I have no problem showing off a #shelfie on instagram, so why can't I rock a #selfie? My theory is that we often hide behind our work, our homes, our kids, our pets and our beautifully filtered, meticulously staged instagrams of inanimate objects. It allows us to refrain from displaying the wonderful artist behind the camera - our one and only selves.
Most of us are our own worst critics, myself included. Those who can truly love their selfie are few and far between (although we all have a few on our Instagram feed we would like to see love their selfies a little bit less).
It's scary to put yourself out there. We're scared of rejection, embarrassment, judgment, and the feelings that surface as a result. Ultimately, we're terrified of the thought of (gasp!) failure. The truth is, if we let go of these menacing thoughts - easier said than done - it is actually quite invigorating. So, here goes nothing!
This is by no means a #iwokeuplikethis, #nomakeup, #nofilter selfie. Hah! I'm working up to that. But in the meantime, I'm pretty proud of it. Moreover, I want to maintain a positive self image, because I want Avery to have one. So I'm just going to have to fake it 'til I make it, and learn to own it in the process!
We all need to give ourselves a little more credit. Life is hard! And although everyone's journey is completely different, we are all guilty of comparison from time to time (or ALL the time). The truth is, if you compare yourself to others, you will just set yourself up to be disappointed. I will be the first to admit that I am 100% guilty of this... "She's a better mom than me because of X,Y,Z,". "Why did she have business success overnight, and I'm struggling?". "Why can't I look like her in my yoga pants?" blah, blah blah.
Something that is so important, and could help us all love our selfies a little more is self care. This sounds simple, but can prove to be an uphill battle. I have noticed that especially since Miss Avery Etta came into the picture, self care often falls to the wayside. There are a million other things I could be doing instead, like cleaning Avery's toys, organizing my closet, trying to figure out what to make for dinner... The list goes on and on! I come last, if at all.
I know deep down that I shouldn't come last, and that if I actually put myself first, it would be better for my entire family. I am working on doing this without feeling guilty about it all the time. (Sidenote: here is a cute article via PopSugar on mom guilt - yes, it's a real thing!).
So, as everything else in life, prioritizing self care is a work in progress. Here are a few baby steps I have taken to try to give my selfie some more love. I hope that by sharing these small tips with you, it might ignite a spark of inspiration for you to do so as well. You're worth it!
Yup, it's as simple as that! I find that if I am showered, dressed, and properly caffeinated before Avery wakes up, I already feel one step ahead. Let's be real - this does NOT happen every day. But I am working towards it, because I have noticed a direct correlation between my mood on the days that I accomplish this in the morning, versus how my days feel when I fail to do so until much later in the day.
It could even just be 10-15 minutes, but during that time, do something that you love. I love just sitting with my cup of coffee (note the caffeine theme here) and scrolling through Bloglovin' or catching up on some personal emails or news. You may not have the luxury of time on your side, but you can fit this into your day accordingly. If you commute, why not make a mix of your favorite uplifting songs and blast it (at a non-offensive volume) all the way into the office? It will make that man's armpit in your face on the Uptown 6 a heck of a lot more tolerable, at least until you can switch cars at the next stop.
Spend a a few minutes more on yourself in the morning. For me, it's taking the extra five minutes to put some make up on. It makes me feel better about myself and look a little more alive, and that's okay. For you, it could be stretching, meditating, doing some yoga - whatever works! The extra five minutes you invest in yourself will go a long way.
You may not have the time or money for an all out spa day, but treats can come in many different shapes and sizes. Maybe it's getting a quick manicure (guys too!), taking a bath, or spending the $4.95 on a venti caramel macchiato with extra whip (so worth it) from time to time and not feeling selfish for doing so.
Admittedly difficult during this terrible winter we've had, and we don't all have this gorgeous balcony to saunter out on, but get outside! Or at least open the windows. Take a walk around the block during lunch, take the dog to the park, put the kid in the stroller and run an errand, relish in your walk to the subway. Move around and breathe in that "fresh" air!
Sometimes helping others is the best way to help yourself. I always feel better after taking Bear to do his therapy visits (more on that here). But for you it could be rescuing a shelter animal (hint, hint), volunteering, doing a random act of kindness for a stranger, or just lending an ear to a friend in need.
I know, they are the ones that can often drive you a little crazy (love ya!), but at the end of the day, they're always there for you. They are the force behind you that encourages you and inspires you. They love you unconditionally, even when you don't love yourself. Maybe you don't live with or near any family members, but they're just a call, a Skype or a Face Time away!
We can't all be Karlie and Taylor (at least not all the time). But we can give our besties a call. Better yet, try to meet up in person if possible. As we get older and busier, this becomes harder and harder. At some point we cross over that line between checking your friend's AOL Instant Messenger status and learning that you can find her "studying at the libe :-)" to scheduling a "catching up" phone call via an outlook calendar invite. But that's okay - we'll take what we can get! Something as simple as some friendapy can be the best dose of medicine for your selfie.
It's okay to like pretty things. They can lift your spirits. There's nothing wrong with spending a few bucks at the bodega on some cheery flowers, or buying something quirky that's going to bring a smile to your face (great article on that via Apartment Therapy here).
What better place to show off the things you love and that are so essentially you than on a display shelf? So come on, don't be shy, show me your #shelfie! AND your #selfie.