Learn to love yourself first. Treat yourself as you would a loved one or close friend e.g. trust, congratulate and encourage yourself. Treat your body as your temple; it is your best and only unconditional friend in life. Apply all the positive ‘self-‘experiences: self-acceptance, self-care, self-help, self-assurance, self-esteem, self-regulate, etc. You are creating the energy necessary to embrace change and be resilient. Cultivate relationships for they are the only thing that truly matters in life.
When you experience adversities it is all too easy to neglect your own needs in favor of overeating, alcohol, sleep deprivation, skipping exercise, caregiving, etc. Yet this is the time when you should be developing your self-nurturing skills to boost your overall health and create resilience. Self-nurture is of particular importance to caregivers to ensure they do not fall victim to poor health and can resume a joyful life when their caregiver role is no longer required.
Self-acceptance and self-love are the first steps in nurturing and the most challenging, particularly if you have lived a life of self-doubt and self-criticism. Replace the ‘blame game’ (shame, regrets, etc) in your head with forgiveness and nurture compassion for the fact that you are human and flawed along with the rest of humanity. Learn the lesson in stead and then let all blame go. For as the saying goes “If you don’t love yourself how can you expect someone else to?”
Learn to treat yourself as you would your loved one or best friend. With random acts of kindness and appreciation you will support yourself. Allow yourself to relax when you are tired, treat yourself to gifts, and respond to your negative thoughts with the same heartening advice you would give your loved ones. Nurture the small child in yourself, and give yourself a hug. Congratulate yourself for a job well done as you would congratulate your best friend; trust that you will always do the best for yourself just as you would trust the advice of you loved one. No one cares more for you than you, trust your inner teacher.
When you care for yourself you are energizing yourself and in this state you will respond to adversities in a resilient manner. You will need the energy to embrace the changes that loss will inevitably bring. Nurture a healthy body and psyche. Adopt daily relaxation techniques to reduce stress and its muscle tension stored in your body. Take action to strengthen your body, minimize physical tension and thereby instill a sense of control in your life.
Nurture is the nature of our amazing biology and science is proving that we can play a central role in our health by nurturing though our nutrition, life-style, thoughts and feelings than ever imagined before (e.g. Super Genes by Deepak Chopra). Self-regulating our thoughts alone can help to steady our emotions and avoid draining our energy which acts as a moderator on our daily stress.
Some of the health modalities you may benefit from are: nature’s healing, Naturopathic Medicine, Physiotherapy, Acupuncture, Chinese Traditional Medicine, Ayurvedic Medicine, massage, psychic medium, hypnosis, exercise, Yoga, counseling, energy healing, breath work, guided imagery, spiritual healing, meditation connection to your divine spirit, herbal medicine, healing touch, Therapeutic Yoga, journal and life writing, learning (self-help books) and nutrition and last but not least Life Coaching.
Cultivate a strong social network. Having caring and supportive people around you acts as a safe harbour during adversities. Having meaningful and open conversations with people you trust can alleviate pain and allow you to gain clarity about what is most needed.
Science has shown that connection and belonging are essential for a healthy and happy life. Humans need close connections to be healthy (e.g. strong family ties are one of the primary reasons the people of Okinawa, Japan have incredible longevity despite being one of the poorest area in the country).
"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." - John Lennon