We live in a time where it’s okay for men to have certain conversations. Conversations that at one point seemed almost taboo to discuss. One topic that’s surfacing a lot more and more is self-love and how caring for yourself enhances your relationships. You would think that it wouldn’t be such a far fetched idea for men to accept, especially when it comes to one’s own happiness and how it’s reflected in the health of his relationship(s). I’ve found in my own journey over the last 8 years, a deeper understanding of what it means to really know myself. To love me, is to heal me. That I need to take care of me. Emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and physically. The result of that is happier and healthier relationships.
It’s been a long time coming for men to get the healing they need. For most men, they’ve never taken the time to embrace that there’s a broken boy on the inside. Tony Robbins once said, “Heal the boy and the man will appear.” It’s so true. Until we address the underlying cause of our hurt, pain, dysfunction we can’t truly flourish in the relationship aspect of life. If you ever find yourself feeling drained, tired or empty, it’s more than likely due to the fact that you’re not taking enough time for you. Taking time for you is a great way to refresh and refuel. I believe there is a difference between caring for yourself and thinking that the world revolves around you. A little selfishness is healthy and a necessity. On the other hand our egos can be deceitful. The ego can trick you into thinking you’re all that and a bag of chips, therefore you never learn what balance looks like in your life. You never learn how to share your experiences and you start to keep people out of areas in your life, where you should be letting them in.
I highly recommend if you want your relationships and life to flourish, that you find what brings you happiness and make time for that in your weekly schedule. Make time to listen to your heart, listen to your gut and address the issues that may surface. Any issue unaddressed, is an issue that will never rest. It will keep resurfacing in your life. Those issues that go unchecked are the number 1 killer of relationships. Most men ignore their hearts. That’s why it’s so important to be intentional about setting time aside to sit with you. Whether it’s 2 hours set aside to dive into a book or just hitting the gym. Set that time aside, because if you don’t prioritize it no one else will. It’s your responsibility to make sure you’re getting what you need, not solely looking for other people to give you what you could’ve been doing for yourself.
Will Smith has a video on his instagram titled Self-love and he said, “True self-love is having self-discipline. The ability to stick to and love yourself emotionally, spiritually and physically.” In essence, taking care of yourself leads to a better you and you can bring the best you possible into your relationships. Even in your imperfections you can still show up, aware and you have an understanding of who you are.
If you have a lady it’s important you make time for her. That’s just as important as making time for you. Just remember, not to forget about yourself. Continue doing those things that make you who you are. Too many men, compromise and therefore lose themselves. I’ve been there numerous times in my past. It’s not a great place to be. I had to learn to prioritize my time. When you understand how to prioritize your time for you, then you’ll know how to prioritize time with her and how that cultivates happiness in your relationship.
I’m noticing more and more men starting to get the emotional healing they need because they’re paying attention to this fundamental truth. By applying this truth to your lifestyle, we will begin to see things shift tremendously in our culture and society. We’ll see dating for some men become intentional, and not like it’s a game to be played. Because they’ve gotten real with themselves on where they’re at in life and what they really want. We’ll see married men who are willing to stay and work through tough times instead of walking away or cheating. We’ll see fathers who are present for their children because they know the importance of having a male figure in their lives. These are a few examples, that I believe we’re currently witnessing because men are placing the importance on what makes a man internally, instead of what he owns externally.
I believe loving yourself is the best way to keep the love flowing in all aspects of your life. Especially in your relationship with your girlfriend or wife. There’s nothing wrong with making her your focus, you’re supposed to but when you start to lose focus of you, that’s when problems start to arise. You begin to look for someone to fulfill a part of you that only you can fill. If you don’t know what makes you smile, that’s a good start. Figure out what makes you tick, schedule and build a routine for yourself. If you’re single, now is the best time to learn and practice this habit. If you’re in a relationship have a talk with your partner and let them know that it’s important for you to have this time. It’s also good to clarify that it has nothing to do with them or wanting to spend less time together, it’s just something you need to do for you. If you’re already practicing what it means to love yourself, continue walking down that path.
Self care is about learning when to take time for you and when to be available to your lady, friends or anyone that’s asking time from you. Because ultimately, you can’t pour into those relationships, with an empty cup. Not in a healthy way at least. You can’t give what you don’t have. The more you get in touch with the real you, the more real your relationships will become. That’s the goal. A gentleman is someone who’s real, not perfect.
Get real about where you’re at in life. Start to determine what’s taking up your time and if it serves you. I see men who just go through the motions of life without taking inventory of their heart and what it needs. Life’s not all about being a protector, provider, ultimately Superman to the world. That’s no way to live. It’s an unrealistic expectation society has placed on us and we’ve taken it on, ourselves. My hope is that we shed that expectation and take better care of our hearts, mind, and how we spend time fueling our souls. When we take that time we become happier, healither, whole men and can truly show up the best way possible in our relationships and love lives.
Founder & Creator of New Age Gents