I’m truly blessed to have some wise and wonderful women in my support network and with Valentine’s day happening last week, the discussion at our last girls lunch centred around love, marriage and living life in and out of relationships.
It was a beautiful conversation with some sound and simple advice that I wanted to share. Everyone had something different to say but there was a common thread – the recognition and belief that we need to put our health and wellbeing first in order to be the best women we can be. Here are some simple ways to do so.
Change your mind freely
Just as the seasons change, your needs will change so don’t be worried about changing your mind as you grow within the relationship. It’s OK to communicate one thing and then realise you need to say something different the next day – its our birth right as women to change our mind right?!!. Understanding comes in stages so forgive yourself as you come to your truths and honour yourself by sharing them without shame.
Ask directly for what you need
Don’t expect your partner to read your mind (unless of course they are a clarivoyant). Be clear about your expectations – communicate what you need from your partner and you’ll be surprised at how good it feels to ask for – and then receive, the treatment you need vs feeling disappointed when they can’t anticipate what you need.
Share your desires
Share your dreams, don’t be scared to share your aspirations for yourself as well as your hopes and dreams as a couple. If you’re planning for the future, factor in your individual desires as an equally important part of the plan. The reason you fall in love is with someone’s unique traits so its important to celebrate and protect those – they are what make you, you after all.
Speak your mind
If you disagree with something they say or do, it’s ok to express this without conflict and while staying in your own integrity. It’s ok and actually very healthy to disagree on some issues, just find a respectful way to do this. For some writing things down works better than verbalising things and gives both sides the ability to mull over an issue vs the confrontation that can happen with an on the spot, verbal exchange. Everyone is different so find out what works best communication wise for both you and your partner.
Love you as much as you love them
Be generous and giving but show an equal level of care to yourself as you would to your partner. This means nurturing yourself, honouring yourself with positive feedback and giving yourself a break when you need it. Time and space are key in a healthy relationship and also allow you to have perspective on things and also miss the other person. Ensure you protect your time. Love you just as you love them.
Drop your standards
Let yourself be vulnerable when you feel vulnerable – you don’t have to be superwoman and perfect. Every day is different and all you have to do is your best on the day – so drop the expectations of yourself. By lowering your expectations of yourself and raising your acceptance levels, you’ll feel enough and when you feel enough you won’t be as hard on yourself nor the relationship and your ideals of it or your partner.
Self-care isn’t selfishness
Take time out for yourself as often as you schedule time for you as a couple. Book times in your calendar where you will do things you love alone. Whether it’s a yoga class or a shopping trip. Don’t let those feelings of guilt about selfishness get the best of you. I’ve witnesses so many women join us on our Bali retreat who had to battle with the useless feeling of guilt, to get to us on retreat. They walk away so transformed and with their tank full, that they can’t believe they almost didn’t make it.
Tune into your own frequency
Pay attention to your feelings and your body and don’t let your head overthink things and cloud your judgement. Your body is communicating messages that you need to listen to and actions may need to be taken as a result. Don’t be scared to trust your gut. The more you practice yoga, meditation and stillness, the louder your intuition will speak and the signs will be.
Asking for help isn’t admitting failure
Look around for help in the form of reading and other resources outside of the relationship whenever you feel things are getting a little rocky. Even the world’s most accomplished life coaches need to work on their relationships to maintain harmony so don’t feel like its a failure to do this and to ask for help.
Don’t forget yourself in the rush of life
Book dentists, massages, regular health checks etc for yourself at the same time as you book them for your partner or children. Make you a priority and ask for help to make those commitments happen just as you make things happen for your family. Don’t ever forget yourself when life gets busy.
Fill up your spiritual fuel tank
That feeling of elation you get from loving and caring for your partner is wonderful but don’t make pleasing them more important than pleasing yourself. While compromise is important, you need to fuel your own tank and feed your own spirit just as you feed the family. It’s the most common thing we hear from women on our Bali retreats, that their tank is often depleted before they give themselves permission to focus on their wellbeing. Make sure yours doesn’t empty, service it regularly and pour the natural born nurture that you have, into yourself too. There is a reason that oxygen masks go on you first, before the family – you can only give what you have.
Escape Haven Bali Retreat, supporting women on year making wellness experiences.
We invite you to come and experience for yourself our award winning Bali yoga retreat. If it’s time to fill up your cup and shrug off all the roles that you wear and all the balls you juggle in your busy life, we’d love to pamper you. From transformational yoga and meditation classes, to exhilarating surf lessons in the warm waters of Bali, fun fitness in our tropical gardens to restorative healing and pampering sessions, how much or little you do is all up to you.