You might remember an old post of mine from 2018, it has been mercilessly edited and re-posted here.
You will need
pen/pencil or crayons
We are like two sides of a coin.
Imagine a relationship
where love understands
your human failings
and loves you anyway.
Its movement is ebb and flow, back and forth,
reciprocal and collaborative;
perfect love of: lover and beloved
or parent and child or friend to friend…
watch the interchange of communication;
mirrored smiles and empathy;
tears, expressions and mannerisms;
they anticipate, wait, and pause…
hang in, hang out
hang around for each other.
Both the ‘beloved’ and ‘lover’
are inside. You are like a coin.
A coin has both ‘heads’ and ‘tails’…
You have the capacity to be both the parent and child;
helper and helpless, courageous and week, encourager and discouraged, etc.
You have the capacity for both sides of the coin inside you.
How do you view yourself?
do you experience yourself as inadequate, a failure, or shameful
Do you bully yourself into compliance and submission by shaming and blaming
or can you love, support and encourage yourself?
What loving message would you as the beloved on the one side of the coin need from you, the lover on the other side of the coin?
Creative ideas to try:
- Draw what feel like when you care for yourself or when you do. It could be symbolic or realistic: making marks (textures, line, colours, shapes and shading) is a way of expressing yourself. It is a visual language: you could play around with. Drawing doesn’t have to be realistic. Just express your inner feelings anything goes. Explore your visual language just by using marks or colour.
- Brainstorm – write as many words or phrases down as you can think of, and use word association to help find ideas of how you can love yourself more/ be loved by yourself. Remember there are different parts of yourself that need different things. for example, it might be about boundaries, routines, alone time, health; the ideas are endless.
- Journal or use free writing (with no inhibitions) for 15 minutes; writing down what ever comes to mind and see what comes up for you. This is sometimes called free association. You might be pleasantly surprised.
After doing one or all of these exercises notice: What stands out to you? What might have come up for you? What do you need?
Write a short message of encouragement for yourself that you can refer to it when you need it.