"The best way to nurture children's inner lives
is by taking care of our own inner selves
for their sake."
Nurturing ourselves may well be one of our greatest challenges in life. As women, we tend to put everyone else first, thinking that our role is to please and accommodate our loved ones and our jobs before tending to our own emotional, physical, or spiritual needs. For many, it takes a "special" day like Mother's Day or our birthday to allow others to DO for us! But when our habit is to put others first, the result is that we are stressed out and depleted and have little left to give. However, when we make the time to take care of our own needs, we have so much more to share with our families and our jobs!
Eda LeShan says, “When we truly care for ourselves, it becomes possible to care far more profoundly about other people. The more alert and sensitive we are to our own needs, the more loving and generous we can be toward others."
It is important that we find ways to nourish ourselves, to listen to our bodies and to tap into healthy resources like Jin Shin Jyutsu to maintain a sense of balance and to nurture our spirit and well-being.
It might be helpful to think of caring for yourself as if you were your own child.
According to Lauren Mackler, author of 7 Steps to Nurturing Your Inner Self, "A great technique for treating yourself better is by developing your Inner Nurturing Parent. Imagine you had a little child in your care. You'd make every effort to keep her healthy and safe; to love and support her; to be forgiving of her mistakes, her inevitable slips; and to let her know how precious and important she is. That's what a loving parent does. Only, in this case, you're the parent and the child."
Mary Burmeister, the mother of Jin Shin Jyutsu encouraged her students to, "BE your own testimony." Think of nurturing yourself as setting the example for your children and those you care about by giving to yourself at least as much as you give to others. Love is the great healer. The capacity for self-love and the ability to self nurture is bigger than you and me, it will bring balance and peace to the world.
"We've got this gift of love,
but love is like a precious plant.
You can't just accept it
and leave it in the cupboard
or just think it's going to get on by itself.
You've got to keep watering it.
You've got to really look after it
and nurture it."