Imagine putting yourself first.
Imagine not feeling guilty about taking a break from caring for others, knowing what you need and want, and not being sidetracked by other’s expectations or demands on you.
Sounds wonderful, right? These are just a few of the many challenges women face that block them from knowing who they really are.
To create a hand-crafted life that feels peaceful and connected, you must know how to Return to You.
When you know how to tune in to yourself, you know what you need and want. You know your authentic truth. With these foundational pieces in place, you begin to stand for yourself,
You protect your time, energy, and well-being so that you feel more spacious, calm, and confident.
Over the past three+ decades, I’ve had the honor of witnessing women’s courageous journeys from barely surviving to thriving. From feeling unworthy and depleted to achieving personal and/or professional successes beyond what they had ever imagined for themselves.
This can happen for you.
The Radiant Threefold Path of Return+Reclaim+Receive — the framework I use in my work with women — begins with you returning to the truth of who you are.
At the beginning of your journey of Return, you will:
- Struggle to keep yourself at the top of your list of priorities.
- Believe that the pleasurable things you do for yourself are selfish or self-centered.
- Suppress your emotions to please others.
- Struggle to know what you want.
- Have difficulty keeping the focus on yourself. You will over-focus on your partner, your children, your extended family, or the endless distractions that pull you away from your authentic self.
- Struggle to tune into yourself without all of the guilt you feel when you focus your attention on you.
- Spend so much time pleasing people you won’t know how you would prefer to spend your time.
Do you relate to any of these? I’ve never known a woman who didn’t struggle with one — or all — of them.
One woman described her challenge this way:
I need to figure out who I am, and what my needs and desires are. I need to stop trying to please other people and take care of me!
Yes! I love her clarity. And, it takes a firm commitment and a lot of support to stop over-giving to others and taking care of you.
What if you could prioritize you, feel more confident in your inner knowing, and have the courage to withstand pushback, complaining (or worse) from others when you begin caring for you?
This is the vision I hold for every woman who faces these challenges and roadblocks to her happiness, confidence, sense of self-worth, and her inner knowing that she is loved and treasured.
When you prioritize you, feel more confident, and know how to stand for you, you will effortlessly feel filled up, worthy, and ready to receive the gifts that come your way.
In fact, you are probably already receiving more than you realize, but it’s difficult to see that or take it in because you’re not used to giving to you in the form of high-quality, pleasurable self-care. This can be a difficult truth to face.
As women, we strive to be kind, nice, and sweet. We are masterful caretakers.
You may think, “I can’t prioritize myself. I have children, a partner, clients, and family members to take care of. They depend on me. I can’t let them down!”
You may worry that if you start focusing on you, others will be angry, and that feels unbearable because you already feel guilty when you put yourself first. Or maybe you give in when others get upset that you’re attending to your needs and wants.
But here’s the danger: If you don’t take care of you, who will?
And how will you sustain your compassion and your ability to take care of others over the long run if you don’t replenish and refill your self-care tank?
Many of us neglect to fill ourselves up, thinking that we’re doing it for the sake of being a good mother/spouse/daughter/friend.
But would you overlook filling up your car with fuel believing that everything will be just fine when your gas tank is empty?
This is what you do to yourself when you stay too busy with caretaking or other people’s agendas, and don’t take time to replenish, refill, or rest.
One of the most common reasons women struggle to focus on themselves is that they believe — either consciously or unconsciously — that it’s selfish.
You may have been taught that it’s self-centered to focus on you. You may know intellectually that it’s not true, but on some level you still believe it.
And then, when you do take time for you and others complain, their pushback seems to prove the point and provide evidence that indeed, you are selfish.
I invite you to question the thought: Is it selfish for me to take care of, or prioritize, me?
Is this really true? And if you hear a loud “YES” in your head, what do you think the long-term consequences are to you (or your family) of putting yourself second, third, or even last?
Many of us complain that we feel like second-class citizens, or that our partner or spouse doesn’t put us first. But do we put ourselves first?
If you don’t put yourself first, then (respectfully) it’s unreasonable to expect others to do for you what you are not willing to do for yourself.
Many women firmly and wholeheartedly believe that they don’t have time for themselves.
The truth is, each of us has the same amount of time in a day.
When I hear a woman say she doesn’t have time to prioritize herself, I don’t think it’s about clock time. It’s about how she prioritizes her life.
It reminds me of a story Liz Gilbert (author of Eat, Pray, Love) tells. She conducted a survey on Facebook asking people what was the one thing that stopped them from pursuing their desires. The #1 answer was Time.
Can you see the irony? They’re on Facebook answering a survey, saying they don’t have time to pursue their dreams.
This is not a problem of time. It’s a problem of priorities.
I’ve had a front-row seat over the years into the lives of courageous women who were caring for multiple school-age children (many were home-schooling), and at the same time were fiercely protective and unapologetic about carving out even 10 minutes of their day for prioritizing themselves.
Their choice paid many dividends in their life, including feeling happier, more content, and experiencing more connection with the people they loved most. When I think about their dedication to themselves, I am inspired.
We all have 24 hours in a day. I would love that you spend at least 30 minutes of every 24-hour period making yourself happy. That is less than 3% of your day!
You are more than worth it. You can do this!!
What holds you back from prioritizing and Returning to You? I’d love to hear in the comments below!
© Victoria Priya (2023)
I want to support you to Return to the authentic truth of who you are, Reclaim what is yours, and Receive everything that is meant for you. So that you can Regenerate your life, your relationships, community, and the world.
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