When I’m in pain — physical or emotional — the kindest thing I can do for myself is…
Be kind to myself.
Seems simple, but we (I) are our own worst critics. We think we shouldn’t be slowed down or hindered by physical or emotional disruptions in the force (haha). But seriously, as my life coach always reminds me… being kind to myself is the best gift I can give to myself.
If a good friend or family member was going through the exact same struggles I am, I would see all the brave and beautiful things about that person and would urge them to be kind to themselves. So, the challenge to myself is to see the brave and beautiful things about myself during times of struggle… and be kind. And maybe watch a harry potter marathon. ;)
I couldn’t imagine living without:
I am always so thankful for the comforts of the life I’ve been blessed to live. So I can’t imagine living without a roof over my head, running water at my fingertips, heat (heated blankets, a heated house, warm clothes, warm blankets), electricity, always having food available when I’m hungry, ability to work and support my family and having a healthy body that allows me to live the life I choose to live.
I am also thankful for a wonderful family and extended family, friends and all the souls that touch my life.
I couldn’t imagine my life without you.
I know I skipped 5… I’ll circle back around to it.
The words I’d like to live by are:
Self-love, self-compassion and self-kindness shine out from you. You cannot love, be kind or have compassion for others if you don’t do it yourself. LOVE YO’ SELF.
Moment 1: Standing in the Barn during my wedding late at night.
I took one moment to stand apart from everyone and take in the moment. Thinking to myself… this is MY day. And just being filled with such gratitude and joy for all the people who made that day the BEST day. I will never forget standing there and being filled with such pure love and joy.
Moment 2: Pep talk from my cousin Carmen
I was at a high school dance. I had been shut down or pushed out of a group and was feeling bad about myself. My cousin Carmen came over and gave me the best pep talk. She basically let me know that I was awesome and everyone else’s opinion did not matter (she used shorter words that rhymed with curse words… or maybe they were just curse words). Long story short… someone who I loved and admired told me I was worth all the awesomeness.
I know the challenge is to write two moments, but I have so many. So many special memories of my amazing family. Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, Siblings and Parents… have all blessed me with their time and love. I am a blessed human and having to choose just two moments reminds me how very blessed I am… because I have HUNDREDS of special moments.
If I could talk to teenage Ingrid, I would give her the biggest hug. I would tell her that she is whole and complete just the way she is. That being “herself” no matter what that looks like through the years to come is just the person she is supposed to be… so stop sweating the small stuff. I remember always feeling like the outsider, the person who didn’t belong. I remember longing for a place to always “fit in”. So, I’d also tell myself that I do fit in… right in my own body and soul. Fitting in with yourself is SO important. If you can’t accept, love and belong to yourself… it becomes so hard to fully accept and love others. It’s a circle that needs to be even and fed… love for yourself feeds love for others.
I have decided to get back on the wagon of writing in here more consistently. To help with that I’m going to use this list of 30 journaling topics to get the writing juices flowing every day. I’m looking forward to the challenge and accountability factor… now that I’ve posted on here that I’m going to do it.
List of 30 topics:
- My favorite way to spend the day is…
- If I could talk to my teenage self, the one thing I would say is…
- The two moments I’ll never forget in my life are… Describe them in great detail, and what makes them so unforgettable.
- Make a list of 30 things that make you smile.
- “Write about a moment experienced through your body. Making love, making breakfast, going to a party, having a fight, an experience you’ve had or you imagine for your character. Leave out thought and emotion, and let all information be conveyed through the body and senses.” (A prompt from Barbara Abercrombie’s creative book Kicking In The Wall: A Year of Writing Exercises, Prompts and Quotes To Help You Break Through Your Blocks And Reach Your Writing Goals.)
- The words I’d like to live by are…
- I couldn’t imagine living without…
- When I’m in pain — physical or emotional — the kindest thing I can do for myself is…
- Make a list of the people in your life who genuinely support you, and who you can genuinely trust. (Then make time to hang out with them.)
- What does unconditional love look like for you?
- What would you do if you loved yourself unconditionally? How can you act on these things whether you do or don’t?
- I really wish others knew this about me…
- Name what is enough for you.
- If my body could talk, it would say…
- Name a compassionate way you’ve supported a friend recently. Then write down how you can do the same for yourself.
- What do you love about life?
- What always brings tears to your eyes? (As Paulo Coelho has said, “Tears are words that need to be written.”)
- “Write about a time when work felt real to you, necessary and satisfying. Paid or unpaid, professional or domestic, physical or mental.” (Also a prompt from Abercrombie’s Kicking in the Wall.)
- Write about your first love — whether a person, place or thing.
- Using 10 words, describe yourself.
- What’s surprised you the most about your life or life in general?
- What can you learn from your biggest mistakes?
- I feel most energized when…
- “Write a list of questions to which you urgently need answers.” (This is probably my favorite prompt from Abercrombie’s book.)
- Make a list of everything that inspires you — from books to websites to quotes to people to paintings to stores to the stars.
- What’s one topic you need to learn more about to help you live a more fulfilling life? (Then learn about it.)
- I feel happiest in my skin when…
- Make a list of everything you’d like to say no to.
- Make a list of everything you’d like to say yes to.
- Write the words you need to hear.