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12 steps for self careI do so love these little words of encouragement that get passed around on facebook, these bits of wisdom from pop culture that fit neatly on a coffee cup. I feel almost bad to even complain. Considering much of what gets passed around, it is so encouraging and charming to see a bit of gentleness in the world, no matter how poorly phrased.

Don’t mind me, I have been known to have long debates with church bulletins before. Hey, I am all about the signs.

So this particular bit of encouragement just rubbed me the wrong way. Let’s start with the first one. If it feels wrong, don’t do it. Oh dear. There goes my job. Also paying bills. Cleaning toilets. Motherhood. Marriage…

The truth is, we often have to do things that just “feel wrong.” Go to school, go to work…..interact with other people. It’s called life. Suck it up, buttercup. It isn’t always going to be about what you feel. Sometimes the best things of all don’t feel so good at first.

Trust your instincts. W-e-l-l yes, except perhaps your instinct to consume an entire gallon of chocolate ice cream, smoke, drink, have casual sex, steal your neighbor’s car… ..Oh come now, I can’t be the only one with questionable and impure “instincts?”

Never give up on your dreams, now that’s a tough one. Do you dream of becoming a unicorn? If so, would you please seek help before getting a horn surgically implanted in your skull? People really do that you know, they dream of becoming something they were never intended to be. There is a consolation prize often hidden in there, you may not get what you have dreamed for yourself, but you might just get something better. Everyone is unique and special, but we cannot all be Batman. Also, he is not even real. Neither are unicorns.

Let go of what you can’t control. Now that one is a real bugger. There are many things in life that you cannot control, but they are so precious and valuable, you should cling fiercely to them anyway. Love, for instance. Other people. Raindrops. Puppies. Toddlers completely dismantling your living room. Control is highly over rated. Don’t let go of the “things” you can’t control, let go of your need for control.

Never speak bad about yourself, yes. Be kind to yourself, yes. Love, oh yes.