An online friend told me recently how overwhelmed she was by her job and family responsibilities. She was on the brink of shutting down the daycare business she ran because she was miserably tired every day and the very thought of continuing such a demanding schedule exhausted her. But she felt she had to keep grinding away because her family’s needs were more important than her own.
I told her that taking care of everyone else without also taking care of herself was doing a disservice to everyone in her life. I asked her to take a step back and think about how her feeling so perpetually sleep-deprived and miserable was affecting the quality of her daily interactions with her husband, her children and her customers. Even worse, slogging on so “selflessly” would mean she’d have even less to offer in the years to come.
I said that living selflessly is a noble cause but it’s guaranteed to backfire unless you also practice enlightened self-care. If she ate poorly, didn’t exercise, slept too little and ignored her emotional, social and spiritual needs, she would make herself sick. Ultimately, she would be sacrificing the very thing she was sacrificing for: the well-being of her family. It was not in their best interests to have a wife and mother whose mental and physical health were deteriorating and who would eventually experience a health crisis. Then who would take care of the caretaker? Ultimately, the more she dedicated herself to living for everyone else, the more likely that everyone else would end up focusing on her, and for all the wrong reasons.
Devoting every moment to serving others is neither advisable nor possible. You must choose love for yourself as well by engaging in enlightened self-care. Neglect your own body, mind and spirit, and you limit your capacity to lovingly care for others. Worse yet, inadequately caring for your own needs can project a conviction of low self-worth, which can foster an environment in which others expect your service and take you for granted.
Choosing to love yourself does not mean adopting a mindset of, “I love me first,” but rather, “I love me also.” Loving yourself first and taking care of yourself first are two separate issues. “Loving yourself first” may be interpreted as loving yourself more than others, a distortion of the core message that you should love yourself as much as you love your loved ones. Yes, you need to take care of yourself before you can take care of others, but you can love yourself and your loved ones simultaneously.
You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.
ABOUT PHIL BOLSTA
If you feel more stressed than blessed . . . if you have more confusion than clarity about how to live your beliefs . . . if you long to live a richer, happier, more meaningful life . . . you will find a wealth of insight and guidance in Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World.
Through God’s Eyes is a road map for living a more peaceful, beautiful life. It’s the only book that explains how dozens of spiritual principles interact, how to weave them together into a cohesive worldview, and how to practically apply this spiritual wisdom to daily life.
Readers everywhere are discovering that when you challenge yourself to look through God’s eyes, the world around you changes, and so do you.
Who will benefit from reading Through God’s Eyes?
Anyone who is on a spiritual path, or wants to be.
Anyone who loves life, or wants to learn how to.
Anyone who is happy, or wants to be happier.
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SEE EVERY MOMENT AS A GIFT
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Here is a two-minute video introduction to Through God’s Eyes.
• an overview of the book
• the complete table of contents
• the Foreword by Caroline Myss
• my Introduction
• chapter excerpts
• a sample end-of-chapter story
• endorsements from authors and thought leaders
Just click on the link below to download your free PDF sampler!
THROUGH GOD’S EYES PDF SAMPLER
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Phil’s eBook, The Logic of Living a Spiritual Life: Supporting a Life of Faith Through Logic and Reason, is now available for 99 cents.
Order it at GodIsLogical.com.
In this eBook, you’ll find answers to questions like:
• What is the cornerstone of a spiritual life, and why?
• What is the secret to liberating yourself from other people’s judgments and expectations?
• How do you reconcile the “free will vs. Divine Will” conundrum?
• Why is there an exception to “Everything happens for a reason”?
Those who worship logic instead of God are only half right. Not only is it logical to believe in God and to live a faith-based life, the existence of a loving, benevolent God that governs all creation is perhaps the only systematic worldview that explains every aspect of life.
Phil is also the author of Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything, a collection of 45 inspiring, life-changing stories from prominent authors and thought leaders he interviewed. The roster of storytellers includes Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Neale Donald Walsch, Caroline Myss, Larry Dossey, Rachel Naomi Remen, Bernie Siegel, Dean Ornish, and Christiane Northrup. Sixty Seconds has been translated into four languages: Italian, German, Spanish, and Portuguese. Reading this book is like spending a few minutes face to face with each of the contributors and listening to their personal stories.
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Learn more by visiting the official Sixty Seconds website.
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Here is a three-minute video introduction to Sixty Seconds.