Focus on yourself

Focus on yourself

 

My goal isn’t to make people feel beautiful. It’s to make them realize that feeling beautiful doesn’t mean jack shit. Beauty fades. Beauty is not reliable. Beauty is subjective and fluctuating. You take up the space you want and say “I might not think I’m beautiful. Hell, I might be ugly to some people, but I still deserve to be here, to be loved, to do what I want.” I don’t think I’m beautiful at all, but I try not to stop that from getting in the way of living my life. That’s a much more powerful thought than “I’m beautiful too.” Don’t be afraid to be ugly and stop holding yourself to impossible standards in public. Ignore the male gaze. Ignore all gazes. Focus on yourself and what you’re trying to accomplish.

HOW TO TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF AFTER A LAPSE

HOW TO TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF AFTER A LAPSE

1. Recognize that lapsing is a normal part of recovery. 

I don’t say that to justify lapsing or use as a cop out when things get difficult. I say it as a reminder that your recovery doesn’t have to be perfect in order to produce results. That said, no one’s recovery is perfect. Everyone has set backs and struggles. Everyone makes mistakes, messes up, and reverts to old behaviors — not because they’re weak or incapable, but because recovery is really, really difficult. Your behaviors helped you cope with trauma and incredible emotional pain. They allowed you to numb out and they kept you afloat when you felt like you were drowning. Letting go of something that helped you survive for so long is not easy. And it doesn’t happen over the course of a few days or months. It’s terrifying, painful, incredibly challenging, and it takes time. So be compassionate with yourself and your process. You’re doing the best you can to fight this and recover and it’s all you can ask of yourself. 

2. Use the lapse as a learning experience. 

You can’t go back in time and change the fact that you lapsed, but you can choose how you respond to it. You can wallow in self-pity, beat yourself up, and use what happened as an excuse to continue using behaviors. Or you can choose to use what happened as a learning experience. You can look at the lapse as an opportunity to collect important information about what triggers you to use behaviors and what you need in the moment to avoid a future lapse.

3. Be curious.

Judging yourself for having a lapse doesn’t get you anywhere. It makes you feel worse and it keeps you stuck. Instead of feeding the cycle of self-hatred, treat yourself with compassionate curiosity and start asking questions:

What need did you have in the moment that wasn’t being met? Were you feeling lonely? Sad? Depressed? Angry? Hurt? Disappointed? Rejected? Invisible? Inadequate? When you turned to behaviors to cope, what were you really looking for? Did you need to feel safe? Did you need a way to express your feelings? Did you need to feel seen and heard? Did you need a distraction? Comfort? Control? How could you have gotten that need met in a non self-destructive way? And how can you take care of yourself in the future when these triggers come up again?

You don’t have to know the answer to all of these questions right now, but it’s important to start exploring and being curious.

4. Treat yourself like you would a friend.

If you had a friend or loved one who lapsed, you wouldn’t put them down. You wouldn’t call them a failure. You wouldn’t see them as worthless. And you wouldn’t discount all the progress they had made. You would treat them with kindness and compassion. You would give them a hug, remind them of how far they’ve come, and reassure them that just because they had one lapse doesn’t mean they can’t turn things around and get back on track.

Well, you’re not an exception. You deserve to be treated with the same forgiveness and love you would so willingly give to anyone else who was struggling. So when your self-hating thoughts get loud and tell you that you’re a failure for lapsing, challenge them. And if in the moment it’s difficult to be nice to yourself, think of what you would say to someone you care about and apply those positive counters to your own thoughts.

5. Reach out.

Don’t isolate and withdraw. It may feel safer, but it only perpetuates the pain you feel and keeps you stuck. In order to get back on track, you have to talk about what happened. You have to be honest with yourself and your support network. You have to give yourself permission to ask for help, use your voice, and make your needs known. Keeping secrets keeps us sick. If we want to heal, we have to break the silence.

6. Get extra support.

If you’re struggling, you deserve to ask for help. Denying yourself extra support when things start going down hill isn’t noble or self-sacrificing. It’s self-destruction, and it’s a sure-fire way to put yourself at risk for another lapse. There is nothing shameful about asking for more help. It doesn’t make you weak. It doesn’t make you a disappointment. And it doesn’t make you a burden. It makes you someone with the courage to be honest and the strength to make recovery a priority. It makes you determined and admirable and brave. It’s self-care and in order to get back on track and heal, it’s imperative.

7. Focus on progress, not perfection. 

One lapse does NOT discount all of the days you went without using behaviors. It doesn’t make you weak or incapable or inadequate. It doesn’t make you a failure or erase your progress, and it definitely doesn’t mean you can’t get better. All a lapse means is that you were hurting so deeply and didn’t know how else to cope. It was a bad decision, but it doesn’t make you a bad person. It makes you human. The lapse was just a bump in your road to recovery, but it doesn’t mean you have to start all over. You’re just continuing your journey right where you left off. So don’t give up. You willget to where you need to be in your own time. Until then, breathe, be patient, and trust that as long as you keep pushing forward, reaching out for help, and picking yourself back up, no matter how many times you lapse, you can and will recover.

(via comfort-box)

I learned the hard way

I learned the hard way
“I learned the hard way that I cannot always count on others to respect my feelings, even if I respect theirs. Being a good person doesn’t guarantee that others will be good people, too. You only have control over yourself and how you choose to be as a person. As for others, you can only choose to accept them or walk away.”

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That is being naked

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“It’s easy to take off your clothes and have sex. People do it all the time. But opening up your soul to someone, letting them into your spirit, thoughts, fears, future, hopes, dreams… that is being naked.”

The journey

the journey

 

Maybe the journey isn’t so much about becoming anything. Maybe it’s about un-becoming everything that isn’t really you, so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.

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Shark Bait – Motivational short story

Shark Bait - Motivational short story

During a research experiment a marine biologist placed a shark into a large holding tank and then released several small bait fish into the tank.

As you would expect, the shark quickly swam around the tank, attacked and ate the smaller fish.

The marine biologist then inserted a strong piece of clear fiberglass into the tank, creating two separate partitions. She then put the shark on one side of the fiberglass and a new set of bait fish on the other.

Again, the shark quickly attacked. This time, however, the shark slammed into the fiberglass divider and bounced off. Undeterred, the shark kept repeating this behavior every few minutes to no avail. Meanwhile, the bait fish swam around unharmed in the second partition. Eventually, about an hour into the experiment, the shark gave up.

This experiment was repeated several dozen times over the next few weeks. Each time, the shark got less aggressive and made fewer attempts to attack the bait fish, until eventually the shark got tired of hitting the fiberglass divider and simply stopped attacking altogether.

The marine biologist then removed the fiberglass divider, but the shark didn’t attack. The shark was trained to believe a barrier existed between it and the bait fish, so the bait fish swam wherever they wished, free from harm.

The moral: Many of us, after experiencing setbacks and failures, emotionally give up and stop trying. Like the shark in the story, we believe that because we were unsuccessful in the past, we will always be unsuccessful. In other words, we continue to see a barrier in our heads, even when no ‘real’ barrier exists between where we are and where we want to go

Heal the wounds of your past

Until you heal the wounds of your past, you are going to bleed

 

Until you heal the wounds of your past, you are going to bleed. You can bandage the bleeding with food, with alcohol, with drugs, with work, with cigarettes, with sex; But eventually, it will all ooze through and stain your life. You must find the strength to open the wounds, Stick your hands inside, pull out the core of the pain that is holding you in your past, the memories and make peace with them. ~Iyanla Vanzant

The Wise Old Man – Motivational story

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A wealthy man requested an old scholar to wean his son away from his bad habits. The scholar took the youth for a stroll through a garden. Stopping suddenly he asked the boy to pull out a tiny plant growing there.
The youth held the plant between his thumb and forefinger and pulled it out. The old man then asked him to pull out a slightly bigger plant. The youth pulled hard and the plant came out, roots and all. “Now pull out that one,” said the old man pointing to a bush. The boy had to use all his strength to pull it out.
“Now take this one out,” said the old man, indicating a guava tree. The youth grasped the trunk and tried to pull it out. But it would not budge. “It’s impossible,” said the boy, panting with the effort.
“So it is with bad habits,” said the sage. “When they are young it is easy to pull them out but when they take hold they cannot be uprooted.”
The session with the old man changed the boy’s life.
Moral: Don’t wait for Bad Habits to grow in you, drop them while you have control over it else they will get control you.

It’s SELF RESPECT

It's SELF RESPECT

Sometimes you have to try not to care, No matter how much you do, because sometimes you can mean nothing to someone who means so much to you….
Its not PRIDE.
It’s SELF RESPECT…

She doesn’t trust easily

She doesn’t trust easily

 

She doesn’t trust easily- you can see that in the distance she creates between herself and everyone around her, but she has much love to offer, and you can see it in the kindness that’s in the smiles she gives out to everyone around her. She has millions of chaotic galaxies of thoughts, thousands of tangled up worlds of words and places in her mind, and you can see it in the way her eyes always seem lost, like they are somewhere else. She always wants to be somewhere else, it shows in the way she’s always rushing and moving, the way she’s always restless. Life never went easy on her, and she didn’t go easy on herself either. She is strong and you can see it in her eyes, you can sense it in her voice. She believes that her body can physically rebuild and heal itself. I think that’s because she knew how to recover by herself after life had broken her. She knows how it’s like to be under-appreciated. So if you can’t see the beauty in her quirks, if you don’t think that maybe she might be a little piece of magic, don’t you dare and say that she is just a girl; because she’s a masterpiece.