“Your task is not to seek love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” ~Rumi
This morning I woke up wanting to wear hand-knit socks.
And then a million-and-one things happened!
Things like this:
- My daughter woke up early.
- I cuddled with her, and groggily “enjoyed” a gargantuan mug of coffee.
- My husband took a shower and shaved.
- My husband announced (while looking super-cute in the living room doorway wearing boxer-briefs and an incredulous expression) that the sink had clogged. Again.
- I sighed. REAL LOUD.
- I got dressed. Quickly.
- I had a mini-epiphany.
And that brings us up to speed, because oddly, the epiphany IS about getting dressed!
So. Here’s me, standing in a dimly-lit bedroom at daybreak, messy hair, brows furrowed, quickly selecting my clothes for the Monday.
And I thought:
Okay, I’d like to treat myself to a day wearing my new hand-knit socks!
Last time I wore my beautiful new socks,
One of them snagged a nail.
And while this nail didn’t cause a proper hole,
I could feel the impending doom of a heel-hole,
And I thought…
I should SAVE the socks. For a special day.
Like when I go out. And I want to impress people.
First of all, people in real life don’t ooze excitement over knit socks.
What was I imagining?
In that microsecond,
in my jammies,
in front of my red Ikea dresser?
That I would be strolling through the Michael’s craft flower section,
looking radiant with my dazzling combo of knit-socks and tan Sperrys,
and a woman pushing a red cart across the aisle would gasp:
“OH MY GOD, LOOK AT THOSE HAND KNIT SOCKS!!! YOU’RE THE COOLEST PERSON IN THIS DEPRESSING ASSHAT OF A CRAFT STORE (that even the coolest people do shop in but would never admit)!”
Like… obviously that scenario isn’t going to happen.
(Nor do I wish for it to happen. Because that would be… super awkward.)
But, I was daydreaming this scenario. In real life.
Standing half-dressed, in my 6 a.m. bedroom, debating whether to wear THE SOCKS.
And I’m hit with this big question:
Wait, am I depriving myself?
WHY am I depriving myself of hand-knit socks that I painstakingly knit?
I knit them!
Why won’t I just wear the damn socks?!
And I wondered… Do I deprive myself? Like.. regularly?
What else am I missing out on?
And I’m still standing there, holding the knit socks, staring down at my drawer… and realized:
Oh my god.
I do this with UNDERWEAR, TOO.
I frequently pick up a pair of “good” underwear, then put it down in exchange for a more “practical” pair.
An ugly pair.
A pair that doesn’t fit me well and looks baggy after 10 minutes.
Because hey, I’m just staying home all day with my baby and no one will be here to admire my butt in the good underwear,
plus I’m going to get covered in baby food and dog hair anyways,
so I SHOULD SAVE the good underwear for a special day.
When my butt can shine line-free in all it’s curvy glory.
What the actual f*ck is my problem?
Allllll this anxiety flashes in a moment as I select my morning underwear. And not just today. Not once, not twice:
And the only consequence I can think of for wearing the good socks or the good underwear is this:
They might get dirty!
I might have to do laundry!
(And let’s face it: I’m gonna be doing laundry like 5 times a week for the rest of my life.
Cuz I’m a Mom now.)
SO, I challenged myself to do three things:
- Wear the good hand-knit socks (and the underwear that looks good on my butt) TODAY.
- When I find myself standing in front of the dresser with a major dilemma on my hands, look down at the item I feel I should wear or of guilt or punishment or whatever-the-f*ck and throw it in the nearest TRASH. It’s obviously stressing me out and no one needs to stress over their under clothes.
- Jot down the moments in which I realize I’ve deprived myself of a simple pleasure. My hope is that eventually I’ll be able to find healthy ways to indulge myself instead of deprive myself. Plus, this act of journaling might help me build a more proactive mindset of self-care!
I’m wondering if this whole “deprivation” thing applies to you, too?
Do you avoid simple pleasures out of misguided martydrom?
How do you fix this pattern of self-neglect?
What other things could WE be enjoying?
I’m excited to find out!
Please share your secrets in the comments below!
…BUT WAIT… THERE’S MORE!
I made another list.
I know, I’m sorry, this blog post is way too long.
BUT, I made a list of small challenges.
Easy ways to give yourself PERMISSION to enjoy life without spending money or doing anything BIG.
It’s the little things, folks.
I hope these ideas might inspire you (and me!) to be more mindful of indulging yourself in simple pleasures. So here’goes:
(And then I’m peacing out for the night.
K, Love you all!
Challenges for YOU to Give Yourself PERMISSION to Indulge Yourself and Enjoy Life!
Give yourself permission to embrace your own beauty:
- Print out a picture that you like of yourself and put if on the fridge. (Bonus points if no one else is in the picture with you!)
- Share a selfie and actually state publicly that you look amazing.
- Take a compliment. Like actually just take the compliment. Say something like: “Aw, thanks, I feel pretty!”
Give yourself permission to present your best self:
- Wear something that makes you feel pretty, cozy, sexy, whatever you’re in the mood for. (Even if it might get dirty right away)
- Try a new hairstyle. (I personally LOVE this video: 5 Quick & Easy Vintage Hairstyles for Natural/Straight Hair. YOU’RE WELCOME.)
- Take time to do those obnoxious physical care things like: remove nail polish before it looks like a disaster, dry your hair instead of feeling clammy with it dripping down your back all day, etc. etc. etccccccc……….
Give yourself permission to enjoy guilty pleasures:
- Blast music you like even if it’s not “cool” (For me, this is country music radio. I’m serious. LOL!)
- Bake something that YOU love, even if the rest of your family doesn’t love it.
- Watch a tv show that only you like. (Still going strong with Grey’s Anatomy. Who’s with me?!)
- Play video games. (K, this is more my Husband’s thing. But I actually encourage him to reserve time for video games. It’s ok!)
- Get lost in a Pinterest hole, with no intention of doing or making a damn thing
- Snoop around on Instagram for a while and just enjoy it.
Give yourself permission to take time for simple pleasures:
- Pick flowers for yourself
- Go on a walk around your block
- Prepare a food you find beautiful (For me, this is green beans! I LOVE snapping a big bowl of green beans.)
- Do flow activities like weeding, scrubbing floors, winding yarn. Anything that feels meditative and gets your focus on the present moment.
- Write a haiku (I love to do this when I’m too overwhelmed to journal! It’s a fun challenge and it forces me to pay attention to and then describe my surroundings.)
- Do a crossword puzzle, and don’t stress if you’re bad at them (like me)
Give yourself permission to reserve alone time:
- Say no to invitations, and don’t give a million excuses. Just say “It makes me feel special that you asked, but honestly I need some alone time!”
- Do nothing for a few minutes. Listen to the noises. Pay attention to smells. Enjoy the breeze, if you’re outside.
- Poop without your phone. Seriously. Try it. You’ll feel bored, in a good way. LOL!
Give yourself permission to be vulnerable in positive ways
- Cry during a movie. (Bonus points if you cry in front of someone! …I always try to be a hard-ass and not cry. Idk why.)
- Make bad jokes. (I recently realized I sensor my jokes a lot. Time to unleash more of my COMEDIC BRILLIANCE, YO.)
- Get swept up in a moment of intimacy with your partner. (I am not a touchy-feely person, so sometimes I forget to just enjoy my husband’s onslaughts of affection! Which sounds mean, but if you’re not a touch-feely person, you know what I’m saying. Just enjoy it once in a while.)
Looking forward to hearing from you in the comments!
Because if you made it this far, chances are this long-ass blog post resonated with you.
Seriously though, thanks so much for reading.
I’m off to knit and have a cup of lavender tea.