Are You Treating Yourself with Loving-Kindness?

By on April 9, 2011

By Linda Menesez, M.S.W., L.C.S.W. – 

How do you treat yourself?  Do you treat yourself as you would a very dear friend?  Is your self-talk kind and gentle?  Are you patient with your mistakes and shortcomings?  Do you encourage yourself as you would a loved one?

As women, we are socialized from the time we are very small children to attend to the needs of others.  Most of us have learned our lessons very well – in fact a little too well.  We are often so focused on the needs of others that we put our own needs at the very bottom of our “to-do list,” if they’re on there at all!

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Over time, our physical and emotional health and well-being begin to suffer.  Please know that self-care is not selfish!  In fact, it’s very, very far from being selfish.  If we do not take care of ourselves in a very kind, loving way, we run the risk of becoming truly overwhelmed with life, and sometimes unable to cope.  If you don’t put gas in your car, the gas tank eventually becomes empty.  How far do you think you can drive with an empty gas tank?  The same is true with us.  We can’t give indefinitely, without becoming empty.  When we’re empty, we don’t function – at least not well.

What fills you up?  What makes you feel peaceful, relaxed, and fulfilled?  How often do you take time for the things that make you feel joyful?  Each of us is unique and special!  What nurtures one person may not have the same effect on another.  Go on a journey of self-discovery and find out what your secret heart longs for.  Give yourself permission to spend time and energy meeting your own needs.  Make an appointment with yourself on a daily basis!  Even a half hour spent walking in nature, reading a good book, quietly meditating, or talking with a friend, etc. can fill you up in wonderful ways!

You will have so much more life energy to share with others if your own needs have been honored.  Do it for yourself!  Do it for all who love you!  Do it for all the people you love!  You will become more filled with a loving, kind, generous spirit.  Your whole being will shine with peace and joy!

Linda Menesez, M.S.W., L.C.S.W., Counseling in Santa Barbara,,, [email protected]

About Linda Menesez

Linda Menesez, M.S.W., L.C.S.W.: I’m a Santa Barbara counselor, helping busy people learn ways to lower their stress and improve their overall quality of life. I specialize in empowering women, who focus too much on the needs of others, to recognize the value of self-care and nurturing for better mind, body, and spirit wellness. Her website:

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Are You Treating Yourself with Loving-Kindness?