6.02.2013

What do you need?

It's okay if you don't know. Abraham Maslow said, “It isn't normal to know what we want. It is a rare and difficult psychological achievement.” But an achievement worth pursuing, don’t you think? The task of a lifetime.

What is your idea of the perfect {within reason} day? Is there a way you can make it a reality, maybe by trading babysitting with another parent, taking a day off even though you're not leaving town, giving yourself permission to pause your to-do list?  

What is your idea of the perfect {completely unreasonable} day? You ought to be prepared in case you ever win the lottery, or come into a lot of money from a mysterious relative.

Sometimes I put off my needs by convincing myself they’re superfluous 'wants'. Optional, unnecessary. How often I let things like exercise and a full night’s sleep and solitude get pushed off the priority plate to make room for temporarily enticing, but less soul-nourishing, side dishes.

Brene Brown said, "Asking for what you need is one of the bravest things you'll ever do." I tried this last Valentines Day by making my expectations known to Glade. They weren’t lofty—I just asked him to arrange dinner and plan something fun, and suggested we exchange a small gift (we’re cheap like that, so we have to clarify such things…J) It was so much better than resenting him for not reading my mind! The evening was lovely. He brought home Chinese (food, not people) and the ingredients for sugar cookies (which his other Valentine loved) and filled the Netfix queue with romantic comedies for me to choose from and suggested we look at pictures of our dating days. I appreciated how much he took my request and ran with it, and think he had fun in the process of planning, too.

I find it extremely satisfying to meet other people’s needs (especially when the person in question is a girlfriend in need of chocolate and a long chat), but I don’t always make it easy for the people I love to meet my needs, and I don’t always do a great job taking care of myself. 

I loved this article, 3 Self-Care Strategies to Transform Your Life. Caring for Em is one of the most important things I do, but I know (deep down, in the basement of my heart that I don't visit often enough) that modeling self-care will benefit her immensely down the road. That she'll only take to heart the things she sees me do.


So what is it that you need? A bike ride, a heart-to-heart with God, lunch at your favorite sandwich shop by yourself? A nap, a good cry, time to breathe? Can you think of just one thing? How can you get your hands on it this week?