Our body and mind, I believe naturally guide us towards what’s best for us, if we pay attention. Telling us in many ways subtle and strong that we are struggling. So many of us have a tendency to neglect this message our body and mind send us often attributing it to uncontrollable factors.
I, in any case often say, ‘I work in difficult contexts, I am bound to be overwhelmed.’ I realise more and more my responsibility to my work and the people I work with includes taking care of myself. I suppose this also works for personal relationships. Caring for ourselves is not selfish, infact it is an action that allows us to care for others and work more authentically.
No matter what kind of relationship, in my perception caring for someone means caring without expectations. When we love or care for people, expecting that they will in turn love and care for us the same way affects the relationship. It’s natural I suppose to want that the people we care for will care for us too, but I am learning that it cannot be a pre-condition for the love we give.
As a therapist, the first lesson I integrated is that the professional care giving is one-sided and in order to be an efficient therapist, I needed to care for myself. Loving myself the way I am is not an option, its a requirement. And I hope the more I work on that, the more genuine, the love I give.