One thing that I notice in a majority of the clients for my coaching service, is that people are amazing at showing up for a meeting. They find it easy to show up on time for a doctor’s appointment. They think it’s relatively simple to show up on time to work or a scheduled Zoom call. And they’d almost never cancel an important coffee date. We are trained from a very young age to understand that people’s time is valuable and when someone expects you to be there, you had better show up (or have a very good excuse)!
But, if accountability towards others is this common rule, why is it so hard to show up for ourselves?
Whether we are talking about self care rituals or going after our biggest dreams, anything that is for ourselves can so often become de-prioritized for the agendas of those around us. We easily shift other’s priorities ahead and give up our own desires, tasks and space, deeming their’s “more important”.
When will you be willing to show up for yourself as your most important priority?
If Oprah was calling you to the stage, would you snooze? Would you be late? Worse, would you reschedule her and hope she can find time again?
Sounds silly, doesn’t it?
Well, powerful woman, I want you to start showing up for yourself in the same way! Value your time. Value your dreams. Value your goals just as much as you would being invited to talk to Oprah (or your equivalent, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity you would not give up even if you were super sick)!
How do you rewire this automatic reaction to put yourself last? How do you start showing up for yourself?
1. Understand your value
Strive to be both your own best employee and employer. Understand that you are at the same level of importance as your colleague, your boss, your friend or your family member. Start expecting from yourself what others would expect from you and be committed when the time come to show up for yourself.
Visualize one person who you always show up for. Make a list of all the reasons you respect them enough to be there when they ask you. Use this as a starting point to inspire your own understanding of what you value and what makes you desire to show up consistently.
Then, do a similar exercise where you make a list of all the reasons why you respect yourself. Make sure it has just as much value as the first list.
The key in this exercise: Seeing why you deserve to show up for yourself as much as you do for others.
2. Repeat it over and over and over
If there is one mantra I want you to repeat, it’s this one:
I deserve to show up for myself consistently with love and kindness.
Every morning, look yourself in the mirror and say this mantra to yourself with passion. Look into your eyes. Smile as you say it. For there, start repeating it until you begin to feel like you’re ready for anything.
The key in this exercise: Replacing a mental pattern is a work of art. If you have formed a habit around failing to show up for yourself and constantly cancelling on your own plans, desires or needs, it can take time to rebuild a new pattern. Just remember: practice makes progress!
3. Recognize the patterns
Make a list of all the times you remember cancelling on yourself or changing your plans at the last minute to accommodate someone else.
This might look like:
- Making a plan to go to the gym, then cancelling because a friend invites you over at that evening last minute
- Planning a full self-care evening, then shrugging it of when someone asks you if you had plans, saying “it’s nothing important.”
- Deciding to start playing the piano, then never committing on a specific schedule and not learning at all!
- Having that deep, soul-aligned dream, then never taking the first steps towards it because you feel like you are not ready yet (FYI: you never feel fully ready!)
Are these ringing any bells? These are all times when you’ve felt your needs were not important enough. And, Goddess? It’s time to make a change.
Make a detailed list and realize how often you might be prioritizing everything else over yourself. Afterwards, write a forgiveness statement where you forgive yourself, let go and welcome this new shift of how you do things!
The key in this exercise: Seeing your pattern is half the work of shifting out of it.
4. Take action
For the next week, block out 10 minutes in your schedule each day to book an ’Appointment with Myself.’ Make sure to book it during a time where it is realistic for you to show up every day and that you can actually follow through and respect it. Usually right after waking up or right before bed tend to be good times.
Every day show up for yourself by showing up to that ‘appointment’ and then do whatever it is in that moment you feel like.
You may catch yourself finding it hard showing up every day for this. You may begin wondering what will happen if something else comes up. Well, darling, remember: nothing is better than yourself!
The key in this exercise: Consistently showing up for yourself will teach you to trust your own word. It’s not so much about using the time for intentional action but for simply enjoying the slowness of being in your own presence, regardless of what you choose to do: meditate, dream, cook or dance! It’s your time!
If you’re ready to get started, join me on my podcast as I talk you through the process.
And remember, sunshine: you deserve it.