I have a cold. I hate spring colds. Just when the weather is finally getting better and you yearn to be outdoors with the birds and the bees, you suddenly start sneezing about 15 times in a row and your eyes start feeling like they are sinking under water. “Maybe it’s just my allergies,” you try to reassure yourself, except you know don’t have any spring allergies. You have fall allergies. Then the headache and the urge for a blanket, a cup of tea and endless reruns of Columbo all converge on you and you know without a doubt – you have a cold.
At this point we remember that old tried and true saying passed down from mother to daughter for generations: “Feed a cold, starve a fever.” So you brew a pot of herbal tea and make sure you have OJ and soup on hand. Actually, what you’re doing is making sure that you stay hydrated in order to flush the cold virus out of your system.
It occurred to me as I curled up on the recliner with lemon ginger tea at my side and my journal on my lap that it would be lovely if we could stretch this idea to include starving those bad habits and beliefs that no longer serve us and flushing them right out of our system. If we don’t feed them, or encourage them, they die. For example, how many times do we criticize ourselves, judge ourselves, speak harshly to ourselves and buy into what other people say about us? We spend hours being bombarded by ads that tell us that we’re not acceptable unless we lose 30 pounds, use certain make-up, wear designer clothes or drive a certain car. We believe people who tell us we’re not smart enough, pretty enough, worth loving or capable of achieving our dreams. All of that can add up to a pretty heft case of unhappiness fever.
So how do we flush all those nasty defeating behaviors out of our system? By filling ourselves up with positive beliefs every minute of every day. Like a cup full of nasty tasting medicine, if we just keep pouring sweet nectar into the cup, eventually it will push the nasty stuff out and the cup will overflow with nectar. I am a big fan of Louise Hay’s Mirror Work and I can’t think of a better brand of nectar to use to flush out what is making us heart sick. For example, every time you pass a mirror, you look into your eyes and say something positive, like: “I love you, I really love you.” Coach and author Cheryl Richardson keeps a mirror on her desk and has a whole litany of positive affirmations she uses, such as: “You’re the smartest woman I know,” or, “I always have your back,” and, my favorite, “How’d you get so cute?” The ones I personally use are: “You are perfectly capable for every situation”,” I am enough,” “Only good lies before me,” and “All is well.”
When we take the time to treat ourselves like we would treat our best friend, we flush out everything that no longer serves us, or is making our lives “sick,” and create a beautiful and healthy relationship with ourselves, the most important relationship we’ll ever have. If we don’t “feel well” when we’re alone with ourselves, how are we supposed to build healthy relationships with others? We have to make ourselves a priority and treat ourselves in healthy and healing ways.
So today I am giving myself the gift of extreme self-care. I am keeping the fluids going, making sure to flush out the bad stuff to make room for good health. I am eating healthy foods, popping my vitamin C and curling up with a good book. I may even allow myself a nap later. Hopefully by tomorrow I’ll feel better. What a nice way to care for my BFF!
And so it is.