I’ve never been one of those people who sets New Year’s Resolutions. For some reason the holidays always end up being so overwhelming that the only thing I can think of is: “ummm…I pledge to stop drinking Champagne several times a day and to limit my intake of baked goods to simple cereals.”
But, throughout the year, inspiration always comes to me. And, for whatever reason, the recent passing of Memorial Day has got me thinking. I just spent a glorious weekend with my friend Stephanie in Portland, and I did everything I wanted to do. I walked through The Pearl. Sipped beer at Deschutes, Henry’s and Rogue. I shopped at the beautiful hatmakers’ boutiques and selected a couple of chapeaux that fit me perfectly. I sat in the sun and watched windsurfers. I tasted wine straight from the barrels in the caves at Archery Summit and Domaine Serene. I walked up to a waterfall and felt its cool mist on my face.
On the looooong flight home, I gave a lot of thought to why my weekend was so much fun. Sure, it was fuled by great times with one of my closest friends. But also it was driven by my needs and wants.
I am a people pleaser. It probably goes wayyy back to the days when I took enormous delight in seeing my parents or teachers or golf pro or anyone else with authority be happy with me. Somewhere along the line, I’ve given the entire world authority, and I’ve tried my hardest to make everyone like me. This results in a lot of, “what do you want to do, Charlotte?” “Oh, I don’t know….whatever you want.” (in the back of my head, a soundtrack of “don’t rock the boat” plays on repeat.)
I have worked very hard to break the cycle of NEEDING that approval. NEEDING everyone to be okay with every step I take. NEEDING everyone to understand me. And, for the most part, I’ve done a good job.
But recently I’ve slipped back into some yucky old habits. I’ve felt like I MUST say yes to all invitations. MUST agree to serve on every committee. MUST be nice to the person who isn’t.
Well, enough is enough. I need to reel it in and focus on myself.
Effective today – May 28 – I hereby pledge to make this the Selfish Summer. What exactly will I do? I’m not sure yet. But mark my words, I’m going to put myself first again – and I plan to like it!
Anyone want to join me in some hedonistic summertime fun? Beach day? You’ve got it. Roaming up and down Clark street just to watch the idiots before a Cubs game? sold. Staying in for a night because you feel like rotting in your apartment after a long weekend? Bring it.
Let’s make sure we’re being good to those we love and those who love us, but to keep ourselves in the spotlights in our minds. This goes full circle…in being good to ourselves, we’ll be better for them.