“Me first” movement

The Me MovementI stumbled upon Rebecca Scritchfield’s Nurture Principles and I was delighted at from first glance! Rebecca is a fellow RD and I haven’t had the pleasure to meet her in person (yet) but this philosophy meshes so well with mine that I was inspired to mention it.

No matter what we are doing, I rarely meet someone who doesn’t feel they should be doing more (especially women)  And one of my favorite quotes is a Buddhist saying, “You can search the world over and will never find anyone more deserving of your love than yourself”.

It’s shown up in different ways at different times in my life: Running on injuries and making them worse.  Eating disorders in high school. Doing a double degree program in grad school (& working part time).  Pushing myself through many years of illness and not reaching out for help when I needed it.  Not only didn’t I get the love and support I needed, but I deprived my friends of the opportunity to be there for me, too.  At this point I consider myself a recovering Type A.  I understand my actions, and yet, wish I could have had the wisdom to be kinder and gentler to myself and put “me first” more often.  I also struggle with step 2 of “me first”, which is not feeling guilty about step 1.

I’ve made “me first” a priority.  And certainly chronic pain and fatigue ‘helps’ because I have an immediate, palpable reminder from my body of what it needs, and what it doesn’t.  I meditate almost every day, and host a mediation group, too.  I eat good food and thoroughly enjoy my indulgences.  As you well know, I plan our meals weekly, which greatly reduces my stress.  Especially in the summer-ish months, I’m outside enjoying nature every day.  I have a job I adore and am working on the ability to say “no”.

And yet it’s still an every day practice.  I have even more need to put my well being first, especially as we get ready to move and there is much more chaos at home.  So I’m hoping the badge will help remind me of what is most important.  Some people view self-care as extravagant or self-indulgent, but IMHO, that couldn’t be further than the truth.  Children learn their self worth through how they are treated, but also the way we treat ourselves.  And I know I function better and am a better human being when I take good care of myself.  I can’t do anywhere near as much to help the people I love take better care of themselves (or my clients) unless I first take care of myself, and treat myself with kindness and gentleness.

Now, it’s time for bed.

Peace, love and broccoli,


About Cheryl Harris

Life played a funny trick on me. I've studied nutrition for years, and much to my surprise, found out that I could manage many of my health issues via diet. I've been GF for years, and I've got a bunch of allergies and sensitivities. But it definitely doesn't keep me from cooking, baking and enjoying my food. Thanks for stopping by.
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11 Responses to “Me first” movement

  1. I love this idea Cheryl and I can so relate your thoughts. And you’re so right, when we take better care of ourselves then we’re able to give so much more to others. I’m going to print out the buddhist quote you shared! Thank you for this!

  2. Kimberly says:

    I used to find it VERY hard to take care of myself, but health issues have FORCED me to slow down and pay attention to what my body needs. I don’t know why we struggle with guilt for taking care of ourselves! My PT was encouraging me yesterday to take better care of myself to be a good example to my daughter who at 15 already has symptoms of fibro.! I keep telling my daughter that she needs to start taking care of herself, yet I don’t do a very good job of that myself!

  3. Hi Carrie,
    Glad the quote resonates with you–and yes, ‘givers’ often seem to have the hardest time receiving, and yet it’s so necessary!

    I completely understand–our bodies are excellent teachers, like it or not! It sounds like you and your daughter can support each other in healing, and that it gives you even more incentive for self care.

  4. Cheryl and all — so glad you liked the “me movement” — it was born of my own experience I can say that for sure!

    We invite people to contribute guest blogs and participate in our Twitter chats every other week Weds at 9p.m. EST. If you’re on Twitter, you can follow the #mefirst hash too for lots of convo on self-care. We have a badge and even a pledge PDF you can print out and sign if you want a physical reminder of your commitment to yourself.


  5. This is a great reminder. I would love it if you could post how you have incorporated meditation into your day. That has definitely been a challenge for me.

  6. Hi Rebecca,
    Thanks for sharing that info!

    I will have to post my ways of incorporating mediation/self care…I’d love to hear how others do it, too.

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  8. I saw this on Rebecca Scritchfield’s site and had to click over to tell you what a great post this is. I’ve been trying to incorporate daily meditation into my life, but find it so easy to slip out of that “me first” mindset. Of course, that has been dangerous to my health at times as well. I had not hear that Buddhist quote before either, so thank you for sharing it!

  9. Hi Jill,
    I appreciate you stopping by. Thanks for your kind comments! I’m sure you, your path and your story helps to inspire people around you. I’m very much a believer that our challenges and struggles not only help shape us into fuller, deeper human beings, but they help inspire us to go beyond what we believed possible.

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