Be Your Own Best Friend
I found this article in my computer that I had written for a magazine last year that was never published. Today I just felt there was someone out there that needed to read it. I used a picture of me and one of my best friends because it makes me feel so much joy. Thanks Jenny for the true example of a best friend !
I have to admit the title of this article and the concept of being my own best friend has been a hard one for me. I make my living traveling the world as a speaker and author sharing the ideas and life principles that have truly changed my life. Basically, I make my living doing what all of our mothers taught us not to do, talking to strangers. But, I can honestly say to you that it’s not just my career it is my true calling. I am so blessed to share the ideas that drastically have changed my life. It’s honestly unbelievable to me at times that this shy, very insecure, and negative girl now shares messages of hope and inspiration. I won’t sugar coat it, the journey has not always been an easy one but the great journeys of life never are.
Here I am now at the extreme end of my 50th decade on this earth and I have had to GROW through not just GO through some major lessons in my life. At times life hands you unexpected situations that you never thought you would face. Along the way I have faced some major health scares, divorce, being a single parent, being a solo entrepreneur and fighting the negative personal messages in my head as the hands of time march on.
Along my journey of life, I have been blessed with some amazing friends. I have had friends that truly “get me” and understand this life that I have not only chosen but the life that has chosen me. But even the best of friends can’t always be there for you exactly when you need them. There are times in all of our lives where we feel the loneliness start to close in and we feel totally alone.
Where do we turn when we feel there is no physical person to turn to? What do we do when we feel lost and alone? What do we do when we feel no one can see us or hear us? What if you don’t have those relationships in your life that you can count on? What if you have those people in your world but time prohibits you really having those conversations on a regular basis? Honestly, that is what has happened to me through the years. The handful of people that I have found that I have this connection with are at times not available due to schedules and life. One of the greatest human needs is to be seen and heard but we have to also truly learn how to see and hear ourselves. I have had to learn the hard way the most important conversations I will ever have are the ones I am having with myself.
I realized recently that those relationships that I value so much are the same qualities I need to learn to have with my myself and with the dreams I am pursuing. Whether I get to have conversations with others or not I need to show up for myself and the calling that I know that I have been put on this earth to fulfill. My belief is that we all have a calling in our lives and only you can know that that calling really is.
How do you do that? How do you show up for yourself and your dreams? First of all, you treat it with the same respect that you do the relationships that you value. What do you do for the people that you value? You make time for them. You take the time to listen and engage. You take the time to give it your attention.
We have to do that for ourselves. When is the last time you really gave yourself the “attention” that you give to those that you care about and love? I know it’s hard for me. I always feel like I should be doing something for someone else. Most of us learned those lessons from our sweet Southern Mamma’s. We learned how to take excellent care of everyone else but not how to take care of ourselves. What about your dreams, your passion and your life? Treat those dreams and that calling like you would someone you really love.
For me, it means that I have to give my writing, working on my presentations, building my product line the same kind of attention that I give my closest inner circle. It means that I honor those dreams by giving them the time they need and deserve to grow.
Because I love interaction and integrated conversation and I love creating with someone else it is not always easy being a solo entrepreneur. But, if you truly have a dream and a passion you are not alone. You are on the path of creation with the dream you have been given and it deserves your time and attention. Honor it. How do you honor it? You honor it by setting time aside just for it.
If you are a writer, set aside time to write even if it is for 15 minutes. Show up for that talent and that dream. If you are a singer, set aside time to sing even if it’s just for yourself. Show your dream that you are ALL IN and Show your dream that you respect it and honor it and will not neglect it.
How do relationships die? Neglect. How do plants die? Neglect. How does your health deteriorate? Neglect. Everything in your life is either growing or dying. Everything in your life is either in expansion or contraction. Your dreams and the power of them will contract if you do not give them the attention they need. A relationship can’t survive if you only give it attention every now and then and that includes a great relationship with yourself. No, great relationships are built by giving them attention on a consistent basis.
Don’t let the habit of neglect rob you of the dreams and talents you were sent to this planet to share. Nurture, build, protect and defend those dreams. Treat them like the most important relationships in your life, because they are. They will never leave you. They will never be too busy for you. This is truly the ONE relationship that you are in total control of. You don’t have to wait for them to show up and be present. They are ALWAYS waiting on you. You are their protector and their defender. You decide if they grow and flourish or if they die. You have all the power over those dreams and your personal relationship with yourself. What will you choose? I pray that you choose You! I have learned the hard way the only way to be in the best service to others is to learn to truly take care of yourself. Let’s join together and put ourselves on that continual “to do list” that we all have at all times. You are worth it. You deserve it! Be Your Own Best Friend!