I am my favourite

What would you say if someone would asked you; “who is your favourite person?” If I speak for myself I would name maybe my mum or dad or Nelson Mandela or Dalai Lama. But I would never think about myself. The thought of this makes me laugh. No, I am not my favourite. And if someone answered “I am my favourite” I might have thought; “Pfff,.. What an arrogant person”.

But why did I really think like that and why is it so difficult for most of us to really like ourselves, or even love ourselves. And on top of that, to not be ashamed of it.

If I look at my own experience I would say that it has something to do with this constant feeling of incompleteness. There is always something that needs to be improved or needs to be achieved or needs to be fixed. But once you are able to improve yourself on one skill or you “fix” something about yourself, you immediately find something new that needs to be done. So it feels like an endless journey of finding the right pieces to complete yourself.

The last few years I struggled with the question; What is it that is really going to make me happy? First I thought that I needed to travel more and that I had to move to another place and that I needed another job. All of these things happened. I travelled more, moved to a beautiful city where I got my own apartment and I got a new, challenging job. But once all of these changes were complete, I didn’t feel happy at all. How on earth could that be possible? I started to think about it a lot and at some point I truly believed that there was something wrong with me. Because I literally had everything in my life; A wonderful family, caring friends, a good job a nice house, good health conditions. What else do you need to be happy? I just couldn’t find the answer to that question for a very long time.

The last 6 months I spend a lot of time with myself. And with spending time with myself I really mean time with myself.  Of course I did watch a movie or read books  or spend time in the gym as well. But I really started to appreciate the time with myself more and more. Just me and myself doing nothing or practicing yoga, with full awareness. I really tried to be very kind to myself in this period of time, which was not always very easy. Because I was not working, I had a lot of “free time” so there was also a part inside of me that was telling me that I should not “waste” my time by doing “nothing”, or just practicing yoga. And that I should “work” on my future, make a plan and find a job as soon as possible.

But eventually this kind and sweet person inside me became stronger than the critical and more negative person inside me. And now I realise that I really needed that kind person to tell me that everything is already good as it is and that I should try to listen more to myself instead of comparing myself with others. This person also brought me to India to follow a Yoga Teacher Training and to start doing things that just feel right.

The first week when I was in India I noticed that I had a hard time connecting and socializing with other people. I really felt the need to be alone with myself and to take a step back. It just didn’t feel good and natural to socialize with others while there was someone (me) asking for attention. At that point I didn’t really realize that, I just followed my feelings. The first weeks were emotionally and mentally a big struggle with some intense releases. But after these releases I felt lighter and more open and I also felt that I wanted to socialize more with others, listen to others and hear their stories. So eventually that happened and I got to know a lot of beautiful people. And I really felt that I could easily connect with them, feel a pure love for them and comfort them when needed.

One evening when I was preparing my yoga class I found some beautiful words that describe perfectly what the most important lesson is that I have learned.

“I learned that the spiritual journey had nothing to do with being nice. It was about being real, being authentic and having boundaries. Honoring my space first, others second. And in this space of self-care, being nice just happened. It flowed not motivated by fear, but it flowed by love.”

For me these words describe the importance of self love and self care in a very pure and honest way. Because how often are we not busy with being nice and kind to other people, helping other people and listening to other people. But I experienced that when you are not there for yourself in the first place, it’s really hard to be there (with all your love) for someone else. Therefore I think that we should never underestimate the power of the love inside ourselves. And once you find it and you are able to give some of that love to yourself first you will see that everything else starts to flow naturally.

And please don’t get me wrong in this story. Listening to others and caring for others is something that we should keep on doing as much as we can. But just keep in mind that you also deserve some of that love and care yourself. And as I said before; We first need to truly love ourselves in order to share this pure love with the rest of the world and to really connect with everything and everyone around us.

So next time, don’t be ashamed to say “I am my favorite”

With love,

Nicole

This post is also available in: Spanish