all of these soul filling moments will come to you easily.
But you can really only give what you have left so make sure to do something for you, no matter how small. And if you are stuck on the idea that it’s not your right or that you feel selfish, move your perspective to the other side and remember that the selfish part is not taking care of you so you can in fact, give out.
The last thing I will leave you with is that please remember, give yourself a break, we are all just people, showing up, doing the best we can with what we’ve got. Hugs to you all.