In February, I began a self-challenge to love on myself more by applying the 5 Love Languages on myself daily, & since doing so, things began to shift in my life in "subtle yet profound ways." However, with this shift came moments of deep self-reflection and in some ways, self-actualization. I came to some harsh, eye-opening realizations about myself, and one in particular stands out the most: I have a hard time putting myself first and saying "no" to my friends. Now, I say this with a small, yet very honest confession, that on more occasions than I would like to admit, I have easily said "no" to some family members, with absolutely no concern for how they would perceive it (this stems from some resentment issues that I am working on through therapy).
But, in reference to my friends (whom I spend majority of my time communicating or spending time with), the main issue for me is that on the rare occasions that I have denied requests or was unable to show up to events for them, I have always beat myself up before, during, and after making that decision, being overly concerned that they would perceive my absence as me being a bad person and/or friend. I did not even realize that in those moments, I have done a great thing by choosing myself. Did you notice the depth to what I just said?! By saying "no" to them, I was saying "yes" to me, but I didn't realize at the time how pivotal that was for me and my mental health and overall well being. This realization is so deep on different levels, and I have chosen to share some of it with you in hopes that it will remind someone that needs to read it that, it is ok to say "yes" to you, and to remove the folks in your life that no longer add to but only subtract from your life.
After my friend break-up (that I shared with you in my New Year blog post) I took some time to truly reflect on where I dropped the ball in that friendship and also where I have done so in my failed romantic relationships. It was necessary for me to do this, in order to realize the error of my ways and also to notice my sad and deprecating trend of putting others before me in an unhealthy way. I realized that I was doing this because of how it made and still makes me feel.
Then, last month, I was introduced to a
virtual "prayer room" on IG led by my friend and fellow Colorful Dreamer,
Ladun Thompson, CEO of Body of God, and in all honesty, his prayer room has helped me see myself even clearer. I realized that I am not alone in this battle of choosing others over me unhealthily. The overall issue is me having a hard time choosing me and for me to find out why I am so concerned about what my friends think about me.
I am being completely transparent and vulnerable with you all. I say this because a lot of people who don't really know me would never assume that I cared about what other people think about me due to how I carry myself. I exude a strong presence of self-confidence, self-love, and an overall no-nonsense aura (which I found out is because of my Ascendant (how you present yourself to the world) being in Capricorn), however, like anyone else, I battle with insecurities and am not as confident as some may think. Through therapy, I am learning more about me and what I need to do to show up for me more, and what type of people I should align myself with in order for my best self to be revealed and sustained. Through this process, I am praying for the strength and discernment needed for me to remove myself from the people and things that no longer serve me along my journey back to me through self-love.
I am not proud of me choosing friends over my family in the past, and I must say, currently with the help of therapy and me choosing to be intentional with my happiness and self-love, I have extended myself more and have been more approachable and acceptable of certain requests for time and/or errands for and with my family, and I honestly feel great about it. I am still working on the concept, "If saying "yes" to you means saying "no" to me, then I can't do it," (may make a t-shirt with that quote, so don't steal it y'all, lol), and I still find it difficult at times because I loathe confrontation, or having to explain why I can't do something or why I have chosen to no longer engage with someone. The same way we choose not to often explain why we do something, is the same way we should treat how we choose not to do something; I feel like that needs to be normalized for me since I am such an over-explainer. Though, I must say, I have also learned that silence works if I have no positive words to say while working through a negative feeling due to me not choosing myself in a situation. The silence allows me to truly hear what God needs to say to me in order to guide me towards the right direction towards peace. Peace is priceless and I must do all I can to protect mine. At all costs.
All in all, I know this process will not be an easy one for me due to a lot of unlearning that needs to be done, however it is necessary for my self-love journey. Because, again, If i can't say "yes" to me then how can I truly learn to love me and love on me more?
So from now on, I choose me, and will continue to choose me, daily, by the grace of God.
I am making a public promise to myself to choose God, choose me, choose family, choose my purpose-driven goals, choose friends, and to overall, choose love & happiness. In that order.
And, I hope you do too because, you are worth it.
No matter what, never forget to:
Lead with Love.
Love Always, Your Dope Colorful Dreamer, Myrna 🙏🏾💜