Self care, love and acceptance – how to live it and reinforce messages

This post is part of the ongoing series “how to love and accept yourself as you are” – you can find all the posts here and catch up any time.

Along the journey of this series I have touched on many ideas and resources that all work to help us to live a life where we love, care for, and accept ourselves as we are.

If you had a long way to travel on this journey please do not expect that reading a few blog posts, listening to positive music and adding in self care will lead to instant and long lasting change.

Change requires a practice. It is ongoing effort, correcting negative talk or feelings of unworthiness. It is about learning to set boundaries, determining who and what has a say and impact on your day to day life, who has feedback that you should ignore, what kind of environment is best for supporting your life your way.

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Here are 18 ideas to keep this journey going (some discussed in previous posts / linked):

  • art journal / creative expression – no appointment necessary, minimal expenses, keep it simple or go messy and creative.  You will be amazed how connected our mind and creativity are. You can reinforce positive messages, explore negative things that need to be worked out or let go of.
  • podcasts – positive use of time, tons of great interviews and topics covered
  • music – i shared a playlist created just for this series – check it out if you missed it
  • rituals and routines – a great way to make lots of progress is to build desired changes into your day to day life so they become engrained and automatic. If you think writing will help, set up a regular time and commit. If a self care practice has been elusive, lock it into your week.
  • apps – there are apps for mindfulness, scheduling, reminders (you can set up a daily reminder that tells you something positive)
  • vision boards and vision cards vision work is one of my favourite tools for keeping what is important to me in focus – gives clarity, helps set intentions and reinforces how you want to live
  • 10 dots – Louise Hay describes this approach to really locking in the messages of affirmations by placing 10 sticker dots around your home and car etc and when you see them you say your affirmation. You could adapt this to anything – great potential.
  • quotes – find ones that support ideas you want to reinforce, use them for inspiration, journal prompts, reminders
  • say what you mean – a big part of setting up boundaries and standing tall in your own power is to get clear on how you feel and think and then sharing exactly that. Don’t send mixed signals when a “no” is what you need to say, be clear on your needs, stand up for yourself, express your ideas and then hold them tight even when someone else wants to poo poo your vision.
  • affirmations – write your own, use ones online, join in an affirmation lettering challenge (@dorisfullgrabe does them on instagram periodically including right now). pair with 10 dots as above
  • reading material – what you choose to read can have a great impact on how you live. Ditch the news source that just riles you up, choose articles that educate but still lifts you up – solution focused, positive stories, inspiring journeys. There are tons of websites and books that can lift you up and help you grow.
  • classes – online or in person, take a class that will reinforce these ideas or that is part of your personal growth (anything you are curious about has a class available somewhere, many are free or inexpensive online, check your community resources as well)
  • jewelry and accessories – this is why I started Inner Compass Designs – truly after writing for 3+ years I wanted physical reminders. Some of us need visual reinforcement so what we read and hear will sink in. Use code reinforceit for 20% off any order until December 31 (just for you guys xx) Wearing reminders gives you many chances in a day to connect with the messages.
  • decorations – where do you spend a lot of time? home, office, studio, etc – be intentional in what you have around you. You can find ways to connect to messages or how you live your life. If you are open to it try creating an altar or special sacred place where you come to connect deeply.
  • online challenges – these offer community support and connection, learning opportunities, ways to stretch yourself  or work specifically on one idea. We had a great time in November with the challenge for this series. I am currently doing Susannah Conway’s December reflections for the 3rd year in a row, I do lettering challenges, shared my daily art on instagram with the #createeveryday community, have the online community for Get Messy Art Journal, and the group i created on Facebook to support those with a word of the year.
  • who do you listen to? – I love this idea from Elizabeth Gilbert. She created a little card that she carries in her wallet. On it is the very short list of people in her super inner circle who she has deemed a person she will listen to. If they are not on the list (reviewers, Facebook commenters, random people in her life etc) she does not give weight to their opinions on her life. If you want to pursue writing a book, but your neighbour thinks that is crazy (but she is not an author or in publishing) do not give her any input, simply move on and stay in your bubble.
  • journal with or without prompts – Try morning pages a la Julia Cameron, sign up for free journal prompts or browse pinterest (I have a whole board on all types of journaling).
  • explore! – get to know yourself, try things on (self care ideas and my creative self care pinterest board), stay open, the more you do and try the better you know yourself. The better you know yourself the easier it is to trust your gut, stand firm in your boundaries and be okay with yourself (dare I say even start to love yourself for the crocheting, cat loving, introvert who loves to go to book club each month)

Next week will be the final post in this series. I have loved bringing it to you slowly over the months and hope you gained from it.

What is one thing you have started doing or introduced into your life since I started this series? Take action, make changes and live your life your way.

Love and light,

Deb xx

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