Today, I Am Saying YES To Me
I believe we are all called to serve. But in order to abundantly pour into others without experiencing mental or physical burnout, we must ensure our cups are full. After all, we cannot offer what we do not have to give. This reality check has led me to evaluate the contents of my own cup and develop self-awareness so I can nurture others from a place of freedom, instead of a place of captivity.
I have a speak-life ritual that includes the following three declarations:
I am a lover who will never stop loving.
I am a giver who will never stop giving.
I am a producer who will never stop producing.
But in speaking those words, I have realized they will only be fulfilled if I implement the following three standards in my life:
1. Being a lover who will never stop loving will require me to first love myself without conditions.
It is easy to claim we love ourselves, but do we really? Do we love ourselves enough to say “no” to people, environments, and habits that hinder our growth and disrupt our peace? Do we love ourselves enough to say “yes” to self-care practices that elevate our state of mind and set us free from worry and anxiety? So many of us are bitter because we refuse to give to ourselves what we willingly give to others. We resent their freedom to take, while we hold ourselves prisoners of lack.
God loves us through all seasons. His love heals, protects, and corrects us along with other things. Now, what if we sat down and wrote a list of things our love for ourselves should produce in our lives? What if we were intentional about not choosing a counterfeit love that is toxic and fleeting? What if we chose a love that produces the fruits of the Spirit in our lives? Which leads me to my second standard,
2. Being a giver who will never stop giving will require me to stop withholding what I need most.
– I need time with God.
– I need creative outlets that aren’t tied to social media.
– I need time to read and write while comfortably wrapped in my favorite blanket on the sofa.
– I need time to freely be me, time uninterrupted.
– Time to unload, restore, and refresh.
As much as I need those things, I have neglected the aching their absence has caused in my life. I spend time with God, but I could spend more. I spend time being creative but not enough. I tend to carry the weight of life’s challenges way longer than I should, and as a result, I get tired, weary, and frustrated. Have you noticed how we sometimes wrestle with the belief that treating ourselves well makes us selfish? But isn’t withholding from ourselves the real act of selfishness? How we treat ourselves matters, and unless we make ourselves a priority we will forever run on empty while attempting to fill others. and lastly,
3. Being a producer who will never stop producing will require me to unapologetically sow into my personal growth.
I remember listening to a video by gospel singer and pastor Marvin Sapp where he said he desires to die empty. Five years after watching that video, those words still resonate with me.
I want to take my last breath knowing I gave everything I had to give. I want to know in my heart that I labored with love and produced fruit that would feed a generation and beyond. But in order to produce fruit that will feed many, we must develop the characteristics of a laborer who understands the cycle of seasons. Preparing the soil, sowing the seeds, watering them diligently and reaping them at their appointed time. And it’s important we know that preparing the soil may simply mean preparing ourselves to carry what will one day be birthed and shared. To whom much is given much is required (Luke 12:48).
Whatever you are called to produce externally, you are first called to produce internally. It always starts within. Your fruit or lack thereof will be a reflection of your motives, thoughts, and beliefs. When we dedicate time to sowing into our personal growth – spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically, we will produce healthy fruit reflective of what it was fed in the process.
As I continue along my journey of saying “yes” to me, I encourage you to reflect on the areas of your life you have been saying “no” to and neglecting your personal care and growth. Your “yes” doesn’t only serve you; ultimately, it serves your purpose and mission in life. When you overflow, those around you will forever be abundantly filled.
Today, how can you say “yes” to you?
Shandice Stallworth | DPW Founder
Dear Purposeful Woman is on a mission to transform how women see themselves, live their faith and walk with purpose daily. I hope my products, programs, and resources encourage you along your purposeful journey. You are here for a purpose, one that lives in the big and small moments of everyday life. Most importantly, it lives within you.
You can keep up with Shandice over on www.shandicestallworth.com