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Say "yes" to YOU!

"Daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves even when we risk disappointing others." Brene Brown

I woke up Monday morning with one word on my mind. YES. It’s time. I am READY! After four months of upheaval and uncertainty during a global pandemic, I decided that now is the time to say “yes” to getting back on track with my nutrition. It’s not that I ate horribly. I was eating 99% of my meals at home and eating lots of fruits and veggies. But little by little, as I spent more time at home and prepared more meals and snacks for my family I began to grab a handful of chips with salsa here and a few pretzels there, along with “treating” myself to some dark chocolate at the end of the day (my go-to treat.) And while there’s nothing wrong with any of these things on their own, they began to add up to extra pounds that were weighing me down (literally!)

This is just one example of how I was treating myself by saying "yes" to mindless eating and extra calories and "no" to better health and energy. I honestly can’t count the number of times a day that I’m faced with the decision of saying yes to something that supports me or holds me back from feeling my best and doing my best! I’m guessing you are in the same boat because let’s face it, as humans we interact with people all day long. Our time, money, and energy are constantly being vied for by our friends, family, co-workers, boss, our kid’s school, our church, not to mention the television, news, and social media! The list goes on and on. And as with all of us, our precious resources in the form of our time, money and energy are limited.

I remember as a young adult I had NO boundaries. I would let people jerk me around willy nilly because I was “nice.” I’m also a nurturer by nature and an Enneagram Type Nine- Peacemaker, which generally means that I don’t like to “rock the boat.” And while I do enjoy doing nice things for others and helping my friends, family, and volunteering at my kid’s school, there is only so much I can do before completely depleting my energy leaving nothing left for myself. As much as I practice The Four Seeds of Self-Care, I have found that saying "yes" to me is a muscle that I must continue to strengthen. This means that I must at times get very uncomfortable by saying "no" to things that I would normally agree to. This also means that I have to let go of caring what other people think if I say no. I constantly remind myself that what other people think of me is none of my business!

I believe that we are conditioned to think that it is selfish to take care of our needs. It took many years of introspective questioning for me to get to the core of these same questions that Shonda Rhimes asked of herself, in Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person - “I’m great at taking care of people. So why am I so bad at taking care of myself? Why am I so unwilling to show myself kindness and consideration, to cut myself the same slack, to give myself the same protection and care that I would give to everyone?”