It started with banana bread craving this noon! I don’t always crave food but the past weeks my cravings have been abysmal. And with self affirmations and realisation – “buckle up buttercup, you know that you’re very special, and it’s time for self love! For the most important person in your life is you. So, be mindful of what to think, and want.”
As the title says, this blog is a long rant about self love.
Usually, my go-to brand of self love ranges between a long walk, podcasts or audio books, long bath, cooking, vegetating on my bed, and exercising. But these days I’m taking it a bit further with self-pep-talk (girl! You look hot!), some banana cakes and hot chocolates (since I’m finally giving up caffeine and alcohol is off the chart), keeping my inner self-critique fully leashed (cause our brain is constantly trying to keep us small and safe and also stopping us from living our life fully), surrounding myself with people who love and encourage (cause you know what, you have to stop doing things for people out of concern and moral compass pointing north, for it often has zero gratitude in return), stop comparing (cause hey, your cousin doing his PhD at Oxford is not you, he has different skill sets just as you do, and you have achieved way more than him in some areas of life – so stop getting pressured by your overachieving South Asian family with myriads of intimidating members, cause you are awesome too – take pride in being the black sheep), and last but not the least… End all toxic relationships.
After hours of talking about my feelings I have finally decided to step outside of my comfort zone and try something new. Like have zero dishwasher etiquette! Fuck it! Dishwasher anarchy!
Anyway, another part of my self love is about responsibility no matter the consequence – have the courage to own my own shit! Others opinion of me won’t change my life unless I let it touch me. So what people say must be seen in objective light for believe me when I say, – after they are done gossiping about me, I hope they pray for me to be as “perfect” as they are!
You see, moral high grounds can be tricky. Example: recently someone had been very adamantly telling me that they would put their hand on fire for a person (a person I would consider very sly and problematic) than trust some others (people I would consider reasonably honest and easily misunderstood). I was fascinated by that person and the conviction behind such a strong opinion. Till I found out that the same person didn’t hesitate twice to sleep with someone in a committed relationship. Quite a few times. Moral high grounds can be very tricky, I realised then, while oscillating between mild nausea from disgust, and outrage (along side heaps of facepalm and head shaking and laughing at their hypocrisy), my opinion of their choices doesn’t matter either, cause they are responsible for their own actions and respective consequences: “Judge not others if you don’t want to be judged yourself”… Cause like it or not, when you judge others, you do not define them, you define yourself. I’ve been there, full blown judgemental, so now I’m just practicing not to visit that space again. Self love!
Seriously. My course for self love is to stay as far away from toxicity as possible! Including, mindfully eliminating my own. Ah! Yes! I have finally decided to also pat my own back for every win no matter how big or small!
On our last PSL heist, Barwitzki introduced me to an interesting (bridgeable) idea. Though it is sprouting from economics, I totally see the point as to why some empaths or neuro-divergents decide to keep being in toxic relationships (with toxic parents and friends even), while silently helping out the said toxic person at one’s own mental health cost and never confronting the situation/person nor end it. Sunk-cost fallacy. Fascinating. Text book definition? “It is the phenomenon whereby a person is reluctant to abandon a strategy or course of action because they have invested heavily in it, even when it is clear that abandonment would be more beneficial.” Yes, we figured that it’s not just limited to financial investment but also emotional investments would have same outcome. So my new mode of self love is also this: anyone who makes me feel anything less than amazing doesn’t deserve to be a part of my life. No matter the cost.
Something to remember. If you have no way of avoiding these humans in your life – take a greater distance. In case of them throwing a tantrum, or seeking attention, or making a greater mess and messaging you particularly when you are on weekends relaxing or on holidays, purposely stressing you out or stepping on your boundaries – instead of politeness, understanding, and kindness (my usual go-to that is just too unhealthy, I’ve realised) – give them a taste of their own medicine. Be a mirror. Hold them accountable. Most importantly, to have the courage to say “no” when needed. To set boundaries. To question when things don’t seem right. And in times of dicey answers – put your foot down. After that if they are meant to stay they will work on themselves to stay in your life or the door is always open. Have courage to let them go.
By now, this rant has surely made me realise that my self love has gone from taking shit and then hibernating to regain energy and then taking more shit, – to understanding and owning the fact that I’m no Gandhi! To be honest even Gandhi was a sneaky lawyer who mastered the art of manipulating truth in order to come out glorious in history books. Admire him for his royal-sneakiness aka slyness, but thank goodness I’m not him (perhaps it highlights my lack of intelligence – but who cares, as long as I am fine with me)!
All of the above, just adding on to my new routine of self love and self growth – for one must be patient and persistent, but never allowing one self to be manipulated, exploited and defeated.