Love Yourself Like It’s Nobody’s Business

flickr, Barney Moss

Cause it isn’t.

Anybody else’s business, that is.

Loving yourself is YOUR business. And, while certainly we can and are loved by other people, ultimately only we can be responsible for the love that comes and goes in our one beautiful life.

Love should not hurt. Well, okay, sometimes loving does hurt. But, in the main, love should add to our lives, not cause stress and anxiety.

Loving yourself means being responsible for yourself.  When you love yourself, you

* take care of yourself

* take care of your finances

* take care of your health

* take care of your beautiful heart.

It’s not always FUN to do some of this stuff. Facing your fear of your financial future, facing your sadness over what a lifetime of donuts has done to your hips is not fun. Facing the truth that certain people who are “supposed” to love you don’t seem to be acting that way — well, in truth, that one just kinda completely BITES.

But unless and until we stand in our own truth — our own UNADULTERATED TRUTH — seeking neither to minimize nor dramatize any of it — unless and until we do that —

Well, we can’t receive the kind of love that adds to our lives. If we are looking for love to fill the “hole in the soul” then we are living on empty emotional calories.

There’s no soulful nutrition in that.

If you lack the energy or incentive to move forward, it might be that you are filling up on this kind of near-beer of happiness.

So, love yourself. Do good for and by yourself.

Find your light and stand tall in its center.

Then, reach one hand to your right and one to your left. And grasp the love and support of your sisters who are making that same journey.

We are here. Right beside you.

Even now.

Love, Jen

p.s. We do a lot of cool stuff here at Life After Tampons. If you’d like to join our community, it’s completely painless. Just enter your info below.

photo: Flickr, Barney Moss

 

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The Curse of the Blinking Cursor

Sadie Hernandez, French Horn I’ve got a blinking cursor cursing before me.

It’s patiently waiting for me.

To move it across the page.

I’m pretty sure my cursor works out.

It never takes a break.

Not only that, but it blinks in perfect time with itself.

As for pace, it’s a little slower than you’d want to hear the end of the Overture from Wagner’s Tannhauser.  I don’t know what made me notice that, except that, as I was staring at it just now, I suddenly had a flashback to my high school band’s Spring concert, circa 1978.

And the French horns.

What did you do today?

 

Photo cred: Sadie Hernandez

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Great Expectations Set You Up to Fail

flickr, Marco Bellucci

The other day, one of our Reclaim the Sass challengers shared with the group about a tough time she was going through in the last two weeks. Her father is ill and in the hospital and, obviously, she isn’t really feelin’ the sass right now.

Because all of our Sassafrasians are amazing, someone else immediately sent love to her and said, “Since I started the challenge I have been exceptionally cranky and down and I have no real reason, just coming up against my self appointed limitations that keep me from my full sass expression. Trying to let myself flow through it to the other side with as much grace as possible.”

The first dozen or two times I tried to change myself I remember that, too. I remember starting all gung ho – “

Time 1: “Woo hoo, let’s buy those protein shakes and lose that belly fat.”

Time 2: “Woo Hoo, once I get my house/finances/fat butt back in shape I’m NEVER going to allow myself to get THIS BAD again.”

Time 472: “What’s the use? I never seem to stick with what I said I was gonna do. I give up.”

Well, “giving up” is probably the best thing you can do when you decide to Reclaim Your Sass.

The best possible place to be in when you begin anything of import is utter and complete surrender.

You surrender your expectations of how it’s going to go.

You surrender your expectations of how compliant and consistent you’re going to be able to be.

You surrender all ideas of what you think your mood should be like while you are going through this time of change.

Cause here’s the thing love —  It’s not really all that surprising to feel cranky, moody, and even depressed when you start out on the exciting journey of “this time I absolutely mean it, once and for all, I’m finally gonna do something about that thing that’s been bothering me like FOREVER and I’m gonna be so happy to finally have found someone to help me (that’s ME in this case) and a community of women (that’s Beautiful YOU in this case) that I’m just gushing with excitement and I imagine every day of this transformation to be completely filled with “aha” moments … and blah, and blah, and blah, and blah.

Cause the truth is you might actually feel kinda completely SH*TTY at the beginning.

You might have feelings of sadness and remorse that you waited so long.

You might have feelings of disappointment cause, once you get just the smallest way in to it, you realize that changing your life is a whole lot more complicated than you thought.

You may feel resentment that the people around you aren’t supporting you more. And, after all you’ve given them over the years, and they can’t, not even ONCE, be there for Beautiful You.

. . . . And, another thing . . . .

See what I mean?

When you make a commitment to make a commitment to yourself, all you’ve really done is state your commitment. The “going throughs” is a completely different thing altogether.

But that is no reason to feel glum. Further, you can completely LOWER your expectations of yourself in this way – you can’t expect yourself to be graceful at something the first time you do it.

Really, who does that?

Did Peggy Fleming look so hot the first time she laced up and risked the ice?

Did the principal of the New York Ballet pirouette the very first day at the barre?

Did Jennifer Boykin put together interesting and fun pieces the very first time she grabbed a pencil?

No way, Jose.

What we are doing here is creating a new life for ourselves – one day at a time. And the new life we are creating is, at first, a complete change to our interior world. The correct changes to our outer world will come from the understanding we get from understanding ourselves.

And, at first, we just can’t understand ourselves all the time. It takes practice, and love, and patience, and deep DEEP acceptance – both of self and of others.

So, if you are Challenging with us this month, or if you are just working through change on your own, I completely honor and commend your decision.

Just don’t sweat it if you’re a little bit grumpy and, from time to time you fall down on your beautiful behind.

Besides, it’s never the fall that matters. It’s the RISE.

Have fun. Make good choices.

Love, Jen

P.S. We are announcing new changes to our monthly reinvention program – Chapters – as of this morning. To learn more, visit our info site: Chapters

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It Was a Rough August

flickr, KT King

It was a tough August. I wasn’t prepared for how much I was going to miss my second son who left for his freshman year at University.

But, it was more than that. I just didn’t feel right in my body. When I first thought about it, I figured I hadn’t felt right for a couple of weeks or so. But now, I knew it was much longer.

As it turns out, depression returned, and while it’s been out on leave it’s been WORKING OUT. This is one tough dude that’s got ahold of me!

Please let me protect myself and most of my readers by making this request: As much as I care about you and I know you care about me, please DO NOT fill today’s comment section with your stories or treatments for depression. But I’d love to hear about how you are living successfully with whatever challenges are before Beautiful You.

The last thing I want to do is accidentally transform Life After Tampons into the site for depressed older women. We have to be vigilant when we talk about our struggles here. Otherwise, we might accidentally slip into living in the problem rather than the answer.

We have to protect ourselves from that.

Because we are so much more that that – we are so much more than ANY of the challenges before us.

Because we are WOMEN WHO RISE!

That’s right. Old, young, with or without tampons, with children or without, from the under- or upper-class (whatever the hell that means), with a man, with a woman, with several of each – no matter what, “We Are Women Who Rise!”

And so, while we may individually face great challenges, we have to remember not to forget that there is always ONE PLACE we can come and seek strength, solutions, and hope.

And that place is right here at Life After Tampons.

Right now we are at the very beginning of our Reclaim the Sass Challenge. Already hundreds and HUNDREDS of women are working together to overcome challenges and get sassy and happy about life. I’m leading the group, but I am clearly also one of them.

In other words, no pedestals here. No Ivory Tower. Just one women helping other women in the ways she is gifted to do best.

You have your own gifts, and your own concerns. So, if you’re ready, now is COMPLETELY the best time to Reclaim Your Sass during the month of September.

If you are already a regular subscriber to Life After Tampons, you are already enrolled. If you would like to join us, simply put your contact information in the box below.  You can start with the very next video (we do not send videos already recorded because I want to reinforce this: You are NOT behind.)

We start where we are. Trust that that is enough.

And then, have fun, make good choices.

Love, Jen

 

 

Photo: Flickr, KT King

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