Friday, June 4, 2010

Self-Appreciation

It was another green, green day today but that won't be the focus of my post. For all you curious raw foodies though, today was all about 2/3 green juicing again. I think this may become something of a permanent habit of mine because I'm really loving it. Breakfast was papaya, frozen pineapple, and spinach. Lunch was me voraciously eating 3/4 of the batch of tabbouleh I made yesterday (think me = lion in the savanna and parsley = poor defenseless wildebeest), assorted veggies and some watermelon. Dinner was another green smoothie of 1 pear, 1/2 frozen banana, beet greens and frisee lettuce, and water. I ate dinner during my weekly use of Pangea's awesome Face Mask, and I was very entertained by the fact that my face mask was the same colour as my green smoothie. Classic. (photo source)

Anyway, on to the actual topic of my day: Self-Appreciation.

We spend way too much time beating ourselves up for things we both do and don't do and it really has to stop! While we can very easily criticize ourselves for having done something wrong, we have a much harder time congratulating ourselves for the things we do right. A post by Michelle over at The Garlic Chronicles made me give this some serious thought recently. She decided to think of 5 things she did right that day and write them down. I thought it was a fabulous idea to get myself into a cycle of positivity and self-love, so I decided to do it too. Again, I tend to think of myself as a happy optimistic person and I thought this would be a cinch.

I sat down, grabbed pen and notebook, and thought "hey, it's just 5 things." And I sat there... and sat there. And sat there. One thing leaked off on to the paper, then #2, and eventually #3. Then I was stuck. Then I started to wonder if #2 really counted because I had actually done X which kind of makes #2 less valid, so it shouldn't count, but sort of, but not... and if that were the case, well #3 was kind of like that too because... I had to tell myself to just STOP! I couldn't believe it was that hard! For some reason, we allow ourselves to think all sorts of negative thoughts not matter how small or even made-up. We accept them and take them as fact, but when we try to think of something positive, we either do not allow ourselves to do so or we think our thought is too small or insignificant to count as valid. For example, the very act of choosing to do this exercise should count as something right because it's a step towards health and happiness. Right things don't have to be big things, we don't have to save a puppy from a burning house or give change to every homeless person we see in our day (though doing both those things obviously be great!), it can just be that you smiled at the person at the check out counter today or that you went to the gym even if you really weren't in the mood.

Apparently, this is an exercise I definitely need to get in the habit of doing. I want to keep doing it until I can just jot down five things I did right on any given day as easily as if you were to ask me to list five things I like to eat (which would be great, since it would be hard for me to pick just five things).

Anyway, if you are someone struggling with who you are, stress, life in general, and/or if you simply want more happiness in your life, I suggest you do this too. Just try it out, even if it's just in your head. You will both learn a great deal about yourself and it'll also make you happy. And isn't that the point of life?

“When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too.” (Paulo Coehlo, The Alchemist)

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