A Freelance Life is a Life of Love and Gratitude
Just as you should free your life of the things that make you feel bad, you should learn to appreciate the things and people that make you feel good. This can be as simple as writing a gratitude or appreciation list of your favorite things and posting it where you’ll see it often or as complex as keeping a journal of the things you love. Personally, I do both. I have a short gratitude list on the bulletin board next to my computer and a much longer list in my journal. I try to add to both of them periodically and read over them whenever I’m feeling down. It’s great for a quick mood boost and it keeps me focused on the things in my life that really matter to me.
Once you know the things and people you are grateful to have, start appreciating them and I mean really appreciating them. I’m not always a fan of grand, sweeping gestures, but in this case, I am. Take your mom out to dinner at her favorite restaurant. Call your sister for a random chat. Write an admiring letter to your favorite author. Take your significant other out for a night of romance and fun. Buy your cat a new collar or scratching post or get a fun sticker for the computer you love so much. These things not only make us happy, but can also make the people we love happy as well. By living our Freelance Lives, we have chosen who and what we will have in our lives for the happiness and love they give us. It’s only right to appreciate them for being there.
A Freelance Life is a Life of Self Love
They say that to love others well, you have to love yourself first. I believe that to do ANYTHING well, you have to love yourself first. Even if you have the greatest support team in the world, you won’t accomplish anything if you don’t love yourself. In fact, every tip in this article is related in some way to this one final point:
Self love is crucial to having a happy, successful life.
It seems like such a commonsense statement. Of course self love is important. It should go without saying. But I’m not talking about saying it. I’m talking about practicing it. As a culture, we have developed a stigma against practicing self love. Don’t believe me? Look at the word selfish. Looks ugly, doesn’t it? We put so much effort into teaching kindness and consideration toward others that we sometimes forget that we deserve the same thing from ourselves. When we do something purely for our own enjoyment, we call it a guilty pleasure, as though we should feel guilty for spending our time or money on something that will make us happy. This may seem like a little thing but it can have big consequences.
If we allow ourselves to feel guilty for the little pleasures, we are basically telling ourselves that we do not deserve them. That is not an act of love. When we love someone, we want them to be happy. We want them to have fun, smile, take time for themselves, and have the things they want. We make a point of telling them this. We tell them they are beautiful, smart, kind, fun, and deserving. We remind ourselves to tell them that. We practice it because loving others is important. But loving yourself is just as important.
When you fail to practice self love, you begin suffering in ways you may not even notice. Your confidence level drops. You are more easily stressed out by the little annoyances. You don’t get the rest you need until you absolutely have to. You set your goals and expectations lower. And the truly sad thing about all this is that you believe it is ok.
You don’t tell yourself that you deserve a promotion, so you stop trying to get it. You don’t tell yourself that you are beautiful, so you count your beauty on the compliments of others. You don’t tell yourself that you deserve nice things, so you stop trying to get them and feel bitter and jealous when someone else does.
It is a vicious cycle and it has to stop.
Luckily, stopping it is easy. You only have to love yourself. If you think you don’t know how to do that, you are wrong. You have been loving others all of your life. You only need to start practicing those same thoughts and actions on yourself. When you wake up in the morning, look in the mirror and tell yourself that you are beautiful, or adorable, handsome, the epitome of manliness or whatever suits you. When you want something and can afford it, go ahead and buy it. If you can’t afford it, look for ways to earn more. If you want a promotion, go get it. If you think you don’t have the knowledge or skills to get it, then find a way to get those skills. Take a night class. Go back to school. Whatever it takes.
You won’t always get everything you want and you certainly won’t always get it right away. But will get more out of life if you treat yourself with as much love and respect as you treat others. Love is a funny thing. The more you receive, the more you want to give. It may sound strange, but the same is true about the love you give yourself. Break the stigma against self love and you will be one step closer to living a Freelance Life, a life that is lived rather than endured, free of assumed obligations and unnecessary negativity, full of love, self love, gratitude, and happiness.
Want to know more about living a Freelance Life? Visit my blog: Living a Freelance Life at http://brinnablaine.blogspot.com
Interested in learning more about self love? I highly recommend Gala Darling’s Blog at galadarling.com
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