by Lynn Otieno

Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we’ll ever do.
Brené Brown

Self love or self care as some call it takes many forms. Massages, having coffee at your favorite spot, reading a favorite movie, bubble baths, having some down time with loved ones etc, but I’ve learnt over time that it’s not just physical. It’s also reaching down to the ugly parts of yourself or your psyche and loving those parts as well, or changing them for the better, ensuring that we don’t let them negatively influence our actions or behavior. It is working on yourself, bit by bit. We cannot burry our heads in the sand or create a bubble for ourselves that makes us oblivious of how our actions impact others.
I have a confession to make. I compartmentalize a lot. In a way, it more often than not helps me to cope with emotionally draining situations, but on the flip side, it doesn’t give me the opportunity to deal with stuff in the way that I should. Meaning it’s somewhere in there between a strength and a weakness.
A few years back I came to the realization that not everything deserves your effort or attention. And this came from a place of pain. I’ve learnt the beauty and the strength that comes from saying .“Not my circus, not my monkeys” or “It’s none of my business “.
This has really helped me to focus my energy on only the things that really add value to my life or those that help me grow.
As they say, it’s very much okay to be perfect and be awork in progress as well. I am extremely proud of the psychological and emotional mikestones that I have achieved over the years. There’s a time I would want to respond to every situation around me, but now I’ll just stare or listen and take a hard pass. Yaani I have reached a place where I have zero tolerance for things that add zero value to my life or the lives of those around me.
More than ever I understand the importance of creating a safe environment for ourselves and for our loved ones, and this means that all of us chisel ourselves into the kind of people we want to interact with. The collective outcome is awesome.

There is strength in knowing what you want. Selfish as it may sound, you cannot really know what you want if you’re constantly sacrificing your time and dreams for others. I am a strong believer in helping others achieve their dreams, but not at the expense of mine. If we have to, let’s do this hand in hand

I struggled with indecisiveness for many years, well I still do, but in very trivial things like what to wear or what to eat at a restaurant. If you are in the same position as I was at that time, here are a few things you could try out, that will give you a little perspective.

  1. List down the things you DO NOT WANT.
  2. List down things that make you HAPPY
  3. Think about the things you’re passionate about, the things you enjoy doing
  4. Let your significant others know exactly what you’re trying to achieve.
  5. Find out and clearly determine the things that bother you.
  6. Think about your greatest achievements and the conditions or events that led up to them.
  7. Think about how hard you’re willing to go to to achieve what you want, the things you’re ready to give up to get there.
  8. Do not be afraid to be selfish.
    Having said that, there’s no one working formula for life, it’s a step at a time and our paths are totally different and utterly diverse. Nonetheless, I’m grateful for how the universe conspired to lead me to the woman I am today. The experiences, the highs, the lows, the years, the tears, the happy moments, the people, all led me to a woman I’m utterly proud of. If you’re not where you want to be yet, hang in there 💙💙💙

Photography: Lawren Studios

Make up : Make Up By Brandy

Top : Masterpiece Designs

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