You Can’t Receive the Attention That You Can’t Give Yourself

I like to be adored, admired, respected.  Supported, taken care of, pampered, even.


Who doesn’t, right?


And I am fortunate to have people in my life who send me those delicious feelings.


The problem is, I am not always receiving them.


How ungrateful! I chide myself. But rather than taking in the experience, I would obsess over people who don’t give me those feelings. And spend much of my days feeling un-adored, un-admired, disrespected.


Then it occurred to me. Feelings are like muscles. What you are not used to, you have a hard time feeling.


In the other words, I can’t expect other people to send me the feelings I want, if I can’t create it in myself. Otherwise, even when people send me those feelings, I don’t have the capacity to feel or receive them.


For example, do I cherish myself?


No, I am a mean slave driver. Constantly berating and pressuring to be more productive. A respectable thing to do is to build in time every day to rest and take it easy. Instead of expecting productivity out of every waking moment.


I don’t adore me, either. I look at myself in the mirror and go “ugh!” in disgust.


I need a better approach, if I want to create better experiences for myself.


So I am learning ways to create the feelings that I thought had to come from other people. For example, I learned that brewing herbal tea makes me feel luxurious. Cooking ramen always hits the spot. It is easier and quicker just to drink water or throw together a salad. Taking time to do little things help me feel respected, treasured and cherished.


So here I am, enjoying a slow morning, in my favorite hoodie and a cup of tea, in my favorite spot on the couch. And taking the time to journal and/blog before I do anything else feels good to me.


If I learn to cherish myself, then I will get better at feeling cherished, then when others show up offering more cherishing, I can take them up on the offer and feel even more cherished.


And that makes me better able to cherish others wholeheartedly, too.


It’s a win-win all around, don’t you think?