'I love me more than I love you'

I saw this tattoo on a pal the other day: “I love me more than I love you”. It made me smile and it felt supportive and freeing! Growing up I was taught that pleasing others was the priority, the fact that it was at the cost of myself didn’t seem to matter. I find this truly terrifying. No one was making sure my truth was supported. In fact, I had to fight to retain even a sliver of it. As a result, I struggle with having guilt-free boundaries. I’ve found that you can’t set a boundary and take care of someone else’s feelings at the same time. So who comes first? Do we feel overly responsible for the feelings and needs of others and neglect our own?

People pleasing and co-dependency stifle the soul. They cloud our connection to our true self. Guilt and feeling undeserving weaken us and interfere with our ability to live our best life.  I can feel it reflected in my spine – a weak spot that craves support and strength.

Recently, my family was visiting and I had a really hard time speaking up and taking the space I needed. For whatever reason, I often seem to be the one making waves in my family. It is soooo uncomfortable, and I feel terribly guilty for being different, for not being okay with what they all seem okay with. It has been a big lesson for me to have the strength to stand alone, to validate how I’m feeling even if no one else understands, agrees, or likes it. I’ve gotta be me! I’m continually learning how to have a strong backbone, to have some grit!

The thing is, I don’t do them any favors by feeling guilty and repressing my truth because then I just want to shut them out and run away. By setting healthy boundaries, I have less need to put up walls. If I can trust myself to have guilt-free boundaries, speak up, and take care of my needs then I will be free, strong, and safe no matter where I go. So my mantra this week is, “I am free of guilt, I speak up, and I take care of my needs! Yeah!”

Lies and repression weaken our spines and us. Do we feel supported in being our true selves, in honoring our unique sensitivity and following our inner compass?  Sometimes we need to stand alone. No one needs to get us but us. Sometimes it feels like it takes all the strength we can muster to stand up for ourselves. It requires bravery and a deep trust in our own truth. But it’s worth the risk!

“We must recognize that each of us is a unique individual with distinct emotions, needs, and preferences. Healthy boundaries are necessary to allow your true self to emerge.”

-Carl Benedict at serenityonlinetherapy.com

 I support us all in having a deep sense of self-respect and a strong backbone!