Why you NEED to put yourself first
There's a reason that the Airline Safety message tells you to put on your own Oxygen mask before attending to your kids.
Its because you are IMPORTANT, and VALUABLE, and best able to serve your family, if your are functioning properly.
That's a lesson that we need to take on board in daily life, and I'm talking Women AND Men.
We have a skewed idea of 'value' in our society. Instead of being our best selves, we try to be our most productive, most affluent, most admired, most useful. And yet, its when we push too hard to be all these things, that EVERYTHING about us suffers.
We almost all of us have a Pinterest board with positive quotes, affirmations, and probably some Oprah in there as well, and yet, how often do we ACTUALLY take on board what we read? How many times have you seen something about loving yourself no matter what, and 2 minutes later, you're looking for a new diet?
This weekend, my Husband and I ran away from home. We left our responsibilities in the capable hands of others, and went away for 24 hours. We stayed at a beautiful hotel, we bought expensive tickets to a Comic Book Convention (because we are Geeks, and proud ;) ), and we had a great time. We only worried about the kids every hour or so, so we did pretty well!
My Husband and I both work pretty hard. We have had a few particularly tiring weeks, and we needed a rest. Not everyone can have a weekend away, or go to OzComiCon (more's the pity!), but its not about what you do, so much as WHY you do it. Its important that you realise that YOU matter.
I hear all the time people saying "my Family comes first", and so it should, but you do realise that YOU are part of your Family right? YOU are every bit as valuable, important, breakable, and irreplaceable as everyone that counts on you, and I can guarantee you that they WANT you to know that.
So how do you take a break when you run your own business? Or run a household? Or care for someone with a disability? However you can, basically.
It doesn't have to be a holiday, but time for yourself, whether its just a coffee by yourself or with friends, or maybe even a trip to the library to read the first thing you pick up, the point isn't to find that perfect Instagramable moment, but to press pause on everything but you, even for a little while.
Easier said than done, this I know all too well, but as someone who has experienced first hand the consequences of not cutting yourself a break, you NEED to find a way.
A very big part of Viva La Buttercream has always been to inspire people, not just in Art, but in life. To grab it with both hands, and enjoy it, to feel the value you have innately, not because of something you provide, but by just being you.
If I can leave you with nothing else this week, please take this virtual hug/kick in the pants to put yourself first occasionally. Because you matter, very much.
Viva La Buttercream xx