Being Aware of Our Own Needs

Do you really take care of yourself? Do you put yourself first or do you sacrifice your own need for those of others? Certainly, it is hard to meet all our own needs when we have young children as we don’t often have time for ourselves. All the same it is important to be aware of our needs so that what we do, we do with joy, with purpose and with a lightness of spirit.

So many of us try to please those around us. We agree to help others, often without any thought to our own needs. We will often say “yes” to a request before checking in with ourselves. Do we really have the time to do this? will we have fun? or if not, what is our reason for agreeing? When we do not reflect on our own needs we sometimes notice that we are not carrying out the request joyfully, we feel burdened and annoyed. We wish we had found an excuse or found a way out. And if we back down we feel guilty. We sense we have let our family or friends down. We feel obliged to help out. We are not acting from the heart we are acting from guilt, or habit or obligation.

I fell into this when I was running the theatre. There was always so much to do and I ended up doing a lot of it myself. I said yes to too many tasks and I didn’t think of my own self-care and my needs. As expected, I fell ill and had to leave my post as Artistic Director. I promised myself when I recovered that I would pay more attention to my own needs, I would not feel guilty when I said “no” and I would choose what I wanted to do because it brought me joy.

I have found that reflecting on my needs and acting from the heart with joy is the key to my own personal well-being.

3 thoughts on “Being Aware of Our Own Needs”

  1. So true!! So insightful!! Thank you Heather for sharing your wisdom!! I believe as women we are socialized to think of others and forget about ourselves and this leads to resentment and even illness as you mention…. it is a disservice to all… when we take care of ourselves first, we can then better care for others. Thank you for reminding me of this important lesson, so easily forgotten…

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