"Whoa! That sounds SO selfish!" That is the first thing we think when we begin talking about putting ourselves first. Of course everything has a context and in context to lifestyle change, the concept of self care is paramount. It is simply not selfish to take care of myself and my needs. Part of the concept of self care is determining what and who we allow in our space. Two weeks ago before the snow, we talked about this concept using the analogy of life's theater and who we allow in the seats right next to us in the front row, who we allow behind us and who we ask to sit clear in the back of the life's theater.
For many many years, I just didn't realize that I was the one who had the right, power and responsibility to choose who would be near me in my life. Now I understand that if someone is not safe or emotionally healthy, then I can choose to not have them sit right next to me or I can even ask them to leave my theater! Many of us feel stuck in our own life's theater with difficult, unhealthy and unsafe people in many of the seats right next to us. For our own health and well-being, it is necessary to have conversations with these folks expressing how we feel, our needs and ultimately where we would like them to sit in our life's theater, Using "I" statements is the most healthy and beneficial way in which to do this. The more healthy I become on this journey of lasting lifestyle change, the more it is OK with me to have some people sit in the back row of my life. I realize that around these folks I tend to revert back to my "old co-dependent self" and all the unhealthy behaviors that it entails.
God, thank you that your love gives me permission to be my own best friend, before I am anyone elses. Help me understand that self care is not selfish and is necessary, in order for me to give back to others in a healthy, meaningful way.
Who needs to be placed in the front row of your life's theater, in the middle and in the back? What will it take to put them there? What repercussions might you face as you change the seating in your theater?